We donated to and publicised two fundraising efforts for performers who’d been severely injured. There is no health insurance or workers compensation in the world of busking. JP Mackenzie is a legendary performer who caught a battle axe on the wrong end, splitting his hand open. We helped him raise $11,360 (including $100 from us). And when Mark Beltran lost an eye after being attacked by a gang in Dublin, we helped him raise over $23,000 (including $100 from us).
When Keep Streets Live launched in the UK, we immediately wanted to help. So, we filmed KSL's fundraising video, we filmed their events, we’ve promoted all their fundraising drives and we’ve donated £335 ($450) so far. We’ve also donated to BuskNY and Community Arts Advocates, who do similar work in the U.S.
Promoting Busking to Urbanists
We won an international "placemaking” award in Vienna, showing people that busking has distinct walkability benefits – good for health, community, tourism and the economy. We’ve partnered with the world’s biggest placemaking organisation (the Project for Public Spaces, we brought busking to a UN Habitat placemaking conference in 2014 (paying for flights to go to where all the bigwig urbanists were hanging out), and we were even quoted in a debate in the House of Lords in the UK :)
Helping Buskers Protect Themselves
We embarrassed Ashkenazy Acquisition Corporation and the Faneuil Hall Marketplace Association with our open letter and the negative press we drummed up around their proposed license changes. We did much the same thing in Vancouver. We’ve also worked with busker advocates in Asheville, Dublin, New York, Berlin, Buenos Aires, Rome and many more cities.
Research, Publications and Productions
We’ve submitted freedom of information requests to find out about how (badly) busking policies have worked in the past, we’ve helped researchers and academics, we’ve done research into busking policies in 36 cities around the world, we co-produced a busker festival, we’ve hired buskers for dozens of events, we’ve written a book on the subject, we’re creating a documentary…
...that’s the scope of what you’re funding.
Co-Founder, The Busking Project