Social Entrepreneur Spotlight: Rob Jackson of Beats Rhymes & LifeOctober 24, 2023
Beats Rhymes & Life, part of New Profit’s Mental Health Equity Catalyze Cohort of Social Entrepreneurs, aims to cultivate dynamic culturally-congruent services, through the therapeutic power of Hip Hop, that inspires youth to recognize their own capacity for healing.
To help us get closer to Beats Rhymes & Life’s work, Executive Officer & Co-Founder Rob Jackson took time to share a bit about his leadership and why youth always need a seat at the table when it comes to their mental health.
Q: What is the one thing you wish more people knew about the issue your organization is working to solve?
A: The impact that we have had on mental health systems and how we have revolutionized mental health service delivery. I wish people understood more about how equitable access to therapy is vital to the success and well being of our communities. I wish people understood that we are investing in these youth regardless. That investment is greater when it’s done with prevention.
Q: What has been the most fulfilling part of the work that you do?
A: The youth reaching their promise and potential through participating in our services. And then training with the org, becoming staff and then providing services. I’m proud of the impact we have had on some of the biggest mental health organizations/systems in the US.
Q: What would have to be true for the work that you do to not be needed?
A: All these questions are dope and I’d love to answer all of them. I chose the first because I’ve often discussed the possibility of living in a world where BRL is not needed. Leaders who are entrenched in their power need to relinquish it. Youth should always be given a seat at the table. Health in general (mental, physical and emotional) of our citizens should be the focus and priority….not profit.
Q: How would you describe your leadership style?
A: I have a democratic leadership style. Very much a lead from the back person. And while validation is important to me, accolades are not. I believe in giving all my staff an opportunity to step up in leadership positions.