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Review of Youth Workshop at Guadalupe, August 23 and August 30, 2008
Dear Collaborators, Supporters and Facilitators,
Convening community with a focus on empowering our youth to lead is not a new concept - the groundwork - the work behind the scenes, is what provides for the amazing and relevant workshop - Convening is a process!
The conversations, the planning, the asking of questions, the discovery, the identification of materials, the research, the gathering of beads, the collecting and cutting of intention sticks, the holistic preparation - is time consuming, tedious and requires perseverance -
To all of you that made the time and will continue - we humbly say thank you with deep gratitude and appreciation. Thank you for an extraordinary workshop!
Funding for these three Saturdays of day long workshops was provided through a collaboration of the Fusion Foundation and For The Children Foundation. http://www.forthechildrenfoundation.org
We received very positive comments from numerous members of the community -
The transparent public space provided a wonderful opportunity for public observation while maintaining a "safe place" for the participants. The documentation by Judy, Melanie and Stephen is valuable for demonstrating the "success" of convening - the diverse engagement with youth, community elders, leaders and officials and parents.
If you were directly or indirectly involved please forward your comments to me at firstname.lastname@example.org as I am interested in hearing your input.
Conversation continued about how Guadalupe is considering the purchase of green products from companies that will be introduced to the community through the center. This introductory conversation is a match for the art making activity with the youth that followed later in the day.
Gino Turrubiartes, Community Development Director, Town of Guadalupe.
Guadalupe is a Native American and Hispanic community of about 5,500 residents between Phoenix and Tempe at the base of South Mountain.
The Town proudly maintains a strong cultural and ethnic identity. It is named after the Virgin of Guadalupe, the patron saint of Mexico.
Guadalupe was founded by Yaqui Indians around the turn of the century. The Town of Guadalupe was incorporated in 1975 and is approximately one square mile in area. Guadalupe is sandwiched between Interstate 10 and Phoenix on the West; Baseline Road and Tempe on the North, and by the Salt River Project's Highline Canal on the East.
Subject of Vision Mapping exercise: How do I examine and explore my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community.
1. What tools are needed for me to determine new information about exploring my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community?
2. What is my role in promoting this exploration of my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community?
3. What changes do I see in myself, my family and my community through this revealing long term process?
Be respectful of self. Plan for the future. Be in charge of your destiny.
Seek higher education. Define your vision. Make better choices.
Show up. Get involved. Take part in community discussions. Solve problems.
What is justice? Seek it!
Celebrate in public arenas. Create murals. Make a green community.
Celebrate the past. Think positively. Be a change maker! Define a sense of free spirit – never hide! Honor self.
Find different solutions to conflict and tension.
It was also discussed that the butterfly cocoons worn around the dancer’s ankles are symbolic of the metamorphism of the spirit of the deer. The deer hooves worn on a waist belt are an honoring of the deer and the acknowledgment of the interdependence of all life for a sustainable existence. Around the neck of the dancer were worn seeds and an abalone shell. These too have symbolic meaning back to the Yaqui creation stories and the cycles of life.
wraps a stick that is representational of her ancestor. Frances has created a face at one end that depicts her loved one.
This metaphoric activity is inspired by the Huichol of the Sierra Madres Mountains of Mexico. They are a Pre-Columbian people who still live in harmony and balance with their land as they have for hundreds of years. They create prayer arrows as a means to give thanks to their gods/goddesses for all they have and to seek assistance for their community. http://www.ArtsCARE.org/huichol1.htm
Two additional workshops will follow for more youth to participate over the next 2 Saturdays at Guadalupe City Hall.
These workshops are facilitated through a process developed by participants of the Cultural Arts Coalition http://www.ArtsCARE.org/cac.intro.shtml co-founded and co-directed by judy butzine and Melanie Ohm.
The Goals of the Cultural Arts Coalition are to:
These nine principles of practice are the guidelines for all the programming that is designed and implemented through the work of the CAC.
Cultural Arts Coalition Nine Guiding Practices for Community Arts
When using these guiding practices for building and evaluating programming, it is important to understand that many, but not all of these practices, will be present in a single project. Over the course of a longer program or initiative, all of these practices may be evident in different aspects of the work. Please note that this is also a work in progress and is expected to transform through our dialogs about community arts practice. The Nine Guiding Practices are the result of a public participation process involving artists, educators, and community activists during 2005-2006 in Arizona.
Practice One: Participant Centered and Inclusive of All Ages and People. Programming is responsive to, even directed or initiated by, the participant community.
Practice Two: Issue or Theme Driven. Programming deals with themes that have a universal focus and promote dialogue and/or creating a rich, interdisciplinary learning experience in safe community settings.
Practice Three: Experiential and Expressive. The environmental setting, the sense of place, engages children and/or adults in active learning and participation, drawing on a full range of communicative media: storytelling, writing, literature, dance or movement, theatre, music and visual arts.
Practice Four: Holistic and Authentic. Participants encounter ideas, events and materials in meaningful contexts with complex, life lessons at the heart of the learning process.
Practice Five: Reflective and Evaluative. Arts programming provides opportunities and vehicles for participants to reflect on feelings, thoughts and new information, as well as a means for community organizers and participants to evaluate themselves, others and the effectiveness of the process.
Practice Six: Social, Collaborative and Democratic. Programming encourages learning in a social-cultural context, preferring cooperative over competitive approaches to achieving goals and creating a shared space for meaningful work with a collective purpose. It is about understanding self in relation to others and community.
Practice Seven: Developmentally Appropriate. All programming is age appropriate, following child and adult development guidelines and providing learning environments that enable all participants to create connections between content areas and understand context as well as absorb content. Learning experiences involve investigative processes, self-monitoring and problem-solving skills that engage higher-order thinking.
Practice Eight: Relationship Oriented. Relationship building and processes have priority over projects and products in the development, implementation and evaluation of community arts work.
Practice Nine: Celebrative. Participants are recognized and honored both individually and collectively through community celebrations.
Funding for these three Saturdays of day long workshops was provided through a collaboration of the Fusion Foundation and For The Children Foundation http://www.forthechildrenfoundation.org/.
MISSION: For The Children works to globally transform children’s lives through fostering the individual worth and purpose of every child and by promoting positive messages, productions and programs that inspire, uplift, and nurture the Spirit.
This will be accomplished through the following:
During the second Saturday of workshop activity, August 30th, the same process was followed but with different youth participating and a few youth from the first week's session returning as mentors.
The day’s entertainment was provided by Frances Vacaneri, Director of Folklor y Cultura Mexicana.
Music used with permission from Quetzal Guerrero. Quetzal's musical exploration began in 1986 when, at the age of four, he began studying the classical violin method of Suzuki and in the following year traveled to Matsumoto, Japan to further his studies at the Suzuki International Institute. His meticulous skills lead him to be the featured violinist for the Conservatorio Pernambucano de Musicas annual recital in Recife, Brazil.