Funk For Life is back to Kibera!
Acclaimed jazz artist, Nils Landgren, first started to support Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) in 1994, when he took part in a charity concert in support of the organisation’s work in Rwanda. Since then, his collaboration with MSF has grown, with Nils and his band forming the initiative, Funk for Life, which raises money for MSF through album sales and aims to inspire achievement in children through music.
Nils and his band, The Nils Landgren Funk Unit, first travelled to Kibera, which is one of Africa’s largest slums, in 2009. As well as donating musical instruments and teaching children how to play, the band performed at the opening ceremony for a new MSF clinic in the Kenyan slum. They have maintained a link with the community since then, and will return again later this month to perform at a concert timed to coincide with the handover of the clinic from MSF to the Nairobi City County Health Services.
Funk For Life in Soweto – Watch the Video!
The Nils Landgren Funk Unit & The Funk For Life Project in Soweto – November 2014
140 Instruments have been distributed to the Magnet Music Schools Program in the South West Township of Johannesburg at Thaba-Jabula Secondary School.
This project has been sponsored by Air France/KLM, YAMAHA SA – Global Music Instruments & The Swedish Embassy in South Africa.
Funk For Life 2014: Soweto: The South West Township of Johannesburg
For 2014, The Funk For Life Project ambition is to support Music Programme called “Magnet Music Schools” in Soweto (South West Township) of Johannesburg.
As for Khayelitsha last year, the project will aim to raise awareness about life in the township of Soweto, Johannesburg whose most population is living in precarious situation.
On top of the music instruments distribution & music workshop in Thaba-Jabula Secondary School in Klipspruit, Soweto (part of the Magnet Music Programme), Funk For Life Project in South Africa will comprised of a video recorded in Johannesburg with Nils Landgren Funk Unit & Concord Nkabinde and a series of short clips composed of interviews, discussions and stories from the township inhabitants, the Funk Unit artists & Concord Nkabinde themselves.
Set against a wide selection of footage shot inside Soweto, the music video and short clips portray the objectives of the Funk For Life Project, with recording performance by Nils Landgren and his Funk Unit & Concord Nkabinde in SA as their presence in the township as they teach kids how to play their instruments.
Soweto (South West Township of Johannesburg)
Soweto is a large township with over 1,3 million inhabitants located on the outskirts of Johannesburg.
Many parts of Soweto rank among the poorest in Johannesburg, although individual townships tend to have a mix of wealthier and poorer residents. In general, households in the outlying areas to the northwest and southeast have lower incomes, while those in southwestern areas tend to have higher incomes.
The economic development of Soweto was severely curtailed by the apartheid state, which provided very limited infrastructure and prevented residents from creating their own businesses. Roads remained unpaved, and many residents had to share one tap between four houses, for example. Soweto was meant to exist only as a dormitory town for black Africans who worked in white houses, factories, and industries.
In 1994 Sowetans earned on average almost six and a half times less than their counterparts in wealthier areas of Johannesburg (1994 estimates). Some Sowetans remain impoverished, and others live in shanty towns with little or no services. About 85% of Kliptown comprises informal housing.
The Funk For Life Project is back to South Africa!
Next week the Nils Landgren Funk Unit will be returning to South Africa with the Funk For Life project supporting Music Schools in the South West Township (Soweto) of Johannesburg & the work of Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders) around the world.
Nils Landgren Funk Unit Tour in South Africa
28 October / South Africa – Pretoria – Swedish Embassy / Funk Unit celebrating 20 years of Democracy
31 October / South Africa – Soweto – Johannesburg / Funk For Life Project in Soweto’s Music Schools
2 unique shows will be performed as well at The Orbit – Home of Jazz in Johannesburg
Wednesday 29th & Thursday 30th of October at 20 h 30.
Details about the gigs at The Orbit – Home of Jazz in Johannesburg:
The Orbit, 81 De Korte Street, Johannesburg, Gauteng
Wednesday 29th & Thursday 30th of October at The Orbit – Jazz Club
The Orbit website: www.theorbit.co.za,
Tickets are R 200, to book contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call +27(0)11 339 6645
The Nils Landgren Funk Unit: Don Funk, Andy Pfeiler, Jan Ugand, Rasmus Kihlberg, Petter Bergander, Jonas Wall
FUNK FOR LIFE MOVES TO KHAYELITSHA, SOUTH AFRICA!
In April 2013, after 3 consecutive years supporting the work of MSF in Kibera – Kenya, the Funk For Life project has for ambition now to support as well the work of MSF in Khayelitsha, South Africa (SA).
Funk For Life in SA will aim to portray life in the township of Khayelistha, Cape Town whose most population is living in very precarious situation without clean water, electricity, sanitation, education or healthcare.
On top of the music instrument distribution & music workshop in the music schools in Khayelitsha, Funk For Life Project in South Africa will comprised a series of short clips composed of interviews, discussions and stories from the township inhabitants and Docotrs without Borders (MSF) patients, the Funk Unit artists & Lira themselves and of course aid workers from Doctors Without Borders (MSF) and their endless efforts to fight the HIV/AIDS & TB epidemics inside the township.
The video clips will not only show the tremendously difficult living conditions in Khayelitsha and the work of MSF, but will go beyond Nils and Lira’s public persona to their private life as humanists and their respective quest for “Music for Change”.
Khayelitsha is a large township with over 500,000 inhabitants located on the outskirts of Cape Town. The majority of the population originates from regions outside Western Cape Province: only an estimated 5% of the population is born in Khayelitsha, and an estimated 75% of the people come from Eastern Cape, come in the hope to find a job and increase the quality of their life.
Thirty percent of the population are children under the age of 14, and 46% of the total population is between 15 and 34. The ratio men: women is approximately 50:50. Over 70% of the population are living in informal housing (shacks), with the remaining one-third lives in brick houses.
The literacy rate (defined as able to read a newspaper in isiXhosa, the most commonly spoken language in Khayelitsha) is high, at about 94%. More boys than girls attend primary school. Overall, 70% of the people have obtained their Junior Certificate (obligatory schooling certificate at the end of Grade 9) and an estimated 25% of the population has graduated from high school. There is no gender difference in high school graduation. Although the percentage of the people going on to tertiary education is very low at less than 5%, approximately twice as many girls than boys continue to further education.
Funk For Life moves to Khayelitsha, South Africa!
The rates of poverty, unemployment and crime, including sexual violence, are alarming. Full-time employment is very low, especially for women, with only 17% stating they are in full-time employment while approximately 45% are unemployed. Among men, an estimated 33% are considered to have full-time employment and about 27% are unemployed. A significantly higher proportion of women (63%) than men (45%) depend on their family and friends as main source of money.
Khayelitsha carries one of the highest burdens of both HIV and tuberculosis (TB) in the country. An estimated 100,000 people in Khayelitsha alone are HIV infected, which represents 20% of the total population. Every month almost 1,000 new people find out that they are HIV positive.
The adult HIV prevalence rate in 1999 was estimated at 15%, increasing to 30% at the end of 2007 and decreasing to 20.3% at the end of 2010. In 2007 antenatal HIV prevalence was 30.2% decreasing to 26.3% at the end of 2010.
26% of all adults on antiretroviral therapy (ART) in the Cape Town Metropolitan area are treated in Khayelitsha. As of August 2011, the Khayelitsha clinics are providing ART for almost 20,000 patients. Over 4,600 new patients are started on ART each year.
Accompanying the enormous AIDS epidemic in Khayelitsha is a catastrophic TB crisis. The TB incidence is more than 1,400/100,000 per year (26% of all Metro TB cases), and TB/HIV co-infection is close to 70%, making Khayelitsha one of the highest TB burden settings in the world.
FUNK FOR LIFE©
In support to Médecins Sans Frontières
”A good life means people coming together, and sharing…”
“Most people want to help but don’t know how to do this…”
Type: Documentary feature.
Format: Day-to-day life in the slum, live performance footage of Nils Landgren and the Funk Unit together with the music schools of Kibera & Interviews/testimonies from the main characters of the movie.
Time: 58 minutes.
Language: English subtitled in Swedish.
Kibera (Africa’s largest slum situated in Nairobi, Kenya) has an estimated population of approximately half a million. Covering an area of 2.5 square kilometres, Kibera has a population density of approximately 2000 inhabitants per hectare. HIV prevalence in Kibera is estimated between 10-13% . Despite the high population density, very few public investments are made in Kibera, leading to a severe lack of clean water, electricity, sanitation, education and healthcare.
In the past, Nils Landgren has been involved in projects dedicated to providing instruments and musical instruction to children in the slums in South Africa and Brazil. As in Brazil and South Africa, the Funk For Life project involves providing slum kids with musical instruments and giving them a chance to learn how to play and to develop their musical skills. The Funk For Life project aims to inspire and enable young people to find a way out of the slums.
Funk for Life© is a project aimed at raising public awareness about the acute and basic needs in urban slums. The idea behind Funk For Life© was formulated, hatched and created by Nils Landgren, Magnum Coltrane Price (Jazz artists) & Dan Sermand (former General Director of Doctors without Borders Sweden), and supported by Mattias Klum, Peter Östlund & Schiaffino Musarra (Photographers/Film makers).
Funk For Life aims to portray life in the slum of Kibera, Nairobi whose population is half that of Stockholm yet lives in an area the size of Södermalm without clean water, electricity, sanitation, education or healthcare. Starting in Stockholm, Funk For Life follows Nils Landgren as he travels with other artists from the Funk Unit to the heart of Kibera. The movie is comprised of interviews, discussions with and stories from slum inhabitants, the Funk Unit artists themselves and aid workers from Doctors Without Borders (MSF). Set against a wide selection of footage shot inside Kibera, the film follows the daily lives of three Kibera residents and the frequently overworked MSF team, with live performances by Nils Landgren and his Funk Unit in the slum as they teach kids how to play their instruments.
This documentary not only shows the tremendously difficult living conditions in Kibera and the work of MSF, but goes beyond Nils’ public persona to his private life as a humanist and his quest for “Music for Change”.
Director: Peter Östlund
Cinematography & editing: Peter Östlund fsf & Schiaffino Musarra
Executive producer: Dan Sermand
Co-producer: Schiaffino Musarra & Dan Sermand
Still photography & archive material Mattias Klum