Street smarts to empower young hearts: welcome to The Street University

16th Jun 2021

Cover image for Street smarts to empower young hearts: welcome to The Street University

Randy Glazer is the Manager at The Street University Liverpool, a Ted Noffs Foundation initiative which is designed to reach young people who would not otherwise engage with mainstream pathways of self-development. He chats to Humanitix about his journey and how Hip Hop culture can be used to empower youth in need.

Tell us about yourself and Street University

I’m a Brooklyn NY native, who has lived in Australia since 2000. Since arriving, I’ve been active in the music industry, managing and touring high profile Hip Hop acts, as well as producing and presenting Hip Hop radio shows on some of the biggest radio stations in Aus. In 2012 I started working for The Ted Noffs Foundation as a youth worker. I’m now the Manager of The Street University Liverpool, and most recently the manager for our latest virtual youth centre, Street Uni LIVE. The Street University was launched by Chuck D of Public Enemy just over a decade ago. There are now 8 Street Universities around NSW, ACT and QLD. The program is aimed at disadvantaged young people aged 12–25 and works as both a non-residential drug treatment service and also more broadly as a therapeutic space for young people.

What was your path to where you are now?

I grew up in a pretty rough neighborhood of Brooklyn NY, to a family that, although loving in nature, dealt with its share of complexities.

In the concrete jungle it was normal to be surrounded by hurdles such as addiction, poverty, violence, and more.

When I was still a lost young man at the age of 20, my journey led me to jumping on a plane to live halfway around the world in Australia, as a new father. Music had always been my number one passion, and now music was once again responsible for helping me survive through hard times. It helped me form a new family in a foreign land and ultimately helped me feed my family and pay my bills. After a number of years achieving great success in the music industry, I decided that I wanted to give back to the community. That’s when I contacted The Street University and was asked to come out to Mt Druitt for a job interview. The rest is history…

Randy Glazer

Why is it so important to connect with youth through music, graffiti workshops and radio?

I have always been a believer in the fact that Hip Hop culture, when used properly, has the power to educate and save lives. It focuses your energy on creative expression, and away from the negativity that floods our streets.

What services are available and how can youth in need access these?

The Street University now has 8 centres around Australia plus an online community for those who may not be able to easily access the physical centres. All a young person needs to do is reach out via email, phone, on DM via our socials or in person at one of our centres. Once you reach out, you will be greeted by some of the most caring, skilled staff and crew in the business.

We are here to help you grow into the best version of yourself.

Whether that be through taking part in our various creative or life skill-based workshops, booking in sessions with our counsellors, or just meeting people on a similar journey in a safe space… It’s all free. The payment needed is the most valuable of all: your time and energy.

Why is the Humanitix model important to you?

Ted Noffs & Humantix work so well together because our organisations’ values are aligned. We are both results-driven, but not at the expense of doing what we know is right in our hearts. We care about community. About people. About making the world a better place for everyone.

The Street University LIVE Official Launch

The Official Launch of The Street University LIVE will be a live-streamed event from 5pm -9pm (AEST) on June 21st 2020. You can register for free here.

Featuring performances by:

The Street University and Noffs

Jenny Chung
Jenny Chung

Chief of Staff at Humanitix

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