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Hear My Voice Announces Poetry Relief Fund

Quaz | Apr 5th, 2020 | poetry seen | No Comments

Hear My Voice announces Poetry Relief Fund for freelance poets during Covid-19 pandemic

Hear My Voice, a non-profit poetry organization based in Tshwane (South Africa) announces the Hear My Voice Poetry Relief Fund. An initial amount of R16 000 has already been contributed towards the fund by the NPO. The fund is aimed at providing help to South African freelance poets who have unwillingly forfeited income from canceled events and possible bookings due to covid-19. The fund will go towards paying poets a meagre honorarium for partaking in a series of live-streamed readings and performances. It will further provide poets who want to host their own live-streamed shows the resources to do so by providing access to a paid version of Zoom which has no time restrictions and offers streaming capabilities to Facebook and various other social platforms. All events will be streamed on the Hear My Voice and the respective poet’s Facebook pages.

The fund will avail R1 000 (we hope to increase it as the fund grows) per poet for their live-streamed performance that is curated by Hear My Voice, alternatively the poet can choose to do their own live streamed event using our platform and charge an access fee or solicit donations. Poets can only apply once for either of the two options available through the Fund. Please be advised that Hear My Voice will not be able to support all requests.

Option 1: Paid Zoom Platform service (poets schedule their own online event through our Zoom subscription and can charge for access or solicit donations. All income goes to the poet).

Option 2: Curated Live Stream performances (Hear My Voice curates the performance and the featured poets get an honorarium).

Please see below for details on how to apply or donate to the fund.

Why the “Hear My Voice Poetry Relief Fund”

Venues and events such as book fairs, showcases and other types of public gatherings have been cancelled for the foreseeable future. This has caused many artists, specifically freelance artists to lose out on much-needed income. There are little other alternatives, besides live streamed events that artists can use to make up for the shortfall. It’s costly to set up these events and monetizing these platforms can be kind of difficult. We as Hear My Voice aim to lend a hand to poets by supporting them through giving them an honorarium for their live stream performances or alternatively giving them the ability to do their own events at no cost.

What do we intend to do with the fund

There will be two options to the fund:

  1. Hear My Voice intends to give poets who want to livestream their events access to the Hear My Voice Zoom subscription in order for them to host their online events with no limitations. They can also choose to stream the event on facebook instead of just limiting it to Zoom. Poets can then monetize their events by charging a fee for the public to get access to the Zoom room and or request donations. All income goes to the poet.
  2. Hear My Voice will run a series of live streamed events where featured poets will receive an honorarium for participation, particularly freelance poets who do not have any other forms of income besides the services they provide through poetry. The honorarium will come from the Poetry Relief Fund. We are trying to ensure that as many poets as possible receive support from the fund. Each participating poet will receive R1 000.

Once the world is back to normal, the intention is to continue with the fund to support various poets in need.

I am a poet in need, how do I apply?

Candidates can apply at https://forms.gle/Gxhdab2gFDov44RL7 . The only limit to this fund and the amount of poets we can support is the amount of money we are able to raise.We also need YOU as the poet to please share the details of the fund and encourage the public and your networks to contribute to the fund. Please be advised that Hear My Voice will not be able to support all requests.

How can you help

We need your help to either donate to the fund, help us find donors, networkers and supporters in order for us to assist as many poets as possible:

  • Donate to the fund through the following platforms: 
  • Share the link to this page on social media pages, email or whatsapp your network of friends and colleagues urging them to contribute to the fund.
  • Invite others to directly donate to the fund
  • Should you have any questions, concerns and ideas, feel free to contact Hear My Voice at [email protected]

Who or What is Hear My Voice

Hear My Voice is a non-profit organization based in the City of Tshwane, South Africa. Our focus is developing young spoken word artists as well as creating open and uncensored platforms for youth to express themselves through spoken word poetry. We achieve this through organizing local and international exchange programs, workshops, live spoken word shows, open mics and other literature programs for schools, private companies, government, libraries, festivals and other cultural institutions. Visit www.hearmyvoice.co.za for more information

I would like to partner, who do i contact

We encourage big business and government to partner with us by either sponsoring episodes or multiple poets. If you are keen to partner, you can contact Ishmael Sibiya via [email protected] . Ishmael is the Co-founder and executive director of Hear My Voice.

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