13/11/18

A young Aussie rapper who once ran afoul of the law will perform at the Inspiration breakfast launching the Belgravia Foundation in NSW tomorrow

Under the stage name of D Minor, Daniel Harvey will perform some of the hip hop songs that reflect his experiences growing up homeless in Sydney.

Daniel is living proof of Belgravia Leisure’s policy of giving people a second chance. He was given a job as lifeguard at swimming pools in the City of Canada Bay Council area, despite personal challenges over the years that led him to have several brushes with the authorities.

The Belgravia Foundation’s chief executive officer, Dr Jeff Walkley, said Belgravia Leisure gave approval for Daniel to be employed after his character shone through in a review of his case by all levels of management.

“Daniel's a great example where, through circumstances beyond his control, he become homeless and then survived on the streets. That then meant that he ran afoul of the law in the way that he chose to survive at that stage,” Dr Walkley said.

“We have a national police check system in which any person that comes up with notifiable elements is looked at on a case-by-case basis because we recognise that people do need help and we believe that we're in a position to be able to contribute in that way,” Dr Walkley added.

Daniel says he applied for the Belgravia Leisure lifeguard job because the hours would also enable him to pursue his passion, hip hop. He recalls that when he handed in his employment forms, he had to tell his Belgravia Leisure Manager about his history with the authorities.

“I had to just explain to my manager the situation, that many years ago I lived in foster homes and refuges, and that it all played a part in my situation. Then he passed it on to the CEO, and I’m thankful it was approved.”

Daniel has vindicated the decision to hire him, says Belgravia Leisure’s Area Manager David Burns, who points out that the rapper has been an exemplary employee. “Daniel has provided great support for our manager in the Canada Bay Council pools area and he is an extremely humble guy.”

Daniel says he loves hip hop music because it speaks to his experience growing up homeless.

“Ever since I was young, music was therapy for me, whenever I went to foster homes and then refuges I’d always just chuck on headphones and have a notepad and it would just be my escape,” Daniel says.

Among the songs that Daniel will perform at the launch of the Belgravia Foundation Inspiration Breakfast at Waterview in Bicentennial Park tomorrow, will be one called Concrete Pillow. Promoted on the Kyle & Jackie O show, the song can be purchased on Apple Music, Spotify and Amazon.

“It’s a song that speaks about what I’ve been through and my journey. It’s been years in the making,” Daniel says. “I create my music to raise awareness. This song is about raising awareness for homeless. I try and create content that’s not meaningless, but which brings awareness, openness, and sheds light on situations.”

Daniel is grateful to Belgravia Leisure.

“It’s great that they’re giving me a second chance, they’re not judging someone by their past and what they’ve been through; they’re open to giving second chances.”

Belgravia Foundation’s charitable purpose is to:

  • provide programs, services and education that promote access to leisure, sport, aquatics, recreation and fitness activities in community facilities to promote the relief of poverty, disadvantage or distress among people who experience disability, poverty, inequity or denial in access to and benefit from involvement in programs and services that contribute to quality of life, health, social harmony, social connection, public welfare and community participation.

The Belgravia Foundation is a registered public benevolent institution charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (ACNC), with deductible gift recipient status with the Australian Tax Office (ATO).