Today MusicConnex was granted exclusive access to the launch of the upcoming Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust event titled 'Unity - A Concert for Stephen'. This event marks the 20-year anniversary of Stephen Lawrence's untimely death and aims to champion youth and social empowerment.
Today Doreen Lawrence OBE announced that this concert would be happening on September 29th, 2013 at The O2 Arena. Speaking about the event she said, “I would like Stephen to be remembered as a young man who had a future. He was well loved, and had he been given the chance to survive maybe he would have been the one to bridge the gap between black and white because he didn’t distinguish between black or white. He saw people as people.”
In Doreen and Neville Lawrence's position most people would be crippled by the unfair injustice of having a young teenage son taken from them, and yet in the face of overwhelming grief, they have forged ahead to create a movement with which to empower other young minds. A movement to enable future generations to see the possibilities within themselves and each other. A movement where there are people available to help encourage and support these young minds. A movement of hope.
The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust was formed in 1998 by Stephen's parents, Doreen and Neville Lawrence as a way to help future generations of young people to enjoy all of the possible opportunities ahead. Since the formation the trust has awarded over 100 bursaries to young people from diverse, disadvantaged backgrounds. In 2008, the trust gained momentum and support with the help of public funding to open the Stephen Lawrence Centre in Deptford SE8 as a centre for excellence for architecture, design and the wider built environment.
Here is a short quote about the centre and its work. "There are many more people who find themselves confronted with seemingly insurmountable obstacles to entry into other under-represented professions, such as law, finance and the media. So we resolved that the Stephen Lawrence Centre would not just be a centre for architecture and the built environment professions but it would be an environment in which aspiring young people could be built up and readied to be change champions in their own right."
"The Trust decided that our primary focus would be the promotion of social justice. We see this as creating a level-playing field to ensure equity and fairness."
The trust remains committed to building a substantial legacy with which to help future generations to reach the potential they hold within themselves. They have outlined a 20 year plan to take them towards this legacy. Click here for further details.
Today it seemed like the whole industry had turned up at Studio One, Abbey Road Studios London to hear the big reveal of this landmark event.
Amongst the crowd of onlookers were headliners Emeli Sandé and Rizzle Kicks who took the stage to talk about why it meant so much for them to be involved with this amazing event.
Other performers on the day will be: Jessie J, Ed Sheeran, Soul 2 Soul, Rudimental, Labrinth, Plan B, Tinie Tempah and Jamie Cullum. An amazing line up!
Jessie J said "When I was asked to be involved in this event I said 'oh yes'. "Anyone that is there at this event I would like them to walk away and ask what can I do to make this world a better place."
Beverly Knight was quoted as saying "The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust is a "Catalyst for change, emblem of hope"
Jamie Cullum said "I feel proud to a part of this event"
Doreen Lawrence took to the stage to say thank you for the support given to this cause by the music industry and went on to say "We want to bring hope to the future for young people. This will mean the trust will be able to continue for the next 20 years"
Tickets go on sale Friday 21st June at 9am.
We will see you there!
Article By: Claire Cripps
Images from: Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust and Claire Cripps