Given opportunities to develop their creative potentials, youth will live richer, fuller lives and develop the critical learning and life skills they need to become active contributors in their communities. As young people create their own work in the arts, they build the personal, social, and intellectual capacities they need to succeed in school, career and life. – Collective Action for Youth
Creative youth development programming supports a successful transition into adulthood. And it is through Alliance member programming that our youth are learning 21st century skills such as problem solving, taking responsibility for their own actions, learning to be flexible, applying creative skills, critical thinking, engagement in civic issues, and feeling better about their future.
Participants also show an increase in teamwork skills – respect, listening, valuing diverse perspectives, goal setting, and working together. Young people in our programs learn these and other life skills throughout the creative process.
Creative youth development not only promotes excellence in the arts but, equally as important, excellence as individuals. Engaging youth in their own learning helps them cultivate a strong sense of self.
Young people are not necessarily in these programs to become “artists.” They will have the same opportunities to succeed in whatever field they decide. The arts impact every layer of their potential success.
Results of our surveys show a significant increase in their self-confidence. Pride in self-expression and personal identity, including an appreciation for diversity and intercultural understanding/learning, are other program outcomes.
New Ways of Learning
No one student learns in the same way and the arts allow for variety in learning. Youth are more interested in learning when they have multiple ways in which to engage in the process.
In addition, working with our professional artists exposes youth to a variety of genres, which help them to explore new ideas and forms. Our artist instructors also serve as positive role models and mentors.
Our programs give youth a voice in their own life’s path, and the community development in which they live. Feeling safe and supported, coupled with a sense of belonging, friendship, and caring adult staff are also results of program participation.