Kanye West circa 2013 is pretty far-removed from his College Dropout days, brimming with wide-eyed ideals and genuine commentary. But in case we get too caught up in tabloids and headlines, Good Guy Yeezy is still alive and well.
Kanye’s currently doing his part to support the arts in his hometown, using music as the medium with his “Got Bars” program. Through his nonprofit organization Donda’s House, West is launching the program for at-risk youth on the city’s South Side, giving them an extensive course in music writing and production.
Donda’s House will partner with partner with the ARK of St. Sabina for the pilot program. The 10-week program will be offered to those ages 15-24 and applications are being accepted now (click here for info) through August 2.
In a released statement, Kanye West said, “My mom spent her life as an educator and I am happy that Donda’s House can pick up her torch and honor her life’s mission.” The program will be steered by frequent Kanye collaborator Rhymefest, who also serves as the Donda’s House co-founder and assistant director. ‘Fest noted that “Got Bars” will change our youth musically, get them healthy and keep them busy in a creative, peaceful environment. I know it will be an even stronger program because of our partnership with the ARK of St. Sabina.”
Hard to chalk this up as anything but a win for all parties involved. The more jaded members of the audience might label it a publicity stunt, but if Kanye’s charity can cause just one kid to turn their back on a more destructive lifestyle, then mission accomplished. Especially in Chicago, with public schools and extracurricular activities dropping at such an alarming rate.
Hats off to a man using his influence and wealth to make the world a better place.