BY Alicia Boone, October 26, 2009

World Up played a large part in the 2009 class of the International Rescue Committee’s (IRC) Refugee Summer Academy.  Ebenezer Bond, Executive Director of World Up and Alicia Boone, Class Facilitator, formulated an interactive curriculum based on identity, immigration, and hip-hop.

Throughout the six-week course, the class of nearly 20 refugee youth created powerful pieces that reflected their own personal stories.  A variety of guest teaching artists developed self-revealing work that helped uncover the student’s unique experiences coming to the United States.  In addition to their written work, the students showed a vast improvement in the areas of self-confidence, teamwork, communication, and cultural acceptance.

The students were instantly enthralled by the variety of role models they met, with teaching Artists such as: Blitz the Ambassador (Ghana), La Bruja (Puerto Rico), Spacecraft (NYC), Urban Word Teen poets, Bajah and the Dry Eye Crew (Sierra Leone).  Seeing mature members of their community share experiences helped open the floor to students who at first were too shy or uncomfortable to tell their stories.

At the IRC’s graduation, students from all over the world shared the art they created over the six week course.  World Up EDU’s portion of the graduation consisted of a special presentation from Lobsang Rapten of Tibet, along with a song created collaboratively by the students.  The song combined their many languages, and made use of their new-found language skills and rhyming.

World Up EDU plans to continue working with the International Rescue Committee, but is also developing a full semester curriculum for students in grades nine through 12, and a college-level curriculum.  The future holds a lot of development for this program; the IRC and Brooklyn International High School have invited World Up to develop a curriculum for an afterschool program, which will begin to run from this fall until May of 2010. So please stay involved and support the programs as they grow, and help our children gain a more global perspective.

You can start with a DONATION to the World Up EDU program  HERE.

Please email alicia [@] worldup.org for more information.


Photo Credit: Lily Solmssen Moureaux

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1 Comment »
  1. [...] Bajah from the Dry Eye Crew, whom have done work with World Up’s Education program. [...]

    Pingback by Blitz LIVE! | World Up — December 2, 2009 @ 9:11 am

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