Sweet Home New Orleans Works to Preserve Local Culture

You can help raise awareness for the work of Sweet Home New Orleans by adding the charity logo to your website.

Founded in 2006, Sweet Home New Orleans has worked on a variety of fronts to preserve the cultural and musical traditions of New Orleans through restoration of communities and the lives of individuals within communities whose presence is so vital to the city’s unique culture.

At the time Sweet Home New Orleans began its work, the cultural integrity of the city of New Orleans was severely threatened when hundreds of thousands of those who make up the city’s rich cultural base were displaced by Hurricane Katrina.  Many of those displaced lacked the necessary resources to return to their homes and resume their lives.  As a result, a large number of communities were left in a fragmented state and were vulnerable to the threat of gentrification.

Sweet Home New Orleans has addressed the situation by stepping in to revitalize endangered communities—providing social services including financial assistance, case management and advocacy for more than 2,300 members of the local music community struggling against barriers to finding affordable housing and sustainably resuming their lives.  Sweet Home New Orleans provides its services through staff from within the communities it serves to target the needs of local musicians and artists, Mardi Gras Indians and members of Social Aid & Pleasure Clubs of New Orleans.

You can visit the official website of Sweet Home New Orleans to learn about volunteer opportunities or call 1.887.933.8466 to find out how you can help with a donation.  You can also help by getting the word out, which can be done simply by adding the Sweet Home New Orleans logo and adding their official link to your own website.

Hip Hop Ages, While Some Consider Changes a Death

The Original Hip-Hop Heads

Since its conception in 1979 with the Sugar Hill Gang’s Rapper’s Delight, hip hop has dramatically changed from the days of the Fresh Prince, to a mega-culture that took over the nineties, and finally to the culture of violence, bling, and womanizing that it is infamous for today. And, while the mainstream sensationalists that consume the genre appear to some as the death of hip hop – namely, Nas, who dropped an album in 2006 titled, “Hip Hop is Dead -” some aren’t quite yet ready to start digging the grave.

Devin Cole, a third-year political science student from Tampa, is one of those people. He doesn’t believe that hip hop is dead, he just thinks that it may have lost its direction, and he despises the fact that the meaningful songs from yesteryear have been completely replaced by the swagger-saturated anthems of present-day.

Paul Porter, the co-founder of Industry Ears and former music programmer for BET and Radio One, also agrees that hip hop is still alive, just not quite kicking; however, his concern for the future of music has inspired him to found Industry Ears, a non-profit organization that strives to ensure well-balance media – which couldn’t be more appropriate in a time where conglomerates run a major portion of all media outlets, convincing the public of what they like to hear.

Are you sure it's dead, Nasir?

As it stands, it seems more important for people to consider things for themselves, rather than worrying about the health of hip hop; art lives in the people.

Cornerstones Community Partnerships Empowers Southwest Communities With Preservation of Native Culture

Restoration of sites such as the Socorro Mission in El Paso, Texas not only helps to preserve a rich history of cultural heritage, but is beneficial to local tourism economies.

Founded in 1986, Cornerstones Community Partnerships has been working for the preservation of the rich native history of culture and tradition in the Southwest United States.  Cornerstones Community Partnerships is a nonprofit organization centrally based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which seeks to preserve the rich cultural history of the Southwest through a community-based approach to restoration of historic sites, encouragement of building practices for vernacular architecture and reinforcement of cultural and traditional values.

Cornerstones Community Partnerships takes a community-based approach to its efforts for the preservation of the local history of Native American and Hispanic culture in many states of the Southwest which allows both members of each community as well as willing volunteers to have a direct hand in the work of the organization which is mutually beneficial.  Cornerstones Community Partnerships helps to enrich and empower communities by offering apprenticeships to at-risk youth as well as providing on-the-job training for adults.

There are many ways to get involved, including a variety of volunteer opportunities for those who wish to take a hands-on role in the work of Cornerstones Community Partnerships for the preservation of the rich heritage of native culture and tradition in the region.  Willing individuals can volunteer to take part in a restoration project in the field, or can volunteer to assist with office work and mailings.  Cornerstones Community Partnerships accepts tax-deductible monetary donations towards tools, building materials and office equipment.  Cornerstones Community Partnerships additionally accepts donations of items including building materials and tools, books, articles, photos and office supplies.

Indigenous Language Institute Works to Preserve American Indian Cultural Identity

The Indigenous Language Institure provides workshops and access to technological learning tools in its efforts to preserve American Indian language.

Based in Santa Fe, New Mexico, the Indigenous Language Institute is performing an invaluable service for American Indian communities across the United States.  The Indigenous Language Institute is working urgently to help preserve American Indian cultural identity by providing teaching tools to American Indian communities for what is possibly the most important element in the preservation of Native cultures—language.

The benefits for American Indian communities from the work of the Indigenous Language Institute go well beyond language itself.  It has been repeatedly shown in numerous scientific data studies that the preservation of American Indian cultures—particularly language—had a very close and direct effect the quality and long-term benefits of the educational experience of American Indian youth.  Educational programs which have involved teaching tools for culture and language have not only helped to instill a stronger sense of cultural identity among many American Indian youth, but have been shown to have a very strong correlation with improved academic performance, test scores, and on life skills and self-esteem essential to the empowerment necessary for long-term success and the ability to empower others.

The need for the preservation of American Indian language and culture which the Indigenous Language Institute addresses has been well recognized for decades.  However it is still the case that most Native languages and cultures are rapidly disappearing, while poverty and poor quality of education are just a few of the problems that persist on American Indian reservations.  The Indigenous Language Institute seeks to raise a total of $10 million by 2012 for courses and workshops, both for language and for teaching the basics of technological learning tools.

You can help the Indigenous Language Institute in its efforts to preserve a fast-disappearing part of the American Indian identity upon which many areas of American Indian education and future success are dependent by making a money or securities donation on the Indigenous Language Institute website.