Mentees selected from PUMA x Red Rat mentorship programme

Published: Thu 21 Nov 2019 10:23 AM
November 2019
PUMA, in partnership with streetwear retailer Red Rat, has announced the three successful applicants of the 2019 PUMA x RED RAT Mentorship programme. The programme gives Kiwis looking to break into the industries of music, dance or street art an exciting opportunity to learn from New Zealand’s leading talent.
Award winning rap artist MELODOWNZ has selected 19-year-old Mahima Ihitai Taurima Mane-Chapman as his mentee. Originally from Kaitaia, Mahima saw the mentorship programme as an opportunity to get his music out there and learn from someone he respects as a role model.
Maria Victoria Medina Villapol who is originally from Venezuela has been chosen as Bianca Ikinofo’s dance mentee. Passionate about spreading her culture and telling stories through dance, the 20-year-old wants to focus on growing her skills and gaining greater understanding of her own movement and style over the course of the mentorship.
Accomplished graffiti and street artist duo Charles and Janine Williams chose multi-disciplinary artist Ushy Ushy as their mentee. The 36-year-old shares Charles and Janine’s passion for sharing art with a wide audience, working across a variety of mediums, from installations and murals, to digital artwork and gallery paintings.
The mentors will work with their chosen mentees over the next three months to develop their crafts and learn valuable skills that they can take forward into the rest of their careers.
To conclude the three-month mentorship and showcase the journey of each mentee PUMA and Red Rat will host a closing party in 2020.
Keep up with the mentors and mentees on Instagram:
•CHOSEN MENTEE - Mahima Ihitai Taurima Mane-Chapman: @emcea_
•MENTOR - Bianca Ikinofo: @biancaikinofo
•CHOSEN MENTEE - Maria Victoria Medina Villapol: @vickyfromven
•MENTORS: Charles Williams: @charles_phat1tmd and Janine Williams: @janine_divatmd
•MENTEE: Ushy Ushy: @ushy_ushy
For more information on the programme, mentors and mentees, visit and keep an eye on Instagram @redratclothing.
PUMA is one of the world’s leading Sports Brands, designing, developing, selling and marketing footwear, apparel and accessories. For 70 years, PUMA has relentlessly pushed sport and culture forward by creating fast products for the world’s fastest athletes. PUMA offers performance and sport-inspired lifestyle products in categories such as Football, Running and Training, Basketball, Golf, and Motorsports. It collaborates with renowned designers and brands to bring sport influences into street culture and fashion. The PUMA Group owns the brands PUMA, Cobra Golf and stichd. The company distributes its products in more than 120 countries, employs more than 13,000 people worldwide, and is headquartered in Herzogenaurach/Germany. For more information, please visit
Red Rat is New Zealand’s largest retailer of streetwear. It has been selling the world's biggest brands like PUMA, adidas, Nike and Converse to the masses for more than 15 years as well as quality homeware and health products under their own brand, Homie. Red Rat has been inspired by the firm belief that everyone deserves to look their best and should have access to the products and brands that they love. It offers all customers credit options, highlighting that no matter who they are or where they're from, there’s something for everyone. There are 14 Red Rat stores across New Zealand. For more information, please visit

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