Comments received from various participants at Camp Fareta 2012

I loved it. I cried when it was over! I am recommending it to all of my friends. I want to come back next year.

There is no place like Camp Fareta. It is a magical place that was VERY difficult to leave this year. The teachersí inspiring teaching skills, drum and dance brilliance, and joyful personalities make me want to live in Camp Fareta land for a long time! I learn SO MUCH as a dancer, drummer, teacher, community leader. Every year I fall more and more in love with West African Drum + Dance, thanks to Camp Fareta, Youssouf, Christina and everyone. The vibe is welcoming, loving, and supportive. I donít experience as much competition and inflated egos as I do at other conferences.

I learned a lot at camp Ė more than I did at another West African dance conference I attended earlier this year. I think this was because camp had different level options to choose from (Beginner or Advanced) so I could better tailor my learning. Also camp was more immersive and smaller than the conference I went to. It gave me more opportunities to get to know the teachers and other participants. Plus the constant exposure to drumming helped too.

A village was created and I really enjoyed meeting everyone and the knowledge that the culture is brought to Camp Fareta. The amazing teachers put everyone at ease and facilitated learning in a way that was truly amazing.

We had an amazing time, and are already mapping out our plan to be there next year for a four-night stay. Wonderful stuff!! The kids had a fantastic time at the camp and voted to go again.

Iím so glad I came! The atmosphere was really conducive to learning, sharing and making friends. I felt really safe at camp. People in my cabin were really respectful (I was in the womenís quiet cabin). It being my first year, I felt a little shy, but I ended up making a lot of new friends. Iím really happy and excited about all the new friendships and connections I made at camp. I learned a lot from the other participants.

The teachers were all great. The crew you have there is simply all stars.

We love your food, the food is good! Thanks!

Youssouf sets the tone of cooperation, learning, and dedication to arts. He totally blew me over yet again when he gave his opening speech before his first class on Sunday. He said: no competition, but: learning, working together, being friendly Ė and thatís what the camp is. Personally, that kind of tone totally turns me on! I love that kind of vibe. It makes me feel relaxed, welcome, and happy, and lets me learn more. I must say that most of my growing and learning so far has happened at Fareta because at home I donít have such a nice environment. At Fareta, it is VERY CLEAR that the whole setup is to help us learn as much as possible and become as good as possible. The teachers are happy when they see enthusiastic students, and they give you more learning and feedback when they see you enjoy and want more.

The food was excellent and there appeared to be plenty for everyone.

The atmosphere was positive and encouraging. Everyone seemed to enjoy each otherís company and appreciate each otherís differences.

I had an absolutely amazing experience at camp, and I plan on making it an annual treat to myself.