10 minutes with: Philanthrobeats


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Tess Milligan
Writer

Guardian: How did Philanthrobeats get started?

Philanthrobeats: An unfortunate naming game in the pub, we had previously done a one-off fundraiser for Amnesty International at the time, and then myself and a couple of other people decided that it might work as a regular thing, but with different charities, so we had to kind of come up with a name that would convey both those things and I came up with the name Philanthrobeats. That’s where it all came from. I was fairly heavily involved with some charities any way and kind of thought that the way charities fundraised was particularly kind of ineffective and we wanted to throw good events that people wanted to go to, but that would also raise money for other organisations.

Guardian: What do you do besides running Philanthrobeats?

Philanthrobeats:   I work as a project development worker at Govan Craigton Integration Network, basically me and someone else run a kind of like small charity that focuses on integrating new migrants in Govan, which is an interesting job.

Guardian: What are your main aims?

Philanthrobeats: We’re our own kind of registered body, so it originally started as us wanting to raise money for other charities and throw good events, but after doing it for about a year and a half we wanted to see where the money went and with a lot of Charites there’s sometimes a lot of waste. We decided to do our own projects so that it be a lot more time efficient.

Guardian: Who do you both hope to reach through your efforts?

Philanthrobeats: I guess there’s two demographics: there’s people who would go to these kind of events anyway, and people who might interested in supporting local charities. I think for non-profits to remain kind of relevant they need to engage with other demographics. So basically we’d like to encourage people to go to a charity event that wouldn’t normally go to a charity event. Charity fundraisers are generally thrown together, and I think that’s a stupid way of raising money because you might as well ask someone for money directly. I don’t think that’s the future of fundraising, I think its organising an even that people would generally want to go to.

Guardian: Have you been affiliated with any other charities? What charities have you both worked with previously?

Philanthrobeats: We give a lot of support, except from the financial support that we give to other charities, also support we give when we can, so that’s like event planning, getting a DJ, or whatever we can. We used to be affiliate with amnesty international, and that was because a member of our board was in the student society a couple of years ago, and we’ve thrown their secret policeman’s ball after party for the past couple of years. Myself and one of the founders used to work at the Scottish Refugee Council, so we’re kind of closely associated with them, as well. We get quite a lot of requests from other charities for help, and we do help wherever we can.

Guardian: Your site also emphasise the importance of grass root movements, or community playing a role in the work you do?

Philanthrobeats: In terms of grass-roots organisations we are a grass-roots organisation, by all accounts. I think its important that grass-roots organisations contuinue to work and gorw. I’m a big kind of beliver in comonity development and one of the kind of key issues in that is consulting the community as to what they want to do and empowering them to do that. I thnk especially now that communities are more important than ever with the desemination of support networks throughout the UK.

Guardian: What events are you currently planning? I know that there’s the Clubbing media project, music classes and asylum seekers support on the website.

Philanthrobeats: There’s been various deaths from dodgy ecstacy pills over the past year or so. We saw all kinds of involved parties act in a way which I  really don’t think is progressive and is pretty harmful. From my point of view its maybe about the dangers that are out there now, in terms of unregulated drug use and kind of the way that we police these issueds, but that’s my own personal bias. The poject is going to consult a lot of people who run the night life in Glasgow and other relevant organisaitons.

We’ve got six children who are being taught six different instruments. It’s going on indefinitely and we’re going to help as many people as we can to learn to play instruments.

We pay for the art supplies for an asylum seekers’ collage classes, but we also pay for emergency accommodation, or food. Out support there is kind of varied. People are in the process of creating new projects all the time, as well.

There’s also a social enterprise beer which we’re planning to launch on the 14th of February.

Guardian: What can people do to help? What jobs are there for volunteers?

Philanthrobeats: We meet every two weeks at a bar called the Still which is in Finnieston, but we also have a Facebook group. It doesn’t cost anything to become a member, you just search Philanthrobeats members on Facebook. Either join the Facebook group, come to tone of the meetings, or just send me an email!