David Gibbs Traveling to South Africa


David Gibbs and his wife Sherrie, Brian Hickman Executive Director of the Glassmen and Michael Zapanta famed videographer who has been instrumental in filming drum corps in the United states will be traveling to South Africa to take part in the National Championship of the Field Band Foundation and their 10th anniversary celebrations.

The Blue Devils hope that this trip will make it possible to establish partnerships between our organization, Drum Corps International and The Field Band Foundation.

On the first day they will tour the FBF office and take part in the CD Launch and 10th Anniversary Celebrations at Turffontein Race Course.

The second day all will take part in the First Division Championships – 7 field bands, less than 2 years old and solo competition in all the different disciplines (Brass, Percussion, Steel drums, marimbas and dance). In the evening March for 15 field bands will take place. The groups hope to march past Madiba’s house in Houghton. The guest will spend the evening at Bertie Lubner’s home. He is the Founder and Life President of FBF. Mr. Lubner is one of the owners and directors of the PG GROUP – now retired. He is involved in many charities but also still represents SA at the World Economic Forum. The PG Group donated significant money in 1997 to start the Field Band Foundation. Mr. Lubner still attends all board meetings and has remained very active in the Foundation.

On Saturday will be opening ceremonies and performance of the Kroonstad SANDF Band. Then the National Championships Festival – 8 field bands, 2 years and older compete in 12 minute presentations.For the final performance the Norwegian School band from Trømso will perform. The Prize Giving will finish up the day. Guests will spend the evening at Brian Gibson’s home, who will be the Chairman of FBF until the 27th September when he reverts to Deputy Chairman and Herman Mashaba takes over for him.

About The Field Band Foundation:

The Field Band Foundation creates lifetime opportunities for the youth of South Africa through the discipline and creativity of music and movement. They build self-esteem, develop life skills and nurture future leaders.

The Field Band concept is built on the global youth activity known otherwise as show bands. This specific discipline was chosen first for the long historic presence of brass music in South African communities. This activity also allows for large group participation. All 24 projects of the Foundation have a minimum of 125 youths actively involved.

The FBF is an innovative, imaginative and exciting organization with a strong track record for youth development through music and dance. The target audience is disadvantaged youth who come from communities where unemployment is high and access to youth-oriented educational activities are limited. The average rate of unemployment of the parents of our members is 57,3%. Our members come from households where 41.2% live with both parents and 58.8% with single parents/grandparents or guardians. Our members’ average age is 14.6 years old and over 80% had not had access to music/arts education before they joined the FBF. The Foundation presently has 3626 members from 257 schools in 133 townships. 45.9% are males and 54.1% are female.

The FBF supports the UN Millennium Goals by addressing six of the goals:

Reduce poverty: 57.3% of our members’ parents are unemployed. Our first priority is to break the cycles of generational poverty by providing youth with useful skills. South Africa has a growing tourism industry providing many opportunities for our members to either be employed or to exercise their entrepreneurial spirit.

Gender Issues: The FBF includes gender equality in our core values and we practice these values daily. It is also addressed in a Module in our Life skills program.

HIV/AIDS prevention: The Foundation has an extensive program in place in partnership with Aganang, a World Health Organization accredited NGO. Our focus is on prevention and information. The HIV epidemic will not be stopped in Africa unless a comprehensive holistic education program is in place to support information about HIV prevention. Information itself is not enough! Our members need a reason to change their behavior and by providing them with a renewed view of their own future they are more inclined to behavior change.

Global Partnerships: Global partnerships are essential for the developing world. The Foundation has been very fortunate to develop two programs with the Netherlands and the USA and an extensive partnership with Norway.

Improve Education: The FBF encourages academic excellence and school participation.

Sustainable Environment: The focus is on protecting the environment around us.

More info can be found on http://www.fieldband.org.za/ 

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