As I update you on what we have in store I am trying very hard to not break down into a whine and go down, because this is exciting! Anything that involves community development with a focus on alternative ways of expression, gets my heart beating a little bit faster.

Starting next week Saturday Africa on My Sleeve will be working in collaboration with KFM to deliver "Transforming Public Spaces", a programme funded by Auckland City Council to create empathy between youth and the city. The Council believes that if youth have a positive relationship with public spaces, they will be less likely to tag or engage in graffiti. We agree because they are alternative ways of expression! 

We will be hosting workshops that engage radio, music and art with a focus on identity and accessing public spaces in Auckland as a migrant youth. At the end of the workshops we will host performances around Auckland. The purpose of these performances will be to bring together all the tracks, spoke word and art we would have created with the youth. In addition to that it will be to showcase the skills and talents they have come to discover and embrace to the wider public. 

What is really exciting about this project is that it is about empowerment, it will be giving a voice to youth and allowing them to share/express themselves. We want to encourage these youth to put together these performances that will demonstrate their multi-faceted skills. Youth will be asked to participate in, not only in performing spoken word, free-styling whilst dropping their choice tunes that will represent both their personalities, as well as their cultural backgrounds, but also playing a major role in events management, administration, promotion and many other relevant skills. We feel that all of the above will give our youth, ideas and inspiration for future career possibilities. We also believe that performances will enhance their confidence by giving them a sense of empowerment, plus bringing them further together in working towards a common goal. 

Starting Sat the 17th October at Kfm studio, Te Karanga Trust ‘Transforming Public Splaces’ will be 2 hours long, a 2 - 4 pm session, comprised of two hours of live broadcast. At our disposition, we will work with the Kfm booth for interviews and music sets,  and all that goes with live broadcasting, as well as a huge resource of Kfm Djs. We aim at having these youth getting familiar with the workings of a radio booth to inspire those expressing the desire to get and define themselves in the media sector, whist elevating their self esteem with the basics of knowing how to communicate with a mic to a wide community. 

The main thrust of our weekly programme will be based on the kaupapa of working with our youth, engaging them whilst actively listening to their ideas and understanding where they are coming from, and guiding them towards embracing positive behavioral patterns in relation to public spaces and what kind of performances they would like to be involved in. 

This is a great initiative and we are proud to be a part of it. Limited spaces are available (only 6 youth), if you are interested please email africaonmysleeve@gmail.com and we will send you all the details.

Love & light,

Maka

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