How The Roy Cape Foundation Is Fighting Crime With Music
The Roy Cape Foundation is healing communities through Music Education
He is mild-mannered, soft-spoken and humble. Yet, when he enters a room, it his generosity of spirit that overshadows everything around him.
Roy Cape, otherwise known as Uncle Roy or Pappy , is a celebrated saxophonist who is a beloved fixture on the soca music circuit. He has helped to mold the career of many soca industry greats including Destra Garcia, Olatunji, Blaxx, Voice The Artiste and Ricardo Dru, to name but a few. However, even with these countless achievements under his belt, it is the challenge that he has taken up at the age of seventy-six (76) that may be one of his most monumental to date.
Uncle Roy’s latest contribution is the establishment of the Roy Cape Foundation. It is a movement created to heal communities by using music education to combat the crime epidemic that has been consuming some islands in the Caribbean lately. The Roy Cape Foundation has taken on the challenge of fighting the cycle of crime with music.
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In January 2016, two school boys were shot to death on their way home from school in the community of Laventille in Trinidad and Tobago. This incident was the catalyst that gave birth to the Roy Cape Foundation. Unfortunately, this crime was a reflection of a larger crime surge that is happening on the islands.
In 2017, the Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) reported close to 500 murders in Trinidad and Tobago, averaging roughly forty (40) murders a month. With a population of 1.5 million people, these statistics are disturbing. The senseless crimes that dominate news headlines continue to be a source of concern for many citizens. Each report of theft or murder is met with disdain and chatter.
Roy Cape and his team including Ian Jay Clarke , Cheryl L Cape , Juliana Landeau, Major Edouard D. Wade and Stacia Landeau , decided that the time for talk was over.
RESPONDING TO CRIME WITH MUSIC EDUCATION
At this point, you may be wondering; Why music? Well, the life-changing potential of music education is one that Uncle Roy not only talks about; it’s the story of his life. From his own humble beginnings at an orphanage Uncle Roy was given an opportunity to play an instrument. Mastering the saxophone has taken him the world over. He has shared the stage with some of the greatest musicians throughout the diaspora and has become a local celebrity for his contributions to the soca industry. This success story illustrates the life-changing potential that music can have on a young person’s life.
With this at the back of their minds, the team at the Roy Cape Foundation decided that they wanted to take on the challenge of giving more young people access to similar opportunities by ‘developing music education in at-risk communities throughout Trinidad and Tobago, as well as in other countries in the Caribbean Region.’
The Roy Cape Foundation plans to ‘partner with like-minded artistic and cultural organizations to develop community-based initiatives that use music as the predominant methodology for engaging young persons particularly at-risk youth who may be vulnerable to the negative impact of crime, violence and other anti-social behaviors.’
THE FOUNDATION’S VISION
The foundation has a carefully thought out vision which is to
‘make music literacy and instrument performance programmes available to interested persons of various ethnic, cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds throughout Trinidad and Tobago in preparation for their pursuit of possible careers in the Arts, Entertainment and Music Industry.’
This plan includes a short-term vision of providing students with instruments in the brass and woodwind family as a start. The long-term goal is to establish a fully furnished symphonic orchestra inclusive of the steelpan, and, to provide meaningful employment to members of the community where the schools are established.
BRINGING THE VISION TO LIFE
As one can imagine, this project requires a lot of planning and funding. With limited corporate sponsorship at this early stage, the team is reaching out to the community and the diaspora to kick-start the movement. The Roy Cape Foundation welcomes monetary donations or in-kind donations preferably in the form of musical instruments. The main instruments requested for start up include:
- Bb Trumpets
- Bb Trombones
- Eb Alto Saxophone
- Bb Tenor Saxophone
- Bb Clarinet
- Db flute
- Bass Guitar
- Drums and
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
This effort can only be successful with the help of the wider community. If you would like to contribute, please consider donating via one of the links below. The Roy Cape Foundation thanks you in advance for your generosity.
MISSION: To elevate the brand of Caribbean culture in the fields of MUSIC, BUSINESS and the ARTS by celebrating the work of cultural ambassadors while advocating for upcoming Caribbean talent1.