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The mission of artsINSIDEOUT is to connect with young people and mothers around the world who have been critically impacted by the AIDS epidemic.
About the program
Serving the youth of Nkosi’s Haven
Located in Johannesburg, Nkosi’s Haven is a home for mothers with HIV/AIDS and their children. It also serves other children living with HIV/AIDS, and those who have been orphaned or abandoned because of the disease. Nkosi’s Haven provides safe housing, nutritious food, and clothing for its residents. It also addresses their health-related needs—physical, emotional, and mental—and the educational needs of their children. One thing was missing: an arts program.
An international team of Arts Ignite Teaching Artists
Co-founded by Dick Scanlan and Evan Todd in 2011, artsINSIDEOUT brings Arts Ignite Teaching Artists from the United States and several countries across southern Africa to Johannesburg, South Africa. There, they connect with young people and mothers at Nkosi’s Haven who have been affected by HIV/AIDS.
A culminating performance for the entire community
Each summer, the residents of Nkosi’s Haven are invited to choose the area of the arts they are most excited about. These options include acting, storytelling, music, dance, visual arts, and stage management. The summer program concludes in a presentation based on a chosen theme that is open to the public, celebrating the work and creativity of the entire community.
Sparking voice and choice through programming
“Letting the Nkosi’s Haven community take ownership of coming up with the theme this year is a slam dunk from which there’s no turning back. Their investment in the process, and the discussions we had about the contenders, was scintillating and inspiring.” – Dick Scanlan, artsINSIDEOUT Founder
Stories that belong center stage
Beginning with theater games, continuing through the conceptual work of building a show, and culminating in the final performance, artsINSIDEOUT takes the women and children of Nkosi’s Haven through a journey that provides a new outlet for telling their stories. As women and people of color in South Africa, participants often experience societal messaging that tells them to be invisible and silent. Through the arts, they are seen and heard.
Elevating community voices
“The commitment to the theme in 2021 was at an all-time high, and that’s a direct result of the community’s feeling that it had a voice in it.” – Dick Scanlan, artsINSIDEOUT Founder
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