Creative Time at the YWCA
Arguably, most everyone likes Friday. The end of the week, the start of the weekend… what’s not to like? For student-artists at the YWCA’s Park Road campus, Friday is a time to learn and create through The Arts Empowerment Project’s Free Art Friday.
Volunteers, visiting artists and partnering arts organizations organize workshops, activities and other hands-on creative opportunities that provide participating students exposure to visual and performing arts.
“Free Art Friday hopes to empower children by helping them make connections to lessons in the classroom and community through the arts,” said Natalie Frazier Allen, Founder and CEO of The Arts Empowerment Project.
Learning centers at the YWCA focus on reading skills so the majority of Free Art Fridays have been focused on the idea of story telling. Students have had the opportunity to watch plays, meet local actors, create their own stories, and learn about the different ways in which they can share a story.
The YWCA offers a safe place and learning centers for children K-5 to boost reading skills and education. Allen said a percentage of the students at the YWCA are at-risk, and are therefore at the heart of The Arts Empowerment Project’s mission to provide workshops and classes that will further develop children’s character, learning, and positive self-expression.
Beyond storytelling activities, students created clay vases in collaboration with volunteers from Clayworks, participated in holiday family workshops with The Community School of the Arts, and enjoyed admission to local museums. Upcoming programming will focus on creating more tangible work that can eventually be displayed throughout the community.
Free Art Friday is wholly run and supported by volunteers and donor support. Keep up the good work with a donation or by volunteering your talent and time with The Arts Empowerment Project’s Free Art Friday. (links)