Starfish Project: Addressing social ills through an array of arts and culture activities
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Cape Town - Ziyawamo arts and culture, a non-profit organisation, offers an array of activities in the townships in a bid to address social ills such as gangsterism, crime and substance abuse.
The organisation was established in 2015 by Mzukisi Khuse after he saw a gap in the Gugulethu, Nyanga and Langa communities, where there was no proper development of young artists.
It was well known for sharpening young people’s musical skills and organising workshops for them. Khuse said such workshops were designed to create a platform for the young artists and an opportunity for them to learn more about the craft and its business side.
He said it was critical that young artists were equipped with skills and information in the early years of their careers so that they do not make mistakes which could easily have been avoided, and hoped to see those who attended their workshops releasing their own albums and using the knowledge they learnt.
Khuse said by understanding that those young creatives were either not working or still looking for a breakthrough in the music business, the organisation did not charge them.
He said that was why they depended on partnerships to ease some of their costs not covered by main funders, including hiring a venue and catering for them.
During those workshops, Khuse said industry professionals from different organisations were invited to be guest speakers in a form of master class, and offered valuable information and knowledge which those young creatives were not exposed to or could not access due to financial difficulties including music publishing information, recording contracts, entrepreneurship opportunities.
“The purpose of these workshops is to steer young people in the right direction. We want to take their craft to another level,” said Khuse.
Khuse said the workshops have been growing since their inception in 2015 and the response has been a positive one.