Hip-Hop Conference Teaches Youth Leadership, Community Organizing




Memphis youth will have the chance to gain leadership skills and enjoy a hip-hop concert for free this weekend.

“Let’s Organize The Hood: Black Youth/Hip Hop Conference” will offer a variety of workshops, trainings, and panel discussions on how youth and young adults can help combat the dilemmas plaguing their communities. Participants will also have the chance to enjoy performances from aspiring hip-hop artists.

The two-day event will take place Saturday, January 18th and Sunday, January 19th at the Java Complex (1423 Elvis Presley). It's being sponsored by the Memphis Black Autonomy Federation, an organization that seeks to provide resources and outlets that help uplift and encourage the black community.

“A lot of times, in the black community, we have too often relied on politicians, giving our control over to them thinking they’ll handle everything,” said JoNina Ervin of the Memphis Black Autonomy Federation. “But they’re not necessarily the people who are the most affected by the problems in our community. We’re trying to get it back to the grassroots, to the people who actually live in the neighborhoods in the community. [We're] teaching people what they can do to take charge when there’s a problem in their community."

On Saturday, January 18th, free workshops and trainings on leadership and community organizing against community dilemmas, such as poverty, unemployment, and police brutality will be provided. The event will also feature panel discussions on those topics. It will last from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

On Sunday, January 19th, there will be a free hip-hop concert featuring "socially conscious" lyricists and cultural artists as well. The event will last from 3 to 7 p.m.

To find out more information on the conference, email organize.the.hood@gmail.com or call (901)674-8430.

Check out the conference's theme song, ”Organize The Hood,” by Steve B.I.K.O. below.

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