Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2008, $178,870)
Queens Theatre in the Park will implement a new "Theatre from Scratch" initiative, designed to use the arts, specifically theatre and theatre-related activities, to reach youth-at-risk and juvenile offenders. The goals of the project are to prevent incarceration in at-risk-youth, reduce recidivism in juvenile offenders involved with the program and increase the outside community's interaction with program participants through mentoring and peer to peer relationships which will, in turn, improve safety in local communities because program participants make healthy choices. The initiative is designed to provide intensive, committed attention from four theatre professionals, who will serve as mentors, and four peers. The mentors and peers will work with no more than 20 program youth, with as much individualized interaction as possible. The program will include clear tasks that are highly achievable and the program youth will be paid for their time to encourage the students to successfully complete the project.
There will also be two culminating events to provide additional motivation ' a performance at the LaGuardia Performing Arts Center for fellow students and a second performance at Queens Theatre in the Park for families and friends. NCA/NCF