Letter In Solidarity

To the ArtsConnection Community:

For 42 years, ArtsConnection has tried to create a safe space for children, young people, teachers and teaching artists to find their common humanity through the arts. We know from decades of work, in thousands of schools, that the arts create a level playing field for communication, community building and personal growth — a place where individual ideas and talents can be expressed and nurtured.

A safe space for children to create, discuss and experience art. A safe space to become effective listeners, collaborators and negotiators as they support one another in reaching common goals and understandings. A safe space to envision safe futures.

That safe space was born out of the trauma of the NYC fiscal crisis of the 1970’s. It survived 9/11 and the Great Recession. But it is challenged by the current chaos of 2020 — the fear of illness, the toll of economic collapse and the blatant inequity in our social structure toward African American citizens. We strongly believe that Black Lives Matter!

How do we survive this as individuals and as an organization? How do we make sense of this to the children and young people we serve? Giving them the gift of expression, the opportunity to find their own voice, has never before been so important.

We will move forward. Digitally for now, but continuing to build on the creativity of our teaching artists and employing every healing element and power of the arts.

Our mission demands it. Our sense of common purpose will make it happen.

Thank you for being part of this journey with us.

Steven Tennen
Executive Director