(Ashley Bradfield is a Program Instructor in the Scholars Program.)
I am eager to deliver some exciting news to the FLOC community. On Feb. 7, Scholars Staff paid a visit to the nearby Sitar Arts Center—a center that provides “youth the opportunity to explore and study the visual and performing arts in an afterschool safe haven” (sitarcenter.org).
The purpose of this visit was to meet with the Director of Students and Families, Rob Smith, to discuss some potential collaborative projects between FLOC and Sitar. However, we were lucky enough to get a full tour of the facilities at Sitar before we got down to business. Rob took us through the art studio, dance studio, digital media room, theatre (backstage and in the sound booth), dark room and music practice rooms—this wasn’t even all of the spaces at Sitar to create art! Perhaps the most moving part of our tour was seeing a student’s visual art show, entitled “Identity and Passion” that was on display in a central public space. When seeing this exhibit, Rob assured us that “anything is possible” at Sitar—a theme that was continued in our meeting. We felt inspired and even more hopeful about collaboration with Sitar.
Plans that are in the making include a performance by our high school theatre group during Sitar’s Performance week in May, as well as a student-run Open Mic Event, also in May. FLOC students are encouraged to get involved in the Open Mic Event, either by preparing performance pieces or helping in organizational duties.
In other news, FLOC will be participating in a Rebuilding Together with Christmas in April service event. Volunteers will help to “rehabilitate homes for low-income homeowners, particularly the elderly and those with disabilities” on April 30 (rebuildingtogether.org). We hope to collaborate again with Sitar on this project to bring together students to give back to their community, but are looking for volunteers to participate along with us. The goal is to have a group of 30 to 35 participants, youth and adults combined. Anybody with skilled-trade experience is especially encouraged to volunteer! We must submit our group information by the end of February, so please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org no later than Monday, Feb. 21 if you would like to sign up or if you have any questions.