Bob Marley’s Legacy Lives On In The One Love Youth Camp

June 11, 2019

Young people at the One Love Youth Camp in Jamaica

One love. One heart. One wildly euphoric ice cream flavor.

When we launched Bob Marley’s One Love in 2017 we knew it was bound to be a hit. And we were right — fans went bananas for this tropical concoction. And when they voted to bring it back in 2018, we can’t say we were surprised. Bananas, caramel, graham crackers, fudge — it’s a rockin’ flavor combo.

Young people at the One Love Youth Camp in Jamaica

The Man, The Myth, The Legend

But the magic of One Love goes further than those caramel and graham cracker swirls. One Love honors the life and legacy of Bob Marley, iconic musician and activist. Throughout his life he spread the philosophy of loving your fellow humans, connecting with your roots, and fighting for equality for all.

Today, his message lives on in the One Love Youth Camp held at Tapioca Village in St. Mary, Jamaica. Since 2015, the 30th anniversary of Marley’s Legend album, the One Love Youth Camp has been a creative refuge for many of Jamaica’s underserved youth. The camp is held each July, and will celebrate its 5th season this summer.

Young people at the One Love Youth Camp in Jamaica

Where Creativity Comes To Life

Each year, staff and teens aged 13 to 18  years old come together for a week of music, art, empowerment, and self-expression. The campers come primarily from inner-city Kingston, including Trenchtown, the underserved neighborhood where Marley spent much of his youth. Some also come from St. Ann, Marley’s birthplace. For the vast majority, going to camp is the first time they will leave their neighborhood in Kingston.

Over the course of the week, campers participate in arts workshops such as drumming, dancing, singing, and visual arts, and connect with their natural surroundings through nature walks and river walks. It’s an opportunity for them to take risks, develop skills, and express themselves creatively in a safe environment.

Young people at the One Love Youth Camp in Jamaica

As one camper says, “Before camp I didn’t have the courage I have now. It has opened my eyes to different possibilities, seeing and interacting with different people.” Each year, campers from the program perform at Bob Marley’s Earthstrong celebration in Kingston on February 6th, showing off their musical skills and fostering a sense of pride and accomplishment.

The camp’s staff are teachers, community workers, artists, and mentors who dedicate their lives to supporting young people. Some of the camp’s alumni youth are even staff members now.

Young people at the One Love Youth Camp in Jamaica

Spread The Love

The One Love Youth Camp is made possible by the Bob Marley Foundation, Partners For Youth Empowerment, and the proceeds from sales of Ben & Jerry’s One Love ice cream. Want to help ensure that this life-changing camp experience can continue? Donate now to Partners For Youth Empowerment!

Whatever the size, your donation will have huge real-world impacts for the One Love Youth Camp. Contributions will cover the venue, transportation, staff training and supplies, and much more.

One love. One heart. Together we can keep the legacy of Bob Marley alive for generations to come.