WHAT IS AGENTS OF CHANGE?
Agents of Change is a culturally relevant arts education curriculum that incorporates naturalist knowledge into an experiential educational survey of the five elements of Hip Hop. Agents of Change ties in the exploration of the natural world with the arts through provocative dialogue and creative learning to engage marginalized youth in cultural practices, character development, and teamwork. It has been shown that strong correlations between both culturally-responsive arts and nature education can significantly: 1) Decrease the rates of ADHD, hyperactivity disorder that disproportionately affects people of color; 2) Reduce violence and recidivism; and 3) Improve mental health, school engagement, and self-confidence.
The curriculum takes places in 6-hour sessions over a period of 5 days. To support the next generation of environmental leadership, our program will offer a $100 artist-in-residence stipend to all youth who will participate. As a deliverable for the stipend, by the end of the week youth will create an art piece related to what they’ve learned that can be used to share their experience and educate others. In addition to hands-on instruction and time to create art in an outdoor environment, we will also facilitate dialogues between youth participants and large environmental NGOs like Greenpeace and Sierra Club to bring awareness about the environmental challenges that communities of color face. The program will be held at several East Bay Regional Parks locations. The 10-12 youth participants in 7th, 8th, and 9th grade will be recruited by HH4C through its MC program that is already operating in Oakland School Districts.
Increase access to culturally-responsive and nature education for marginalized youth
Equip youth with a deeper understanding of how ecological systems and climate change are relevant to them and their communities
Foster confidence in learning and nature exploration, including an ability to meet challenges
Expand Hip Hop’s cultural responsibility in the Environmental sector
Train 10 marginalized youth to be creative and environmental innovators
Student-produced artwork will be displayed in EBRPD Visitors Centers
80% of students will participate in a final performance
Facilitate 4+ exchanges between large environmental NGOs and marginalized communities
Agents Of Change is held annually in the summer. The application cycle opens every June and ends early July. It is held in the Bay Area, California in the regional parks districts in Oakland and San Francisco.
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