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Me and my nephews and nieces

Peace Family, Friends & Community,

Most of you know for the last 5 years I’ve been living in Asia, based in Bali, Indonesia. I’ve continued my work as an evolving artist with the goal of shifting minds, progressing spirit and motivating action, especially in youth. As one of 6 Black men living in Bali (yes..6), and 3 from the US, I’ve been a direct contact for a people whose only reference point has been through movies, music videos and televised soccer games. Because I’ve grown up in Oakland, amongst a culturally, socially and spiritually aware community of artists/teachers/activists, I’ve been able to correct many of these false assumptions and negative stereotypes for many Indonesian people.

I came home to The Bay, for the first time in 5 years, back in February. Since I’ve been back, I’ve had a lot of time to reflect on my 5 years of experience in Bali and how it connects with the arts and activist community here in The Bay. In that reflection and I’ve become clear in my vision of making official the work i’ve been doing over the last 5 years, specifically and the work i’ve been doing since I was 18 year old newborn in knowledge of self and community.

Here in the Bay, there are organizations and centers left & right that are dedicated to youth development in every way, and we’ve always had them. In Bali there are organizations dedicated to young children, but there are much fewer dedicated to teens and young adults and none dedicated to young urban performance artists, and nothing close to a center or organization dedicated to connecting arts and activism and social entrepreneurship. There has never been a Live Lyricist Society, Upper Room, Black Dot Cafe or Leadership Excellence, organizations which guided my artistic development.  There is no Youth Speaks, Youth Uprising, Green Arts Center or DJ Project, where youth have consistent access to top tier music production equipment, dance studios, practice and performance spaces and more than a few professional mentors to guide their growth process. Bali does not have those youth centers,  but Bali has hundreds of youth who desire it and would directly and immediately benefit from it. My goal is assist, full-time, the young urban arts community in Bali, in resolving this issue. To do that, I need your assistance.

I have founded Tru Karya Cipta (True Creative activity), a youth performance arts, education and social entrepreneurship organization in Bali, Indonesia. It will be the first organization in Indonesia to train young artists, not only in developing their talents, but also how to use their talents to benefit their communities. The organization will inform them of the social, ecological and economic issues facing Bali, and guide them in the process of becoming socially aware and responsible artists and entrepreneurs, to better address and aid in the solution to these problems. The long term goal is to establish a facility in Bali, that will serve as an international center for young artists who are dedicated to solving the many issues facing humanity and the Earth. With the establishment of a facility, international cultural exchange can take place. Every year young artists and professional artists, from organizations or solo, in the Bay and other parts of the world, can come out to Bali for a few weeks and do their creative work in a beautiful and natural environment, also collaborating with Balinese performance artists in using art to engage, enlighten, inspire and ignite action for the benefit of our global village. Imagine young artists from East Oakland collaborating with young artists from Denpasar, Bali in a project addressing issues affecting both of their communities. This uniting of cultures through the arts, with the goal of real change, is the vision.

Here is the link to the blog site where all of our goals and objectives are posted: http://truecreativeactivity.wordpress.com/donate-to-the-cause/

I’m asking for your assistance in raising $3400. This funding cost will cover:

– One airline flight to Indonesia ($1600) – One work permit for one year ($1800)

With this covered, I can devote attention to the development of the organization, without having issues with immigration. This will also allow this project to be rooted in community funding and from that root grows a tree with fruit that nourishes across international borders.

Right now, I have 800 friends on Facebook. If only 170 of those friends would contribute $20 (which is about the cost of a movie ticket and a drink), then it would allow the project to move to next step, which will be obtaining non-profit status with the Indonesian government, acquiring funding to secure land and building to establish our Pura Tru Karya Cipta or True Creative Arts Temple.

I have already did the groundwork and have gathered support from professional local and international artists and organizations in Bali, now I need your support. If you are able to donate $20…or $10….or $5, just click  the “Donate” button below. I only need 170 people to invest $20 in this project and the next steps forward will be taken immediately.

Please forward this to any of your friends who you think would be interested and ask them to make a donation to this project.

I thank you very much for your supporting the global youth arts and activist movement.

Peace, Kamau Bakari Abayomi (PitchBlackGold)                                                                                                                                   pitchblackgold@gmail.com