Rapper Nick Brewer is releasing a new poem to inspire young people to think about their relationships and the commitment they need to thrive in life.  The UK rapper and spoken word artist, who had a top 20 hit in 2015, is reflecting on what commitment means to him and encouraging others to do the same.

In the poem, he shares how being committed starts with a commitment to yourself and means sticking by someone when things get tough.  He encourages young people to work out who they want to be, know their limits and know what’s right for them.

From this, he shares what good commitment looks like - someone who respects your choices, sticks with you through the tough times and wants the best for you. The East London artist, who also campaigns for mental health and social change, stresses the importance of feeling secure in yourself, working hard and not tolerating any form of abusive behaviour.

Nick said:

“When I rap, I always want to think about what my experience has been, what mistakes I’ve made, maybe what things I’ve learnt from. A word like commitment is quite a loaded word and can mean loads of different things, so I have to think about - what would I hope commitment looks like if I was giving it to someone and what would I expect? So that’s the approach I took when working on this poem. It’s a letter to my younger self and I hope that other people can relate to what I’m talking about.

“I think thinking about commitment at a younger age is a good thing to do, to think about what’s important to me, what people and what things I want in my life, where do I see myself going, what do I see myself doing and who do I want to be surrounded by when I’m doing it? If you think of it with commitment in mind, you can potentially make the right choice and not waste your time or let things go that you might regret later in life"

“It’s so important to think about commitment since the world we live in now moves so fast - people are always changing, what’s fashionable is changing, what’s popular is changing. It’s good to have solid foundations. I can think of people in my life who’ve been there the majority of my adult life and some of those relationships have been hard work, but when you work hard at something that’s when something really powerful and really special is built. It’s a challenge to go against the grain and to be committed to someone or thing in whatever form it takes, but I think it’s rewarding and important - especially for young people today.”

The video of Nick performing his poem shared by the charity FASTN to empower young people to think about what a healthy, positive and committed relationship is for them, why it matters and what it takes. It’s hoped that the poem will encourage young people to reflect on what commitment means to them, so they can talk about this in their networks. The poem also gives service providers and youth organisations an opportunity to consider how they support young people’s positive relationship ambitions for life.

FASTN encourages youth organisations and service providers to consider how they support young people to reflect on and achieve their positive relationship ambition, in the same way they’d get help to achieve their career ambitions.

FASTN surveyed over 1,000 teenagers and key findings from this research showed that:

79% said a lasting relationship is just as important to them as their career ambitions.
72% wanted relationship education to help them achieve their relationship goals.
56% said forming lasting relationships is harder now than it was for previous generations.
62% said that a significant challenge to form a committed relationship is that people want to have a happy relationship immediately, but commitment takes time and effort.

Catherine Hine, CEO of FASTN added:

“Nick’s poem brings alive what we know is a key ingredient in healthy lasting relationships, which young people tell us really matter to them in life. Neuroscience shows that dependable, healthy and nurturing relationships in all their forms, support our improved health, wellbeing and reduce the risk of poverty. That’s why it’s vital to help young people think about the right relationships for them and access the right support to achieve their relationship ambitions. Our research shows that young people don’t want luck to determine if they reach their relationship goals – they want help to get there. We hope that others will follow Nick's lead in considering how they inspire young people to reflect on their relationship ambitions for life and the ingredients needed to achieve these ambitions.”