While searching for information about the Finnish Red Cross (Finnish: Punainen Risti) on 23 January 2012, I came across news about a rap music competition organized by the organization's Savo-Karjala district in Finland.
For the first time, the Red Cross in Finland is organizing an anti-racism rap competition (Finnish: rasisminvastaisen rap-kilpailun). The competition is open to all young people under 29 years old from all around the country.
The organizers invite young rap music producers (amateurs or professionals) to submit a rap song (video or audio) recorded in DVD or CD-ROM, or stored in a USB memory stick. It could also be sent via email (dvd-, mpg-, avi-, wmv-, mov-, wav or mp3 format).
A home recorded song that has not been previously published is sufficient.
According to information published (in Finnish) on the website of the Finnish Red Cross, recordings should be sent to the address: Suomen Punainen Risti, Savo-Karjalan piiri/Rap-kilpailu, Kauppakatu 35, 80100 Joensuu or to an email address available of the website. The deadline for submission is 29 February 2012.
Results will be published and the best presentations will be seen and heard in Joensuu, eastern Finland, on 21 March 2012 - UN Anti-Racism Day, officially known as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
The winner receives a two song publication contract and a performance at a festival next summer. The second and third best participants will receive music-making products.
Mindful of recent concerns about the rise of racism in Finland, this anti-racism rap music competition, in my opinion, is a move in the right direction in the fight against racism.
A poll by Helsinki Sanomat, the biggest daily subscription-based newspaper in Finland, revealed in November 2011 that two thirds of Finns feel that Finland is a "fairly racist country". In 2011, President Tarja Halonen also acknowledged the rise of racism and xenophobia in Finland.
Getting young people in Finland involved in the fight against racism is absolutely a good idea. The present state of affairs in the Nordic country begs for more of such initiatives.
You are encouraged to participate in the anti-racism rap competition.
*Flyer: Punianen Risti.
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