Partners

As a small charity running on a shoestring budget, Sandblast relies heavily on its partners to increase the impact and and scope of its work. Without our partnerships we would not be able to have achieved the results we have gained so far. Over the years we have forged partnerships with a wide range of organizations, institutions and venues. Each and everyone of them has either shared the values and perspectives we promote or have been persuaded by the importance of our mission. In all cases, we have looked for links that connect us in inspiring and sometimes new and surprising ways.

Current Partners:

MA Music in Development, School of Oriental and African Studies is an innovative, new degree that explores the role of music within a broader framework of Communication for Development, building on the premise that music and other performance activities represent rich discursive sites where local knowledge, social structures and cultural meanings are negotiated, challenged and affirmed. We collaborated with convenor Dr Angela Impey in the coordination of the conference ‘The Art of Struggle: addressing human rights through music’, which kick-started Sahara Live Week (April 20-27, 2013).

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FairTunes is a UK-based charity dedicated to using the power of music to enhance people’s lives in developing nations. They set up training programmes and create recording studios and radio facilities. Since 2010, they have been our main partner for the Studio-Live music empowerment project and have: travelled twice to the camps with us to assess technical needs, helped us source cheap equipment and a van to be donated to the local Saharawi cultural authorities. They also collaborated in the coordination of Sahara Nights, the official launch of the project (London, June 6, 2012).

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Olive Branch Arts offers a broad range of innovative arts-based experiences and training programmes aiming to empower participants to find their voice and promote social change. Our collaboration with them began in 2010 with a two-week long youth theatre workshop in the camps financed by the SAF and led by Becky Hall and her group, who have been returning to the Saharawi refugee camps ever since for further training workshops with the youth, the disabled and the victims of land mines.

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Refugee Radio was founded in 1981 as an outreach to youth and young adults and is committed to providing media outlets through social networking. Their projects use radio, music and community events to give a voice to those who do not have one. They were one of our main media partners for the Sahara Nights launch of Studio-Live (June 6, 2012)

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Roundhouse is a legendary venue located at the heart of Candem and home to a bold and exciting programme of live music, theatre, dance, circus, installations and new media. The Roundhouse’s Studio Theatre hosted Sahara Nights (June 6, 2012), a multi-arts event that launched Studio-Live in London with the collaboration of Saharawi singer percussionist Aziza Brahim and 20+ London-based international artists.

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SOAS Radio is an online station and social media enterprise based at the School of Oriental and African Studies (University of London). It works with students and academics to produce radio programmes, sharing the knowledge of SOAS with a world-wide audience and helping students engage directly with the parts of the world they study. They have supported music project Studio-Live since 2011, becoming the perfect platform to promote Saharawi music and Sandblast’s events in London. We are exploring possibilities about collaborating to set up creative media hubs in the camps in the future.

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St Ethelburga’s Centre for Peace and Reconciliation aims to build and renew relationships across divisions of conflict, culture and religion, helping address cultural and social disagreements positively. They organise music events, conferences and workshops that offer people the possibility to engage with diverse traditions from around the world. Sandblast has been collaborating with them in different events since 2007. Our last joint project has been the absolutely beautiful (and sold-out!) concert of Aziza Brahim + screening of film documentary Al-Khadra: Poet of the Desert, about Aziza’s poetess grandmother (April 26, 2013, as part of Sahara Live Week).

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World Heart Beat Music Academy: a specialist world music academy for young people, which not only brings and teaches music from all over the world but also provides disadvantaged youth with instruments and tuition. Founder Sahana Gero, also a musician and band leader, has a deep commitment to spreading the benefits of music learning and playing across London and beyond. WHBMA were our main partner for the coordination of Sahara Live Week (April 20-27, 2013), a series of educational activities and concerts around Saharawi music and human rights with Saharawi singer percussionist Aziza Brahim, especially for the organisation of two music workshops and the end-of-the-week concert at their premises.

Click here for a full list of partner organisations.

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