This project provides weekly art classes to Vietnamese children living in poverty with the goal to inspire and empower them to complete their education, and to help them find their own voice and explore their strengths and individuality. Through both our teacher and peer-to-peer mentoring, we provide our students with the support to develop their self esteem and confidence; all necessary for their future educational success.
Poor, young students have difficult daily lives by having to work to support their families and try to stay in school, with little opportunity to be creative and expressive as individuals. In Vietnamese schools, art classes are only provided up through the 5th grade, and in these classes students are taught strict technical skills. Youth who are passionate about art, do not have the opportunity to be educated in the arts outside of school, in a freely, creative, and mentoring environment.
By providing students an avenue for self-expression, we offer temporary relief from rigorous school schedules and difficult life situations. This project offers the students the means in which they can express themselves in a stress free environment while building lifelong skills and relationships. Our teachers act as mentors to our students, and know and understand the needs and family situations of every student in order to support them outside of class as well.
Studies have shown that youth who are engaged in extracurricular arts programs are far more likely to excel and remain in school. This project will provide bi-weekly art classes to 60 students year round as well as summer art and music camps for 150 ethnic minority Vietnamese children.