NCC Zimbabwean Celebration Helps Raise $40K to support New Canadians & build Community

March 27, 2018


Two people standing holding platters of food

Carol Lawless, NCC Fund Development Coordinator and Lance Nachoff, Nexicom

Sharing a love for Zimbabwean music, performance and culture, Lance Nachoff was one of several community members and partners the New Canadians Centre (NCC) collaborated with to host their sixth annual gala, One Night in Zimbabwe. “When the NCC told me they were thinking of featuring Nhapitapi – a band I’ve seen perform numerous times at ZimArt, I know the evening would be high-energy and filled with great music and dancing,” says Nexicom’s marketing and sales coordinator. Held on March 3 at Club Aria in downtown Peterborough, One Night in Zimbabwe raised close to $40,000. “I was thrilled Nexicom sponsored the entertainment and helped to bring this dynamic, six-piece ensemble to Peterborough for the NCC’s fundraising event.”


Nhapitapi -a Shona word meaning sweet sounds – specialize in rich old musical and dance traditions from Southern Africa. The band worked closely with the Trent African and Caribbean Student Union to design an interactive dance piece for the annual fundraising event which raises funds to further the NCC’s mission of empowering immigrants and refugees to become full and equal members of Canadian society. “It is our hope to best represent and share the culture of a particular city or country by working closely with our clients, community members and partners of various organizations throughout the city and county of Peterborough,” says Yvonne Lai, Director of Community Development at the NCC. “We asked several of our clients from Zimbabwe to work closely with the Trent Fashion Society to present a display of beautiful African attire to guests.”


The Trent Fashion Society presented a display of beautiful African attire to guests.


In addition to donating a Shona stone sculpture for the live auction, Fran Fearnley, curator of ZimArt’s Rice Lake Gallery, worked closely with the event team to create a Zim-inspired menu provided by local caterer Two Dishes. Fearnley’s admiration of Shona sculpture and the talents of its Zimbabwean creators continue to inspire her 20 years on. “I believe that the New Canadians Centre has been instrumental in supporting newcomers to our community, and also in challenging all of us to ask what we can do to make this   a better home for everyone,” says Fearnley.


Two women posing with a young child

Fearnley brought back hand-sewn scarves made in Zimbabwe by 65-year -old seamstress, JulieKunsekweniyai (pictured above with her daughter and granddaughter).

As a way to express gratitude for support from donors, sponsors and community partners, Fearnley brought back hand-sewn scarves made in Zimbabwe by 65-year-old seamstress, Julie Kunsekweniyai (pictured above with her daughter a and granddaughter). “Julie loves working with African fabrics and together with her daughter Vimbai, they sewed the scarves that were presented to the many people who helped make the evening such a success,” says Fearnley.


The New Canadians Centre wishes to thank:

Entertainment Sponsor





Gold Sponsors




Signature Drink Sponsor





Bronze Sponsors





Media Sponsors





Live Auction






Media Contact:

Yvonne Lai

Director of Community Development

705-743-0882   |   [email protected]