annie loyd

Youth Workshop at Guadalupe, August 23 and August 30, 2008  E-mail
 

Review of Youth Workshop at Guadalupe, August 23 and August 30, 2008


The participants convened at City Hall.

Dear Collaborators, Supporters and Facilitators,

Convening community with a focus on empowering our youth to lead is not a new concept - the groundwork - the work behind the scenes, is what provides for the amazing and relevant workshop - Convening is a process!

The conversations, the planning, the asking of questions, the discovery, the identification of materials, the research, the gathering of beads, the collecting and cutting of intention sticks, the holistic preparation - is time consuming, tedious and requires perseverance -

To all of you that made the time and will continue - we humbly say thank you with deep gratitude and appreciation. Thank you for an extraordinary workshop!

Funding for these three Saturdays of day long workshops was provided through a collaboration of the Fusion Foundation and For The Children Foundation. http://www.forthechildrenfoundation.org

Mural on the Mercado Wall across from the Guadalupe City Hall

We received very positive comments from numerous members of the community -

The transparent public space provided a wonderful opportunity for public observation while maintaining a "safe place" for the participants. The documentation by Judy, Melanie and Stephen is valuable for demonstrating the "success" of convening - the diverse engagement with youth, community elders, leaders and officials and parents.

If you were directly or indirectly involved please forward your comments to me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it as I am interested in hearing your input.


Setting the stage for the day’s events


Rosemary Arellano, Town Clerk/Interim Town Manager, introduces herself to Judy Butzine, Cultural Arts Coalition co-director, in the early morning. Judy explains the art making activity to occur later in the day.Rosemary discusses her understanding of the metaphoric use of the saguaro stick to set intentions for these youth to become leaders in the community.


Rosemary introduces both Melanie Ohm, CAC co-director, and Judy to Margarita Garcia, Council- person in Guadalupe. Margarita is working at the senior center on this day and talks about how the concept of the intention sticks’ activity is a means to motivate the seniors to think about "Going Green" projects. We also discussed the use of mesquite beans that will be provided during the days’ activities.

Conversation continued about how Guadalupe is considering the purchase of green products from companies that will be introduced to the community through the center. This introductory conversation is a match for the art making activity with the youth that followed later in the day.


Meanwhile youth begin arriving for the day’s program. Here Annie Loyd, Project Coordinator, introduces Silvia Rodriguez and Francisco Garcia to

Gino Turrubiartes, Community Development Director, Town of Guadalupe.


Annie Loyd, President and Founder of the Fusion Foundation, begins the day with thank you’s for everyone coming and to Rosemary Arellano for making available this facility, "a safe space" to provide a Sense of Place.

Guadalupe is a Native American and Hispanic community of about 5,500 residents between Phoenix and Tempe at the base of South Mountain.

The Town proudly maintains a strong cultural and ethnic identity. It is named after the Virgin of Guadalupe, the patron saint of Mexico.

Guadalupe was founded by Yaqui Indians around the turn of the century. The Town of Guadalupe was incorporated in 1975 and is approximately one square mile in area. Guadalupe is sandwiched between Interstate 10 and Phoenix on the West; Baseline Road and Tempe on the North, and by the Salt River Project's Highline Canal on the East.


Introductions and Welcoming of the youth by Gino Turrubiartes.


Story teller Rafael Aramenta and his wife Cruzita provide a parable on how to be perseverant and successful as young people by following the path of the deer and the story that the deer dancer reveals through traditional Yaqui ceremony. Rafael also gave a Blessing for the day.


Following the introduction of the Vision Mapping Activity the participants intuitively select visual images or write phases to answer 3 predetermined questions…


The "Vision Mapping Activity" quickly jumped forward with Judy Butzine recapping the information revealed from the youths’ perspectives answering the 3 designated questions that had been outlined by the Guadalupe Council Persons, Administration, Mayor, Community members and organizations.

Subject of Vision Mapping exercise: How do I examine and explore my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community.

1. What tools are needed for me to determine new information about exploring my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community?

2. What is my role in promoting this exploration of my culture, my family’s culture and the culture of my community?

3. What changes do I see in myself, my family and my community through this revealing long term process?


Melanie records the participants’ commentary:

Be respectful of self. Plan for the future. Be in charge of your destiny.

Seek higher education. Define your vision. Make better choices.

Show up. Get involved. Take part in community discussions. Solve problems.

What is justice? Seek it!

Celebrate in public arenas. Create murals. Make a green community.

Celebrate the past. Think positively. Be a change maker! Define a sense of free spirit – never hide! Honor self.

Find different solutions to conflict and tension.


Meanwhile Stephen Perry, videographer, documents the first activity of the day’s total process.


Local music is played during the individual activities. Here Quetzal Guerrero’s CDs are enjoyed. http://www.myspace.com/quetzalguerrero


Additional Cultural Enrichment was provided by the Yaqui deer dancer and accompanying musicians. Symbolic explanation of the items from nature worn by the dancer made relevant the concepts of giving honor and respect to all life (interdependence of all life) as a means of sustainable living and empowerment of one through understanding and valuing strong cultural beliefs.


Yaqui Deer Dancer Mural on the Guadalupe Mercado Wall


Traditional instruments played by the Yaqui musicians.


The head dress and the rattles used by the deer dancer during ceremony.

It was also discussed that the butterfly cocoons worn around the dancer’s ankles are symbolic of the metamorphism of the spirit of the deer. The deer hooves worn on a waist belt are an honoring of the deer and the acknowledgment of the interdependence of all life for a sustainable existence. Around the neck of the dancer were worn seeds and an abalone shell. These too have symbolic meaning back to the Yaqui creation stories and the cycles of life.


Time was taken at this point for all to share a meal. Wonderful conversation arose about the happenings of the day up to this moment.


The second part of the day’s workshop involved taking a saguaro rib and through the use of symbolic objects creating an intentions’ stick for acknowledging what the youth will promote in the community to support all they have learned during the morning, interactive public participation dialogue session.


Here material and beads are selected by each youth for their intention stick. These selections have very specific symbolic meaning to each participant.


Frances Vacaneri, Director of Folklor y Cultura Mexicana,

wraps a stick that is representational of her ancestor. Frances has created a face at one end that depicts her loved one.


Silvia explains her choice of red, woven fabric; 7 beads chosen for protection and cultural identity; sage attached as a means to create a ceremonial smoke to carry her intentions to the heavens; as well as feathers representing the bird to act as an emissary to be the spirit guide for one’s desires for the community.

This metaphoric activity is inspired by the Huichol of the Sierra Madres Mountains of Mexico. They are a Pre-Columbian people who still live in harmony and balance with their land as they have for hundreds of years. They create prayer arrows as a means to give thanks to their gods/goddesses for all they have and to seek assistance for their community. http://www.artscare.org/huichol1.htm


Following Silvia’s lead, Annie assisted the remaining youth to convey their reflective and interpretative stories of the symbolism on their "Intention’s Stick".


This is a very thoughtful time and allows for each participant to convey meaningful statements in a room that has developed a sense of trust amongst its members. Here a young girl remembers the death of her baby sister through the use of cloth with stylized skeletal images of fancy depicting characters of the "Dia de los Muertos" ceremony.


Guadalupe Mayor Rebecca Jimenez joined us as well to convey her acknowledgement that this ongoing process put into action by Annie Loyd will be followed up by the townspeople to provide a more conducive space for youth in the community to connect with one another and the older members of this culturally rich society, meeting the continuing needs of these young people.


This 4 foot X 4 foot mixed media artwork, created from the youths’ vision and suggestions for the future, provides a continued expression of their views and voice in the community. This vision is symbolically encompassed by their sticks of intention, reflecting their commitments to be active change makers and leaders in their community. The artwork will hang in a prominent City Hall space as INSPIRATION and REMINDER of this critical inquiry process that developed out of 6 hours of community building toward shared vision and action.

Two additional workshops will follow for more youth to participate over the next 2 Saturdays at Guadalupe City Hall.

These workshops are facilitated through a process developed by participants of the Cultural Arts Coalition http://www.artscare.org/cac.intro.shtml co-founded and co-directed by Judy Butzine and Melanie Ohm.


The Mission of the Cultural Arts Coalition, Arizona: 501 (c) 3
Identifying, supporting, promoting, celebrating, and documenting those community arts practices that stimulate social awareness and honor diverse cultural values, and develop the critical thinking skills necessary to be creative and solve problems. As a networking group, the coalition strives to provide a safe place for persons of all ages and backgrounds to gather and achieve a sense of belonging and respect within a larger community and to explore arts-related skills in a facilitated environment.

The Goals of the Cultural Arts Coalition are to:
  • Provide spaces and opportunities for persons to engage in dialogue, experiences, and research that expand the definition and understanding of the role of the arts in enriching our daily lives in community and academic settings.
  • Examine and explore "guiding arts practices" of programming that meet the needs of an integrated community.
  • Celebrate and feature projects and programs at regular meetings as well as larger, community focused forums. Our intent is to help others, whether children, teens, people of middle age or older adults, to use the arts as a mean by which they can explore "the human condition" (including her or his own condition) in and through time.
  • Document and publish methods and examples of successful cultural arts delivery in academic and community settings.
  • Generate connections across an expanding network of individuals and groups who embrace the mission and goals of the Cultural Arts Coalition.

    "Many community cultural development projects are built around learning experiences. Overall, the aim is to transmit particular arts- related skills while helping to develop critical thinking and establish a clear link between the two capabilities, thought leading to action."
    Creative Community: The Art of Cultural Development. D. Adams & A. Goldbard, p.28.
    The communities the Cultural Arts Coalition honors are sustained by your participation.
    Please contact: Judy Butzine- This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ; or Melanie Ohm- This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it to answer questions or to comment.

    These nine principles of practice are the guidelines for all the programming that is designed and implemented through the work of the CAC.

    Cultural Arts Coalition Nine Guiding Practices for Community Arts

    When using these guiding practices for building and evaluating programming, it is important to understand that many, but not all of these practices, will be present in a single project. Over the course of a longer program or initiative, all of these practices may be evident in different aspects of the work. Please note that this is also a work in progress and is expected to transform through our dialogs about community arts practice. The Nine Guiding Practices are the result of a public participation process involving artists, educators, and community activists during 2005-2006 in Arizona.

    Practice One: Participant Centered and Inclusive of All Ages and People. Programming is responsive to, even directed or initiated by, the participant community.

    Practice Two: Issue or Theme Driven. Programming deals with themes that have a universal focus and promote dialogue and/or creating a rich, interdisciplinary learning experience in safe community settings.

    Practice Three: Experiential and Expressive. The environmental setting, the sense of place, engages children and/or adults in active learning and participation, drawing on a full range of communicative media: storytelling, writing, literature, dance or movement, theatre, music and visual arts.

    Practice Four: Holistic and Authentic. Participants encounter ideas, events and materials in meaningful contexts with complex, life lessons at the heart of the learning process.

    Practice Five: Reflective and Evaluative. Arts programming provides opportunities and vehicles for participants to reflect on feelings, thoughts and new information, as well as a means for community organizers and participants to evaluate themselves, others and the effectiveness of the process.

    Practice Six: Social, Collaborative and Democratic. Programming encourages learning in a social-cultural context, preferring cooperative over competitive approaches to achieving goals and creating a shared space for meaningful work with a collective purpose. It is about understanding self in relation to others and community.

    Practice Seven: Developmentally Appropriate. All programming is age appropriate, following child and adult development guidelines and providing learning environments that enable all participants to create connections between content areas and understand context as well as absorb content. Learning experiences involve investigative processes, self-monitoring and problem-solving skills that engage higher-order thinking.

    Practice Eight: Relationship Oriented. Relationship building and processes have priority over projects and products in the development, implementation and evaluation of community arts work.

    Practice Nine: Celebrative. Participants are recognized and honored both individually and collectively through community celebrations.

    Funding for these three Saturdays of day long workshops was provided through a collaboration of the Fusion Foundation and For The Children Foundation http://www.forthechildrenfoundation.org/.

    MISSION: For The Children works to globally transform children’s lives through fostering the individual worth and purpose of every child and by promoting positive messages, productions and programs that inspire, uplift, and nurture the Spirit.

    This will be accomplished through the following:

    • Create and/or support new programs that provide positive and inspirational messages for children and their parents


    Left side of the 4’ X 4’ Vision Mapping/Intentions Board


    Right side of the 4’ X 4’ Vision Mapping/Intention Sticks Board


    The patio with a plaque of the Virgen de Guadalupe next door.


    The Catholic Church in Guadalupe at Christmas time.

    During the second Saturday of workshop activity, August 30th, the same process was followed but with different youth participating and a few youth from the first week's session returning as mentors.


    The day begins for some by reading the available literature.


    For these returning youth to mentor the new participants there was time to check out the completed artwork from the previous week.


    Melanie facilitated this week’s "Vision Mapping" with Kevin Wright documenting the day’s process.


    Judy recorded the youth’s responses to the images they cut out.


    Silvia Rodriguez along with Francisco Garcia, both college students, took more active roles in assisting the youth to respond and facilitating the day’s events.

    The day’s entertainment was provided by Frances Vacaneri, Director of Folklor y Cultura Mexicana.


    It was spectacular!!!!! Tenemos Que Mantener Viva La Tradicion!! We must Keep the Traditions Alive!!


    Nataly, second from the right was a very important role model during the two days of youth participation. She is Frances’ daughter.


    Movement with grace, precision and beauty!


    Everyone is thankful for Annie Loyd’s Vision and Coordination of this programming for the Guadalupe community.

    Special thank you to Judy Butzine and all of her time consuming work to document this extraordinary community project.

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    To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.
    — Henry David Thoreau

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