Portsmouth, Virginia (Wavy) – Stories 10 on your side almost every day – about crime, drugs and illegal weapons – are often the ultimate and often tragic by-products of many systems that have failed.
But there is new hope for the next generation, and it begins at the new urban renewal center, located in the first Presbyterian church at 820 Colonial Avenue in Norfolk.
“My heart is grieving for so many children who are suffering,” said URC founder Dr. Antipas Harris.
The theologian, who was a music major, created the Impact ARTS program as a safety net for children who would not otherwise have access to learning the performing arts.
“So what I like is to focus on early development. So one of the things in Urban Renewal Center what we do is we focus on the fourth to seventh grades to focus on getting them to get art from us. Of course, I am a fan of early learning, but as for art, I want it to be from the fourth to the seventh grade and see what we can do in their development, ”he said.
The term is critical. As the pandemic approaches endemic status, Harris directs a safety net for children suffering from depression and young people at risk of success.
“It breaks my heart because when you think about it prison pipeline, As for adolescents who have deviant behavior, the conveyor belt to prison shows that the level of literacy in third grade has already set a course for who will go to jail in the next 30 years. Research shows that art will really help children in their social and emotional development, their behavior and overall performance in school, ”Harris said.
Parents and children can join Harris for the March 8 and 15 Open House to view the free program.
“We have Tiffany Williams who will be teaching acting and theater. So is theater, and acting jazz, and boat building [will be offered] please come, I think the kids will have a great time, ”said Harris, who hopes to expand the program to other local cities in the future.