Colorful artwork created by a child of the program

Location: Black Bush, Corentyne, Region 6

Dates: 6/1/2010 – 8/30/2010

Contributed by: Mica Gaard – GUY 21

Counterpart: Kawlie Khemraj, Headmistress

Guyana A.R.T.S. is a youth development program that encourages teens (ages 13 to 16) to Act, Reach, Think, and Shine through the arts.

Children in Black Bush, Yakusari especially, have very limited self-improvement opportunities. Since it is removed from the main road, many teenagers are unable to attend secondary school, primarily due to lack of financial resources. Because it is a farming community, most teens are expected to help on the family farms upon completing grade six. Due to these factors, Yakusari Primary school currently only has 28 grade seven, eight, and nine students enrolled, and approximately only 15 attend on a regular basis.

Guyana A.R.T.S. is a youth development program that encourages teens (ages 13 to 16) to Act, Reach, Think, and Shine through the arts and to give the teens in Black Bush the opportunity to grow in a fun and nurturing environment during the summer holiday. Through visual arts, drama, music, and storytelling, students will learn about the arts, but also learn critical skills for later in life, such as teamwork, creativity, life skills, and leadership.

Guyana A.R.T.S. of Yakusari is the first of two pilot programs for Guyana A.R.T.S. The Yakusari program will consist of daily classes for four weeks, will lead into the second part of the pilot program, a week-long camp held in Bartica (Region 7). The ideas and lesson plans from Guyana A.R.T.S. Yakusari will help create the schedule for the Bartica Camp, which will strive to have nearly 50 students from the surrounding areas in attendance.