On June 26, 2012 the South King Council of Human Services (SKCHS) awarded the Kent Arts Commmission with the Human Services and Equity Award for an Organization.
The Kent Arts Commission was selected for this award because of your work using the arts to promote awareness of food insecurity in Kent. Initiating a video collaboration between the Kent Food Bank, Reel Girls, and local high school students not only spotlights an important human services need in our communities, but it also builds strong ties between youth, the arts, community, and a sense of place. At SKCHS, we support building South King County communities where diverse communities are socially cohesive and equitable with strong resources, and we are delighted to recognizing the Kent Arts Commission for advancing that vision this year. - Nathan Phillips, Director, South King Council of Human Services
The youth ask that donations be made to the Kent Food Bank at www.facebook.com/kentfoodbank
"What is Hunger" was sponsored by the City of Kent Arts Commission and produced by Reel Grrls, an award-winning media and technology program. In early 2012, 8 high school students from Kent-Meridian and Kent Phoenix Academy attended a 3-day course in video production. During the 3-day workshop, Reel Grrls taught this co-ed group how to discuss a challenging topic, try basic stop-motion animation, use professional video production equipment and learn the process of planning and shooting a video. The finished film is being broadcast on publically operated stations such as Kent TV 21 and can also be viewed HERE.
The Kent Arts Commission is proud to provide this opportunity for youth empowerment. The overarching goal of this youth filmmaking project is to increase community awareness about food security issues during these difficult economic times. In October of 2011, new statistics revealed that 1/4 of Kent's population is living in poverty. Yet the Kent Food Bank has lost its federal funding because overall King County is financially healthier than other US counties. This loss has translated to a 1/3 decrease in funding for the Kent Food Bank at a time when 1 in 5 Kent children are experiencing food scarcity.
These social service statistics reveal a reality about place. Place-making is core to public art programs, and contemporary filmmaking provides for a real-time exploration of public policy. Working with youth filmakers allows these issues to be presented within the context of real-life experience. Listening to the youth share their commitment to change during the question and answer session was very inspiring.
The project is a collaboration between the Kent Arts Commission, Reel Grrls and the participating youth, in partnership with the City of Kent Housing & Human Services Division, Communities In Schools of Kent, Kent Phoenix Academy and Kent-Meridian High School.
Arts & Social Change Symposium
On October 12 and 13, the Arts & Social Change Symposium will offers insight in how to engage and work with diverse communities and promote “cultural listening.” This is an opportunity for social justice leaders and community groups to meet with regional arts leaders. The Kent Arts Commission and Reel Grrls will be presenting "Hungry for Change: Youth Films Feed Public Awareness" on Saturday, October 13 at 9:30am at the Seattle Center. Learn more.
Photo Credits: © Mandy Hubbard, Reel Grrls, 2012