My name is Simone Batiste, currently; I am working on a community art project that will be executed in the spring (for it is still going through refurbishments at this time). For starters I will share with you the overview of the project. The community I am choosing to work with is teens in the bay area, expanding to teens around the country.
I chose this community because I see a growing problem amongst teens in the US of A today. We are often portrayed as being physically and verbally abusive to each other which causes major disrupt in our communities.
I am to starting a peace project entitled: “Youth K.N.O.W. Peace” by spreading awareness in small ways like online activities, community meetings, bracelets, etc, all leading up to the big project. Over the span of the project, I will go out into the community and see what peace means to the youth within. In addition to telling me, they will illustrate it. At the end, I will paste all the sheets together on one big board and hang it at the local elementary school to show the kids and anyone else who comes across it that youth know peace.
Teens are very creative and are the innovators and thinkers of today and tomorrow. By coming together and installing peace through art, we are demonstrating to our communities and to the world that youth know peace and that it is achievable. With your assistance I know this can get done.
In an interview with Mr. Rich, a key member and mentor in the Oakland youth community, he expresses the importance and significance a project like this is to this community. He says, ” The Oakland youth are truly remarkable. I get the pleasure of working with them everyday in the Eastmont youth center. Many youth that work with have been in or have seen extremely violent situations where it seems no other option is available. Simone’s program will hopefully change that ideology in teens today and in the future. As time progresses, I will see the youth grow as an individual and a stronger community.”
I would like to also engage your, my community to contribute your input on this. Here are a few prompt about the community and the role you play in it as a community leader. The questions are as follows:
1) How did you become so involved in your community and your work with teens?
2) Why should teens in the community stay active and optimistic and peaceful? What projects are currently in place that implements these skills?
3) Do you believe that this youth project would be beneficial to the teens in your community?
Follow this projects blog @youthknowpeace.wordpress.com !!!