TURNING TABLES: Voice to the Voiceless

Turning Tables is an international NGO committed to establishing, and maintaining permanent musical production facilities for DJ’ing, rap, and beat making for marginalized youth in the Developing World. “The aim is to start a process of reflection and self-empowerment by giving youth a space where they can express their travesties, hopes, and dreams in a non-violent manner,” says Turning Tables Founder and Director Martin F. Jakobson.

In 2009, Martin was living in Beirut, and began working in several Palestinian refugee camps across Lebanon. Since then, Turning Tables has expanded its work across the Middle East to Tunisia, Jordan, Libya and Cairo, alongside establishing a presence in Haiti and Cambodia.

Beyond merely conducting workshops to educate youth about musical production, the organization has branched into workshops video production and has collaborated with local music festivals to further enhance the youth’s experience, and empowerment. Turning Tables also commits itself to the training of local staff, to ensure their facilities remain operational with the intention of self-sufficiency down the road.

Currently, Turning Tables is conducting an international online fundraising campaign for Cambodian street youth, many of whom are former child prostitutes. “Our expectation is that, with the fundraising campaign, will be able to train about 800 vulnerable Cambodian kids for a year, and create a strong outreach program to reach more at-risk youth.” — Martin Jakobson (Founder + Director)

This photo essay takes you to Turning Tables on site locations of Tunisia, Haiti, Libya, Cambodia and Egypt, displaying the many areas, and countless youth who have been powered through their inspired mission. Connect with Turning Tables here, and check out their crowd funded effort for the Cambodian youth on indiegogo.

ANDREW BRIDGE is a global enthusiast with a passion for the road less traveled. As a frequent collaborator with World Hip Hop Market and Nomadic Wax, Andrew has worked with numerous socially conscious artists from around the world in the pursuit of inspiring cultural understanding and exchange through entertainment. This fascination with the world at large has taken him to over 20 countries (so far) through studying, volunteering, and writing about his travels, with no signs of slowing his globetrotting nature down. Connect with Andrew at @Bridgin_TheGap