Covid-19 updates from our director

We could really really use your help now

5/12/2020​​​

Dear Colleagues and Supporters, 

Unfortunately, due to policies mandating social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19, county-wide school closures across the Bay Area have paused our pending contracts for the remaining school year. These programs include after-school classes, assemblies, workshops, and enrichment courses, all geared toward Hip Hop education, artistic youth self-expression, and culturally responsive pedagogy. Thus, the mentor-student relationship between our educators and the youth we serve has been adversely impacted. In addition, over a dozen HH4C artists-educators have been especially impacted due to the performative nature of their trade and mentorship. Many of our educators rely on teaching contracts and artist residencies for their livelihood. Most Hip Hop artists in the Bay Area aren’t eligible for unemployment while still grappling with the severe, if not complete loss of income.

HH4C is currently refining its Hip Hop Education curriculum to offer to our community partners via online courses and a series of live-streaming workshops. These courses will serve students in place of in-person instruction with engaging activities, instructional video lectures, and presentations to follow at home during their time away from the classrooms. This will help us continue our mission to serve as a positive outlet for disadvantaged youth, who are at home and in need of quality educational programming or out of our geographic reach. Our course will include weekly Live Zoom conferences with members of our artist educator staff where students can ask questions, be quizzed and tested, and share ideas and projects and maintain a sense of community rooted in mutual interests.

Click on this link to donate and thank you.

Khafre Jay

Executive Director ​

3/25/2020​​​

Dear Colleagues and Supporters, 

 

We hope that during this time of isolation and shelter in place has led you to reconnect with your creativity and imagination. We want to thank those who have been thoughtful and generous in helping us get close to our campaign goal. With your support, we can continue our work despite these unprecedented circumstances. Your compassion has reminded us here at HipHopForChange how beautiful we can be as a community when we come together and show up for one another. Yes, these are challenging times, but our resiliency supersedes our current disruption. The next two weeks are crucial as we come together to flatten the curve. As such, there's still work to be done. Though our partnerships have been postponed, our departments have been virtually meeting to discuss alternative deliverables. We are currently creating a web-based Hip Hop education course for students who are at home. This virtual course will include activities and tutorials in all of Hip Hop's artistic elements: Djing, EmCeeing, Break Dancing, and Graffiti Art, along with other learning resources. The online course will help us continue our mission to serve as a positive outlet for disadvantaged youth, which is an impactful and necessary tool now while kids are at home and in need of quality educational programming.

 

 

It’s also important to note,  HipHopForChange wants its artists to know they are valued, cared for, and respected. Our goal is to not only provide programming for our youth but also maintain employment security for our educators. Our teaching artists are pivotal to our movement, and with this virtual platform, HH4C can foster community building within its organization. We hope everyone is mentally and physically sound. Let's keep the creativity and movement alive. 

 

All the best,

Khafre Jay

Executive Director ​

3/17/2020

 

Dear Colleagues and Supporters, 

 

Thank you so much for your impact and support in the Bay Area. We are reaching out to you today to ask for your help keeping Hip Hop For Change afloat in the coming months. We’re not going to sugarcoat it--the spread of COVID-19 has hit us hard. With school closures, HH4C’s school contracts have been suspended and our teaching artists are now out of work. Our grassroots activities, from which HH4C generates the majority of its income, has also been halted, instantly cutting short HH4C’s cash flow. In addition, scheduled events and sponsorships have been canceled. 

 

However, HH4C believes that it is more important than ever that we continue to uplift our community even through the worst of times. In 2013, HH4C’s Executive Director, Khafre Jay, recognized the lack of space and resources for youth and artists to express their inner emotional turmoil caused by socio-economic inequality and struggle. With the belief that art can empower and educate his community, Mr. Jay decided to create his own nonprofit. Since then, HH4C has used grassroots activism to educate people about socio-economic injustices and advocate solutions through Hip Hop culture. By combining creative opportunities with economic power and community development, HH4C combats the displacement of people of color in the Bay Area. Over the past seven years, HH4C has:

 

  • Engaged 22,000 low-income students in culturally-competent arts education

  • Delivered programming to over 100 educational institutions

  • Employed over 800 local community members 

  • Hosted 65+ community arts events that engaged over 25,000 audience members to increase awareness of issues facing low-income minority communities such as environmental justice and gender equity. Our artistic and industry partners include Earth Amplified, Sac Roc, Ryan Nicole, Hieroglyphics, Kev Choice, Green Peace, the Sierra Club, San Francisco City College’s Women, and Gender Studies Department, Girls Inc, DeYoung Museum, and the Asian Arts Museum. 

  • Facilitated knowledge dissemination about pressing social issues in the Bay Area to over 250,000 community members through grassroots activism and engagement

 

As you know, HH4C is 93% funded by direct public support from people like you. We are reaching out to our greater community for additional help at this trying time. HH4C is one of the few remaining POC-led arts and education organizations in the Bay Area, founded and operated by locals. Our staff and board live and work within the communities we serve. No other organization carries out a three-pronged mission to empower, educate, and uplift the local Bay Area POC community through art, knowledge dissemination, and community-building. Examples of our impactful programming include:

 

  • The MC Arts Education and Youth Empowerment Program: Our program is designed to connect low-income youth of color into the arts, music, and creative industry, and provides students with an open road to learning, creation, and expression that scaffold their education and assist in integrating academics and arts. Most of the youth we work with have not seen their communities and cultures reflected in traditional academic material. THE MC’s Hip Hop pedagogy connects students’ interests and lifestyle to curriculum content, inviting students to engage with education through a medium they are familiar with. Our program springboards students into creative writing, cultural history, logic and reasoning, spatial and corporeal awareness, and inter and intrapersonal intelligence. Beyond the classroom, our experiential, culturally-relevant arts training program helps to create a counter-narrative to that of mainstream corporately promoted radio rap and Hip Hop music. In 2012, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Center conducted a study showing that 30% of Oakland youth suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. 90% of the students from The MC come from oppressed Bay Area families who do not have the funds to pay for therapy. The survival of expressive arts in our schools is a powerful intervention for our youth today.

  • HH4C’S Annual Women’s Empowerment Summit: a showcase of Bay Area female artistic and intellectual talent that focused on the accomplishments and everyday struggle women of color face. The event engages a cross-section of POC Bay Area youth in a culturally-relevant learning environment that addresses issues of gender equity and provides a platform to connect our target communities with partners who empower and advocate Womxn daily. Through music, art, and education, HH4C engages the local public in the history and future of gender equity in the Bay Area, increases awareness of the cultural legacy of Bay Area female artists and thinkers, fosters critical thinking around pressing gender equity issues among the Bay Area general public and connects aspiring POC artists, activists, and intellectuals with arts and community development professionals.

  • Agents of Change: In partnership with East Bay Regional Park District (EBRPD) and with initial support from the California Arts Council, HH4C curates summer camps for Black and Brown adolescents who rarely experience nature. Together, HH4C and EBRPD designed a program for naturalists and Hip Hop educators to provide full-day learning workshops consisting of the five elements of Hip Hop and the correlation of each element with nature. 

 

With your support, HH4C can:

 

  • Provide our existing staff and teaching artists with the paid time off they desperately need to ensure their own safety as well as the well-being of their families

  • Facilitate live streaming arts and education programming

  • Keep HH4C’s day-to-day operations afloat

 

Support us and keep our work using the link at the top of this page and thank you for your time and attention.

Sincerely,

 

Khafre Jay

Executive Director

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 515 55th Street, Suite A, Oakland CA. 94609

Office Number ( 10am-6pm M-F ): (510) 319-9929

©2013 HipHopForChange Inc.