A civil war that began in the late 1980's drove Somalis and Bantus from their home in Africa.
Many of those refugees settled in the Buffalo region, and the population has grown to approximately 3,000. Saladi Shebule, the executive director of the Somali Bantu Community Organization of Western New York, says that this population has found success in Buffalo, and the area has proven attractive to refugees that first settled in other areas of the US. A Somali Bantu Community Day will be held today at LaSalle Park, and Shabule states that it will be a significant event.
"This event will be the first event that has ever been held, not only in Buffalo, but also in the entire USA."
This cultural celebration will include traditional foods, music and storytelling.
The event is free and open to the public. Festivities will get underway at noon.