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The Rainbow Academy, situated in the Central Business District of Cape Town, has mobilized over 400 scholarships between 2010 and 2019 among underprivileged youth, aged 18-25, from the predominantly and historically disadvantaged Coloured and Black communities within the “Cape Flats” communities, such as Mitchells Plain, Mannenberg, Langa, Gugulethu, Kayelitsha, Retreat, Paarl and Nyanga, in the Western Cape, South Africa.
Well-known to these areas, are the of sub-economic social and living conditions where human rights violations and crime are rampant. Furthermore, youth from these areas are only afforded few, if any, access and opportunity for tertiary education, employment and the development of sustainable careers within the performing arts, culture, heritage and creative industries.
Various government and provincial bodies, such as The National Arts Council, The Department of Economic Development, The Department of Arts and Culture, The Department of Cultural Affairs and Sport and The Western Cape Department of Education have endorsed the skills acquisition and qualifications’ programme offered by the academy. The Academy provides qualifications in the gap between matric and entry into tertiary institutions in South Africa (NQF Level 3-4), thereby addressing the most dire area of skills training needed in the youth unemployment market.
The Rainbow Academy has successfully initiated joint initiatives with business, NPO and government stakeholders, such as music festivals, performances and public arts programmes in the Cape Town City centre in order to introduce & promote new platforms of mutually beneficial "business and arts" collaborations and opportunities. These initiatives also aimed to promote cultural tourism and activation of public performance programmes such as street theatre and busking in the city centre. Further aims included public engagement of the arts, promotion of SA and Cape Town music, heritage and culture and engagement of new businesses as partners to the Rainbow Academy.