The belief that art has the power to connect communities, to heal, to allow us that space to grow and touch our humanity. The power to change our world, one experience, one story, one class one friendship at a time.
Through thoughtfully prepared and crafted curriculum, students get to engage with community in a playful yet meaningful way, which will enable deeper understanding of other people’s experience. Students will develop skills and tap into their power by understanding their story in a greater context. This space is much more than just a learning space, It is a space for: healing, encouraging, learning and lighting our fire.
Live programs to date:
pARTicipate in ACTION (Immigrant KYR workshops)
pARTicipate in Conversation
pARTicipate in Worker Rights (coming soon)
pARTicipate in action
PARTICIPATE IN ACTION is a specific KNOW YOUR RIGHTS program where students learn about their rights actively participating, while keeping their hands busy deep in clay. This highly therapeutic medium is powerful as it also enables you to learn in a different way so that the information stays in permanent memory. Students understand the legal content because they are able to process the information through storytelling, examples and dialogue.
The program was created as a response to the sad fact that vulnerable communities don’t understand their rights. Our undocumented population in NYC is in the millions and entrenched deeply in the roots of this city. Most families are considered mixed status families, yet they still don’t know what to do if an ICE agent shows up in their door.
Classes are executed in spaces where even students mere presence challenges their notion of “place” and “belonging”. If the community feels safer in their own space, the workshops can be crafted to fit their needs.
Getting a wet lump of clay and converting it into whatever your mind can imagine, is a incredibly powerful concept. When you dig your hands in the clay, using your brain in a kinesthetic way, you are producing endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin. Studies have shown that stress and cortisol greatly decreases after a short time engaging with clay.
It isn’t often that our immigrant communities get to have a space for themselves, to harness their power. When students are first given the endless possibility of creating “whatever they want”, they feel overwhelmed and some even stressed. After digging into the clay the beauty is unleashed, conversation ensues, some let their hands tell the story while others meticulously observe and think. Most often student share stories of their youth and memories of dirt in their native country.
This space becomes sacred for all students. Once that space is created, legal knowledge can be introduced. It is taught in a relatable way with multiple examples and in a conversational way. Because the students are engaging with their hands, they are able to be less self conscious and ask questions until they master the information.
The process of: IDEA, CREATION, OBSTACLE/FAILURE, final holding an OBJECT, is magical. The process gives students the ability to harness their power and to believe in themselves, which is the important part of a know your rights workshop. When the student is tested for their knowledge it is in real life, and that self assurance is what can decide the fate of my communities.
pARTicipate in Conversation
pARTicipate in Conversation is a new program that taps into the need to connect with others and come together in order to hear each other out and heal. By bringing different communities together, this program will allow a space for those fear walls to come crashing down as first hand stories from immigrants and others come to light while working in clay. The clay work allow people to be calm and tapping into their passive listening or the active speaker, but all together working to connect and recognize that we are not that different from each other.
This program starts in Brooklyn Winter 2019 and in Oklahoma Spring 2019.