Beats, Rhymes And Relief

The arts speak to us in a variety of ways. Whether it is photography, poetry, music, dance, painting or another medium for expression, art can incite emotion, move us to action and spur on a movement. That is why people and groups that use the arts to tell a story have such impact. Think of the U.S. Civil War photographer Matthew Brady whose haunting images were instrumental in bringing home to polite society the horrors of war. Think of books like George Orwells 1984 or To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. These works signified movements in popular thought and, it could be argued, changed the course of history. Dance and music can tug at our emotions. Paintings and sketches can capture our imagination or provide us a still life of another time. In all its form the arts are powerful agents of change and it is the hope of using the arts to create social awareness that drives the work of a nonprofit organization called Beats, Rhymes and Relief.

Beats, Rhymes and Relief was founded two years ago in response to the growing need to create awareness of what was happening to children who were displaced by the Syrian civil war. Two men who worked in the film industry decided to stage a benefit concert to raise awareness of the mental health and education needs of Syrian children in refugee camps. Both men were passionate about giving back, good at their jobs and dedicated to the cause, so their concert was a great success, but they realized that they wanted to do more. Thus Beats, Rhymes and Relief was founded with the goal of using the arts as a catalyst for social change, inspiration for social good and a means to bring awareness to issues related to the underprivileged and children.

Since its founding Omar Al-Chaar and Rameen Aminzadeh have used Beats, Rhymes and Relief to raise awareness of various social issues. They have gone into many inner city areas across the U.S. with messages of hope for the kids told through music, dance and graffiti artistry. They have launched a campaign to get a million bars of Hip Hop music with non-violent and uplifting messages on the radio waves and they continue to work to create awareness of what is happening to the children of Syria.

This week is featuring two articles on Beats, Rhymes and Relief and its campaign for Syrian children, called the #RestoreHappy campaign. These articles offer a spotlight into both the goals and results that this nonprofit is achieving as it works to pass on a message of social responsibility and hope. Join us in supporting this great organization by reading the articles here: at on the Neighborhood Gazette and telling others.