The Issue: Empower Urban Teens Through Photography
By teaching photography skills at no charge, Youth in Focus helps teens who face significant barriers to success find opportunities for self-expression and develop social skills, artistic sensibilities, and a sense of self-worth. Eighty percent of the teens the organization works with are from low-income households and face a range of challenges, from discrimination to low academic achievement and family troubles. Most are unable to afford high-quality photography training, especially when, as the Harvard Graduate School of Education points out, "[a]rt budgets in public schools are constantly on the cutting block."
The Campaign: Scholarships for Youth Photography Course
If this Grassroots campaign raises $400, then Youth in Focus can provide two teens facing significant barriers to success with scholarships to a nine-week training course in traditional and digital photography, thanks to matching donations by a group of anonymous Youth in Focus donors. Each additional $200, matched to become $400, will allow Youth in Focus to sponsor another teen in the training course. During the nine weeks, teenage students attend three-hour afterschool classes twice weekly to learn traditional darkroom techniques as well as how to use the latest software to process digital images. A professional teaching artist leads each class, and two or three adult volunteer mentors also work with the teens. At the end of the course, students will present their work at exhibits either at Youth in Focus or local Seattle venues.
All donations will be matched by a group of anonymous Youth in Focus donors. You can follow the progress of this and other Grassroots campaigns at the Groupon Grassroots website.
Youth in Focus
Youth in Focus hosts free afterschool classes for teens facing a range of challenges, such as low income, addiction, and LGBT identity issues, teaching positive social skills and helping students see themselves through photography. In small classes, professional teaching artists and volunteer adult mentors work with students, encouraging and challenging them as they learn technical photography skills, artistic concepts, and how to use the storytelling quality of images to express themselves. Through photography and with a network of caring adults, Youth in Focus helps young people experience success, which can translate to confidence when they face other challenges.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand at the Groupon Grassroots blog.