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Home > About > News and Events > News > Field News > New Phase for Boston's "Culture for Change" Program

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New Phase for Boston's "Culture for Change" Program

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Jul 10, 2012

The Boston Foundation and the Barr Foundation announced last week that twelve organizations will share $650,000 in grants to begin a new phase of Culture for Change. The program, originally piloted in 2008 by the Barr Foundation, is a unique approach to out-of-school time youth development. Centering on partnerships between professional artists and youth workers, Culture for Change enables youth to build fluency in an art form while both exploring and taking leadership on issues of racial justice that are of importance to them.

Earlier this spring, the Guild's marketing and communications director, Heather Ikemire, participated in the Culture for Change Forum for thought leaders invested in social justice, social change, youth development, culture and community. The convening was designed to help guide the future direction of the initiative. This year, the Barr Foundation partnered with the Boston Foundation to implement the next phase of the program, engaging a broad cross-section of Boston youth ages 15 to 21 who have few opportunities to access culturally rooted artistic programs and are eager to explore issues of racial justice.
“In the nonprofit sector,” says Patricia H. Brandes, executive director of the Barr Foundation, “young people are often referred to as ‘beneficiaries’ of charitable efforts, when in fact they are the change makers, and our best hope for a more vibrant, just, and sustainable world. Culture for Change recognizes this fact and equips youth with one of the most powerful tools for challenging and changing an unjust world – the arts. Barr is thrilled for this new partnership with the Boston Foundation to deepen and expand this work in years to come.”
The twelve recipients of 2012 Culture for Change grants were all recipients of previous Culture for Change grants. They were selected based on their past work with Culture for Change, their organizational learning culture and desire to grow, and with an eye toward building a cohort that was diverse in terms of organizational size, location, and population served. Grantees will be paired with partner organizations for support and feedback.
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