Mon, Oct 23, 2017
           

History of the GTA

The first wave of Gambians migrated to Texas in the early 1980s mostly to attend college at Navarro College in Corsicana, TX, located some 30 miles outside of the Dallas suburbs. As the years went by, many would move to Dallas after graduating from Navarro College to finish their four year degrees at the different universities within the DFW Metro area.  The early 1990s saw an increase in the number of young Gambians enrolled at Navarro College. Many of them moved to the Dallas/Fort-Worth metro after graduation. The trend of Gambians relocating to Dallas/Fort Worth continues and will continue because of great and reasonably priced cost of higher education, a vibrant job market, highly diversified industries, and better job opportunities.

By the middle of the 2000s, the Gambian community grew noticeably larger but there was no umbrella organization that would cater for the needs and aspirations of the young and growing Gambian community. We had great organizations but they were all based on interest or religious affiliations.

The Texas Gambian Muslim Association (TGMA) did a great job organizing Muslim related activities, including the highly anticipated and well attended annual Dallas Gamo, dubbed “America’s Gamo”.  The Gambian Christian Association (GCA), also did a great job organizing Christian related activities including the Annual Easter program which is also attended by many people from everywhere in the US.  The Gamtex Soccer Team, the original organizer of the Labor Day Soccer tournament, did a great job organizing soccer related activities which attracted not only Gambians but the entire African community in the metro.  The Gamtex Labor Day soccer tournament would be the best African tournament year after year.  Judging from the community activities of the three organizations, one could easily see the abundance of talent and people eager and willing to have an umbrella Gambian organization. How did we connect the dots to bring all these component organizations into one composite organization – eventually named The Gambia-Texas Association? Mr. Momodou Krubally, helped answer that question for our community.

In 2006, Mr Momodou Krubally, a natural born leader and a philanthropist who had recently moved from Seattle to Dallas, saw the potential in Dallas and the need for an umbrella organization.  He immediately engaged the leaders of the different groups and everyone bought into his idea, that we needed an umbrella organization. His leadership skills and honesty convinced everyone about the need for such an organization.  A community meeting was organized at the Turkish Raindrop foundation headquarters and a task force was immediately setup and in February of 2007, the Gambia-Texas Association was born. The purposes of the association include but are not limited to:

·         Promote and preserve the cultural heritage of the membership.

·         Educate Gambians on business acquisition, financial and legal affairs.

·         Foster and provide socio-economic support for Gambians.

·         Promote unity among Gambians.

·         Participate in voluntary and charitable activities within Texas communities.

·         Facilitate cooperation between Gambians and similar organizations in Texas.

·         Provide a forum for discussion about issues of interest to the community.

·                             Assist Gambians in need both in the United States and abroad.

Since 2007, the GTA has raised and donated more than $40,000 to individuals and families for issues ranging from Immigration, death in the family, Scholarships and many other forms of hardships. We have also collaborated and continue to partner with other community based organizations to contribute to their causes, help those less fortunate than us, and inspire future generations.

Today the GTA is a household name and stands toe to toe with any Gambian organization thanks to a dedicated GTA executive committee and committed support from the members of our community. We wholehearted appreciate and thank all former and current members of our community for making and continuing to make the GTA and our community a success story