Rikhado ‘Riky Rick’ Makhado’s family has launched the Riky Rick Foundation for the Promotion of Artivism. Inspired by Riky’s tweet that said “Please believe in young people. Give them as many opportunities as they need to prove themselves. At any cost,” the family of the late musician, artist, fashion and cultural trailblazer created this Foundation to help to promote a better future for young people, and continue building on the call Riky made for all of us to love and care for each other.
Artivism is a combination of art and activism. In a conversation with his parents, Louisa Zondo (a mental health and wellbeing advocate), and Kumi Naidoo (environmental rights and human rights activist) Riky politely told them that their traditional approaches to promoting social justice were not entirely effective. Considering that both Kumi and Louisa have and continue to dedicate their lives to the empowerment of others, Riky felt that they should take things easy and spend more time with family, friends and loved ones because their efforts were not bearing that much fruit. What Riky was conveying to them was that arts and culture as tools for social change are arguably more effective than old-school activism, hence, the word ‘artivism.’ Tania Bruguera, a Cuban artist and one of the originators of the term maintains that “Art is useful. Through art, we can start building a world that works differently.” This is the basis of which the Foundation has been formed, to hone the already existing power of artistic talent amongst young people to find solutions for the many problems we face in society. The Foundation is deeply informed by how Riky was and what he did.
The Foundation launched on Wednesday, 14 June with a campaign called the “Stronger” campaign. The Stronger campaign builds on Riky’s legacy by promoting awareness of mental well-being and facilitating financial support for individuals and organisations working in the field of mental health and wellbeing. For the campaign, the Foundation used Riky’s social media posts to create a track titled Stronger which was released on the 14th of June, check it out here: #StrongerRikyRick
Riky’s love for family, art in all its forms and for young people will be emulated through the Foundation’s various projects and initiatives. The Foundation hopes to move people through love and creativity as we navigate the challenges we encounter as humanity by merging arts, culture and activism. Stay tuned to the Foundation’s activities on its social media platforms: Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. Please download the Panda Mental Health App here: https://www.joinpanda.com/ for access to mental health support services in community and individually.