Donate

Creative Strategies for Change

Mobilizing Arts and Education for Social Justice! Year End Special: Give Before 1/1/2019 & Receive Gifts of Gratitude: *All sustaining donors & donations of $100 or more: original print from artist Moe Gram. *Donations of $250 or more: the original Moe Gram print & limited edition CSC T shirt!

More Information

Fundraising Pages

Want to do more for your favorite charity? We’ve made it easy for you to raise money by creating a personalized fundraising page.

Start a fundraiser Current fundraisers for this charity (0)

Social Imagination

Class

Animal-Related 

Beneficiaries

Description

Social Imagination is an interactive performance and civic dialogue. Diverse local artists, come together through arts and dialogue to devise a dynamic theatrical performance that weaves together personal narratives and social justice concepts related to the intersections of race and gender. The original interactive performance is an exploration of identity, race, gender, oppression, and liberation. Social Imagination engages the audience in civic dialogue, reflection and analysis, deepening understanding across differences, and inspiring informed action.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Please refer to the powerful recap video included in our Colorado Gives media.

CSC Facilitator Workshop

Class

Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy 

Beneficiaries

Description

This workshop is an interactive introduction to the CSC 3 Facilitation Model, integrating social justice frameworks, arts engagement, and restorative practices. This model has relevant applications in any context where people live and work together.

If you are interested in working with CSC, or are considering if CSC's programs and services might be right for your school or organization, this is a great opportunity to dig in and learn more.

Sliding scale, work exchange, scholarships, and group/organization discounts available.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Community Cypher

Class

Civil Rights, Social Action & Advocacy 

Beneficiaries

Adolescents/Youth (13-19 years)

Description

Artists from Creative Strategies for Change (CSC) are working with 10 young people to participate in the Community Cypher Project. The group will tackle issues related to the school to prison pipeline by sharing real stories using applied theater, hip hop, multimedia, and spoken word. The program will include research and development of an interactive performance piece designed to share with the broader community to inspire dialogue, and envision a more just and equitable Denver. The troupe will build creative leadership and facilitation skills. Student and youth leaders will have the opportunity to earn a stipend for their participation in the project.

About the School to Prison Pipeline
A metaphor for the increased interaction students have with law enforcement and the criminal justice system as a result of practices, such as zero tolerance policies and the use of police in schools.

The US has the highest incarceration rates in the world and the majority of people in the prison system are people of color.… "The Prison Industrial Complex" …

In Denver in 2014 students of color were 219% more likely to be suspended, expelled, or referred to law enforcement than their white peers.
DPS Racial Disparities

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

We are working to secure funding to continue to offer this program, which ends June 30. We have begun by engaging one of the participants in a leadership role within the organization. Rosa Torres is 19 years old and is now on our Board of Directors. Rosa's bio follows: Rosa Araceli Torres (prefers they/them/theirs pronouns) is an indigenous rights activist, facilitator, and emerging museum professional. They identify as a transracial adoptee whose indigenous roots lie in Tepexi, Puebla, MX. Rosa is completing their associate's degree in Economics under the CAMP Scholarship through the BUENO Center at the University of Colorado at Boulder. They are currently housed at Aims Community College, but their plan is to transfer to the four year institution to further their education in International Studies and Art History. As a student, Rosa has been fortunate to have had the opportunity to work for various nonprofit cultural institutions, but their heart lives for nonprofit management in museums and in the visual arts field. They are proud to be representing LGBTQ people of color and non-binary youth on the board for CSC. They are grateful to be working with a organization that stands with providing racial equity and mobilizing the arts. They aspire to bring the CSC 3 model to all aspects of their life. They were raised by botanists in the ever moody, but lovely, Colorado and as a result they have plants as pets. They have taken an interest in grant writing, birth help, heritage arts, and various other expanding interests through (un)learning strategies. You can also find them under their visual artist name Araceli Alto.

Community & Youth Programs

Class

Arts, Culture & Humanities 

Beneficiaries

Adolescents/Youth (13-19 years)
At-Risk Populations
Children (4-12 years)
Disabled
Poor, Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent

Description

CSC's community and youth programs support innovation, arts engagement, alliance building across differences, and the development of restorative practices for conflict transformation. Participants build creative leadership skills, historical, social, and cultural knowledge. Outcomes include 21st Century Learning Skills (communication, collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and cross-cultural understanding) self-discipline, health and well-being, social and emotional development, violence prevention, stress reduction, and interdependence.

CSC offers after school youth enrichment programming. Current offerings include:

Applied Theater is a fun way to explore issues that are important to you. What is identity? What is power? Through theater games, improvisation, collaboration, skits, and scenes, you will get a chance to express yourself creatively. Work together with Professional Artists develop your skills, and devise a final presentation!

Digital Storytelling
What kinds of messages and stories come through photos, videos, and digital arts? What do those messages say to us about ourselves? In this class, scholars will explore ideas about identity within American society. Selfies, videograms, snapchat… All ways we express our identity… But… Why? Work together with Professional Digital Media Artists to tell your story!

Djembe Orchestra
The Djembe is a hand drum from West Africa. It is known as the 'Unity Drum' because when it is played people come from far and wide to listen, dance, and rejoice. In this class, each scholar gets the opportunity to be a part of The Djembe Orchestra. Work together with Professional Musicians to learn proper djembe posture and technique, then put it all together in a final presentation!

Film-making
Learn to capture issues that are important to you on camera. What is identity? What is power? Using Applied Theater to express yourself through theater games, improvisation, collaboration, skits, and scenes, you will get a chance to create your own short movies. Work together with Professional Artists to develop your skills and devise a final film!

Hip Hop
Hip-Hop is a cultural movement created in the 1960's in South Bronx, New York. It was created in response to racism, and oppression. As a result, Hip-Hop's purpose became clear; it gave a voice to many people that experienced injustice. Work together with Professional MC's to develop and record your voice!

-Hip-Hop Dance
Learn the art and history of hip-hop dance in a full body immersion. Learn some of the most basic techniques that can be put together in any order to almost any hip-hop beat and make a stunning choreograph dance that anyone can learn and add their own personal flavor. Explore your own sense of style and expression with your classmates, all culminating in a final presentation/performance.

Newscast
What kinds of messages and stories come through the news and media? What do those messages say to us about ourselves? Explore ideas about identity within journalism. Blogging, vlogging, television, & print… All ways we receive the news. Work together with Professional Digital Media Artists to tell your news story!

Tai Chi
Explore the power of martial arts through Tai Chi, a great form of exercise and a way to center the mind and body, improve balance and flexibility, and develop self defense skills. Work together with Professional Practitioners from Apprentice of Peace to create a final presentation!

-Theater of the Oppressed
The founder of Theatre of the Oppressed, Augusto Boal, said, "The theater is language, capable of being utilized by any person." In this course, explore the Theatre of the Oppressed arsenal of games and activities. Build creative skills for healing, dialogue, and social change, that are applicable in any context.

Vocal Music
We all hold tension that causes stress in our bodies. Singing can be a fun and powerful way to move this energy. In this class we will explore how to use our voices to express self and build community. Work together with a Professional Vocalists to learn proper singing and breathing technique, and create a final presentation!

Make music, build your strength, and move your energy in this awesome drum class with a professional musician from Creative Strategies for Change. Experience the power of music from West Africa and use your new skills in a final presentation.

Express yourself, explore ideas and social issues, get hands on experience with hip hop and spoken word, and work together to create a final presentation.

-Hip-Hop Theatre
Much like Applied Theatre with an added Hip-Hop style. Learn about the history and cultural significance of hip-hop in America and it's relation to race and power. Play theater games,improvisation, collaboration, skits, and scenes, you will get a chance to express yourself creatively. Work together to devise a final presentation to show your classmates and school.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

CSC conducts school program observations and offers ongoing training and development for all CSC facilitating artists. Pre and post assessments are completed.

Workshops, Training and Professional Development

Class

Community Development 

Beneficiaries

Adults
Blacks, African Heritage
General population
Lesbians, Gays, Bisexuals, Transgender
Teachers

Description

The CSC format includes a combination of large and small group activities and dialogue. Our approach aligns with nationally recognized, evidence based standards. Participants engage with the arts, collaborative communication, and key terms, concepts, and tools in the specific areas of focus. Workshops and trainings can be designed to meet the specific needs of a community or organization through consultation, collaborative inquiry, assessment, and planning.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

CSC conducts satisfaction surveys. Testimonials:

"Very informative, insightful, and uplifting. Loved the energy and incorporation of the arts. The facilitators did a great job!"

"You facilitated an opportunity for us to engage in deep thought. I liked the pace, materials, activities, content, and applicability."

"I think we had a safe space to have discussions that aren't always easy, and to practice having those conversations so we can have them in other arenas."

Technical Assistance, Assessment, Planning and Coaching

Class

Community Development 

Beneficiaries

Adults
General population
Military
Teachers
Veterans

Description

Lasting change requires long-term strategies. Equity assessments examine institutional power, policies, programs, practices, and budgetary decisions. The goal is to reduce, eliminate, and prevent discrimination and inequity. The assessment assists in identifying: stakeholders, existing inequities, priorities, viable and sustainable strategies for equity and diversity, bench marks, and indicators of success. Planning, technical assistance, and coaching support accountability and sustainability for lasting change. These services can also focus on arts engagement and integration, building restorative systems, or any of CSC's areas of expertise.

Photos

Evidence of Program's Success

Client List:
Adams County Department of Human Services
Caring for Colorado Foundation
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment
Community College of Aurora
Contemporary Learning Academy
Early Milestones Colorado
Greater Baltimore Cultural Arts
Launch Together
Mile High Healthy Relationships Alliance
Project VOYCE
RedLine Denver
Regis High School
Regis University
Stanley British Primary School
The Colorado Trust
The GLBT Community Center of Colorado

Testimonials:
"I loved the interactive activities, the action driven plan, the Four I's of Oppression and Liberation."
"Very well facilitated, provided lots of information. Enjoyed the variety of communication styles used."
"I can't tell you how many times I have referenced this experience… fabulous workshop."

Key aspects of this profile information have been reviewed by Community First Foundation staff. Each organization is exclusively responsible for the content that appears on the profile page. Community First Foundation offers general guidance as to the purpose of each area but does not require or encourage charities to include anything in particular in each section.