This summer ARTogether is launching the Creative Youth Program for high school-aged newcomer Afghan refugee youth who recently arrived in the United States.
The program is absolutely FREE.
Held on Wednesdays and Thursdays, July 5th, 6th, 26th & 27th from 9:30am – 3pm for 2 separate groups of Afghan girls and boys, the program aims to provide a unique opportunity for recently-arrived Afghan youth to gather in a safe space to make art, explore creativity, make friends, process and explore feelings and emotions, and develop new social skills to help navigate their new environment.
Topics of discussion and learning will include: self-care, leadership, empowerment, community and social awareness, self expression through movement and more. In addition, youth participants will learn art workshop facilitation and some will have the opportunity for hands-on practice experience at the Soccer Without Borders Summer Camp.
The workshops will feature art forms such as watercolor, photography, printmaking, sewing and tie-dye, with guest artists drawing on traditions aimed to resonate with and celebrate the culture and traditions of our youth participants.
Each gathering will be co-led by Goli Hashemi, ARTogether’s Community Wellness Program Director and a faculty member at Samuel Merritt University’s (SMU) Occupational Therapy Department. In addition, occupational therapist Jessalyn Gagui will offer support to ensure a wellness-informed environment that encourages expression and creativity.
The goal of the Creative Youth Program is to build a safe environment for Afghan youth participants to freely express themselves, practice art, find connections in their new environment, and start the process of healing from the traumas of migration.