Submitted by: Joann Frasier Dasent, Regenerating Our Offspring Through Stories, Inc.

There are many ways to engage in community service – for the students at the Sankofa Youth Theatre and Creative Arts in La Mott, they gave back with their “Voices of Girls” performance dedicated to the Sandy Hook Elementary School victims. Daughters of Linage founder Sacaree Rhodes of West Oak Lane fed the homeless during the King Day season, and other Northwest Philadelphians participated in the 1,500 projects of the Greater Philadelphia MLK Day of Service.

Regenerating Our Offspring Through Stories (ROOTS) presented “Voices of Girls” with the performance of nine local performers.  The monologues were based on issues that are close to their hearts, according to ROOTS president Joann Frasier Dasent of Cheltenham. Dasent is a member of Enon Tabernacle Baptist Church’s Mount Airy campus, and the show took place at the La Mott Community Center on Saturday, Jan. 12.

“They questioned why someone would want to injure Malala Yousafzaie of Pakistan just because she encouraged girls’ education,” Dasent said. “In response the girls decided to collect books to send to Malala to help her efforts.”

In her monologue another girl shared lunch with Dajanique “DaJa” Brown-Rogers, a Cheltenham High School freshman who was hit by two cars while on her way to the bus stop.  The students had a paver in Daja’s memory installed.  The victim’s mother was honored that evening.

Finally, the show culminated with the incident at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Percussionist Josh Robinson conducted a music workshop. “He was very therapeutic for all those who were present,” Dasent said.

After the performance the girls released 26 balloons in memory of the students and teachers who lost their lives. The balloons were donated by SGS Paper Company.  “We truly believe that (abolitionist) Lucretia Mott would be proud to know that a group of girls were engaged in social issues in a building named in her honor,“ Dasent said.