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what we do

Why Kids?

Kids Create Change utilizes art-based storytelling to promote social-emotional development, sociocultural awareness and social justice learning in young people.  Young people are increasingly at the forefront of social activism on a local and global level.  They are today's change makers and our hope for a better future.  It is vital that foundational social justice learning begin in early childhood and include opportunities that:

  1. foster imagination and creativity in order to be able to envision the possibilities of a just society

  2. cultivate caring, compassion and empathy 

  3. introduce concepts of equity and justice using vocabulary and curricula that meet developmental and social-emotional needs

  4. encourage critical thinking and explore self-advocacy and activism in its many different forms 

 

What We Value

We believe that storytelling through the arts is a powerful vehicle for fostering imagination, creativity and empathy which are essential tools for valuing our own identities, seeing things from multiple perspectives, and understanding experiences other than our own.  

 

What We Do

We create and facilitate programs that use multimedia, sensory-based storytelling to center identity, culture, community and care.  Our programs are available off-site in schools and community centers, as well as on-site at the Studio 3 Community Art Studio & Gallery located at 617C Grove St. in downtown Evanston.

Art in Action Program

ETHOS Program - Launching 2022 

How We Do It

We partner with schools, community groups, and organizations to develop creative, collaborative approaches to equity and social justice work.  In addition to our youth programming, this work includes art-based professional development and workshops with the educators, parents, guardians, mental health professionals, community and social service workers who support the social-emotional development, sociocultural awareness, and social justice learning of our young people.

Why Us

Our programs are developed and facilitated by socially-engaged artists, board-certified and registered art therapists, mental health counselors, educators and community activists.   We recognize that this work involves a holistic approach that can involve the social, emotional, physical, psychological and spiritual aspects of our selves.  We focus on relationship building and meaningful connections to promote collective healing and care.  Our programming is developmentally informed, culturally relevant, inclusive of diverse backgrounds and abilities, equitable in access, sensitive to emotional and psychological concerns, grounded in antiracist and healing justice practices, and move beyond trauma informed care to healing centered engagement.  

'Every major social movement throughout time has integrated art and activism.'

Steve Lambert

Center for Artistic Activism

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We create culturally responsive, social-emotional art programs for young people.  This work centers on utilizing art making and storytelling to:

  1. ​explore individual and collective history and identity​

  2. share and honor lived experiences

  3. make meaningful connections and foster positive relationships

  4. ​encourage creativity to build community and effect social change

Our activities include:

  1. school programs that are culturally responsive models for social-emotional development and DEIA in the arts

  2. community projects and events that include collective art making, storytelling, public art exhibition and participatory art installations 

  3. art making and story crafting workshops (single event and multi day/week programming) centered on antiracism and social justice work with young people

  4. professional development for educators and mental health practitioners, in-services for businesses and organizations, parent workshops, and community events that raise awareness and encourage civic action

The Power of Narrative

Storytelling is the social and cultural activity of sharing narratives, and has existed throughout time and across cultures as a form of documentation, communication, fellowship, education and entertainment.  Stories are a powerful tool to better understanding one’s neighbors, community, and society.  The sharing of personal stories encourages understanding and connection, a chance to walk in each other’s shoes and see things from a different perspective.  

We believe that empathy is the the building block for creating a community; cognitive, emotional, compassionate, and historical empathy.  It's what connects us as neighbors, and encourages us to be mindful of one another, to take care of each other. Empathy is what compels us to take action and create change in the world around us.​

We harness the power of the narrative to promote empathy; sharing stories as a way to break down barriers and move beyond stereotypes.  We utilize oral, aural, written and visual storytelling to promote dialogue and shared experiences in the community.

why art and story?

 

'Art helps us identify with one another and expands our notion of we - from the local to the global.'

Olafur Elaisson

'The story is a machine for empathy. In contrast to logic or reason, a story is about emotion that gets staged over a sequence of dramatic moments, so you empathize with the characters without really thinking about it too much. It is a really powerful tool for imagining yourself in other people's situations.'

Ira Glass

The Power of Art

Art is a form of narrative that both embodies and transcends history and culture.  It is a language that is both universal and inclusive, and a vehicle for communication and exchange.

Art has the ability to make seen what is often overlooked.  To make heard what is often silenced.  We believe that art can promote awareness, encourage discourse, incite action, and inspire change.  Art opens us up to different perspectives and endless possibilities.  It is another tool for developing empathy and empathy is what compels us to take action and create change.​

We mobilize the power of art to address injustice in our communities.  Through the act of making art, sharing art, and engaging others in these activities we are able to use creativity to ask questions, to promote dialogue, and to generate solutions.

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