Christmas in Benin – Caroling Part I

Caroling in Benin 1

As part of the Christmas celebration, groups of children roam around singing and dancing. There is usually a leader in a special costume like the Santa in this photo. Most of the costumes are homemade and highly inventive. Not all would be immediately recognizable as Christmas themed by U.S. standards. My favorite style uses two or three shirts cut into small pieces and sewn together to resemble the feathers of a bird.

The groups sing, dance and pound on homemade drums for a minute or so and then look for a small gift to help them celebrate the holiday. Jen and I usually give 50 or 100 cfa ($0.10 or $0.20) to the group. One of the kids collects the money, inspects it to see that it is enough and then thanks you with a bow before continuing on.



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