Grassy Park Hip Hop artist Emile Jansen is celebrating his 50th birthday by launching an initiative to teach artists how they can make a living and secure their future.
The “Artists and Hip Hop 4 housing and land” programme will begin with workshops on Friday July 20 at Kannemeyer Primary School in Grassy Park, from 2.30pm.
Emile would like to see various youth get together at his birthday project and learn arts-related skills before witnessing the artists performing at a concert that evening, from 7pm.
Emile is the creator, founder and creative director at Heal the Hood Projects and founding member and manager of the group Black Noise.
He said in his work with youth since the early 1980s, he has learnt that in order to keep youth following their passion, they need to be assisted to secure housing and land.
“We see the way that ‘getting a real job’ is killing our ability to create alternative solutions to the many social ills our communities are faced with. We see our youth sacrifice their passion and enter debt that stops them from ever revisiting it because of studies, 30-year house bonds, car debt, marriage, kids, education, etc and the world is a lesser place for losing each person’s contribution,” said Emile.
Over the last 15 years, Emile has been working with a group of youth from Lavender Hill and many have gone on to work nine to five jobs and have lost their passion for art and music.
Seeing this happen, Emile decided that it is time to teach these remaining members of the Heal the Hood Project practical Hip Hop school, Mixed Mense, how to raise funds to buy their own houses in a shorter period of time and also to assist the Heal The Hood Project itself.
He said the organisation now has a plan to buy land and container style housing for the first graduates of the Heal the Hood Project. “We are hoping that this will slowly grow into an artist community that heals their hood through creative and artistic solutions.”
To assist Emile make this dream come true and celebrate his birthday, you can support the initiative by attending or sponsoring a youth to attend the workshop at R100 each.
“Help us to create a legacy and freedom for creatives to create a better community,” he said.
Emile is hoping the “Artists and Hip Hop 4 Housing and Land” will grow to assist many other artists from Cape Town, South Africa, Africa and ultimately the world, who are struggling to find a place to live, yet have international quality talent and creativity.
“As creatives, we have the ability to create products and opportunities to change our perceived
struggle. We are not seeking handouts, but exchanging our talents for economic assistance,” he said.
Call Emile on 074 411 11968 or WhatsApp 082 395 8125.