Portland multi-cultural hair show to aid African women

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PORTLAND — A first-ever multicultural hair show, which will benefit a charity empowering girls and women in Zambia, is planned for Sunday, Jan. 22, at One Longfellow Square.

The show includes modeling a variety of hair styles and coloring, vendors, live music by the Pihcintu Multicultural Chorus, and gift bags for all attendees. The event, which begins at 6 p.m., also includes food and a cash bar. Tickets can be purchased online at Eventbrite.

“Attendees can expect an entertaining evening with stylings onstage, and models from our multicultural community displaying updos, braiding, casual styles” and more, said Mufalo Chitam, one of the event coordinators.

“Under the creative and masterful direction of stylist Dathan Hunter, who brings his experience from similar shows in Minneapolis and Detroit, the hair show will feature some of Maine’s best stylists, colorists, barbers, makeup artists and accessory designers serving Maine’s increasingly diverse population,” according to a press release about the Beauty in Colors Hair Show.

The event will also put a spotlight on the Women’s Initiatives that Strengthen and Empower, or WISE, which was founded locally in 2004 and helps vulnerable women in a remote part of Zambia. The nonprofit trains abandoned, abused and widowed women to become self-supporting through educational, vocational and agricultural initiatives.

Three years ago WISE also established a program that provides high school scholarships to students from the bush in Zambia’s Western Province, where girls are often at great risk of early marriage.

Along with the hair and beauty products on display, hair show attendees will also be able to purchase baskets and other crafts made by the women of WISE, including totes, trays, bowls, purses and sandals.

The overall goals of the hair show are to increase the number of scholarships offered by WISE and to provide funding for construction of a new learning center in Zambia, as well as promoting “diversity and oneness in our city and state,” Chitam said.

Kate Irish Collins can be reached at 710-2336 or kcollins@theforecaster.net. Follow Kate on Twitter: @KirishCollins.

A multicultural hair and beauty show in Portland Sunday, Jan. 22, will benefit a charity that empowers women and girls in a remote part of Zambia. Models, hairdressers, jewelry designers and more will be at the Beauty in Colors Hair Show at One Longfellow Square.