El GaGá de la Ceja

February 16, 2013

Dear Community:

TINGÓ: Grita Fuerte collective is pleased to extend its warmest greetings and to wish you much prosperity. With that spirit, we would like to remind you that TINGÓ has been doing cultural, healing and solidarity work for over 2 years in communities of the Bronx and Manhattan. We need your support to be able to continue doing this work.

This year we are going to be part of a Gagá de la Ceja Ceremony in a Batey in the Dominican Republic. Batey (in these times) is what we call the villages that are in the sugarcane fields. These villages are populated mainly by the people who work in the sugarcane fields, most of them are Haitian citizens and Dominicans of Haitian descent.

The Batey de La Ceja was established when the Central Romana started operating in the Dominican Republic on 1914. This is a factory that was previously operating in Puerto Rico and then moved to the Dominican Republic.  This factory employs Haitians and Haitians/Dominicans that live in this town. Most of the people that live in this area are undocumented because the Government of the Dominican Republic does not recognize as citizens children of Haitian parents born in the country. The families that live in the Batey receive their income from working in this factory called, sugarcane fields. The level of poverty in the Batey is high due to the lack of opportunities, discriminatory policies, not a having legal status, working conditions, among other factors.

Despite all the challenges that the people in the Batey all over the Dominican Republic and specifically El Batey de la Ceja goes through, they find their strength within their spirituals believes. Every year ‘El Batey de la Ceja celebrates Gagá’ a religious celebration that takes place during the holy week in the sugarcane field. This celebration is held for 4 days with the participation of the people in the community. This spiritual/religious celebration is open to all the people in the country to come and celebrate our Ancestor’s power. Despite their struggles, the people in the Batey always have the time, energy and love to worship their Ancestors.

This year the people in the Gaga de la Ceja, are asking their international community to come together in solidarity and collaborate to help this yearly event take place. With your help, El Batey de la Ceja will be able to continue carrying on their celebration, bringing people together and keeping their history alive. Be part of this Celebration, El Gagá de la Ceja, and so we can continue our rituals alive for future generations. We cordially invite you to contribute to El Gagá de la Ceja as we continue manifesting our Ancestral celebrations which holds this Batey together.

We are asking for your support through monetary contributions, so that TINGÓ:Grita Fuerte can grow and strengthen our cause. All your contributions will be used to pay, Bus Rent: 2 buses x $350 per 3 days  = $700, these buses will take the Gagá de la Ceja to different Bateyes to bring the ceremony. Food: $1000, this money will provide food for all the musicians and people in the town. The total amount is $ 1,700. This event will take place on March 28-31, in the Dominican Republic. We look forward to your participation and greatly appreciate whatever contributions you are able to make. Upon the completion of this year’s ceremony, we will send you an update on how your contributions helped continued this beautiful tradition.

TINGO’s strong messages make us reflect upon what kind of society we want to live in and the legacy we want our children to behold. Some of the organizers share this beautiful and powerful message that reads: “Its purpose is to create the platform for Afro Latina Womyn to reclaim our culture, traditions and rituals through the power of sharing, organizing and building for the present-future generations. Its belief is that going back to the roots of our cultures, we can embrace our free being, impact our reality and transform ourselves. By serving as a channel for culture, art, and solidarity work, TINGO´ is building the yola/boat that will take us to a ride to connect, celebrate and embrace who we are as African decent.” 

Your role is an essential part of the community and the work we do. Your donation will enable the cultural, traditional and solidarity work to transcend and bring more to our communities. We would highly appreciate if all donations to be made before March 8, 2013.

Thank you all for your cooperation and solidarity always!

Paypal information:


Please choose your contribution:  $20_____$50______$200________$300_______ $400_______ $1,000 ______Other $_______

In Solidarity,

Tingó: Grita Fuerte

Nathalie Tejada: (646) 548-8282 tingogritafuerte@gmail.com

Isolina De La Cruz:  (347) 251-6301 isodlcruz@gmail.com



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