DAREarts Foundation Inc. for Children

DAREarts Foundation Inc. for Children

March 23, 2011 10:41 ET

DAREarts Inc. 'Empowering At-Risk Children': We Believed. They Can. They Have

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 23, 2011) - DAREarts embraced the whole community of Ogoki Post First Nations, a remote Aboriginal fly-in community located on the Albany River in northern Ontario, with its return visit last week. The welcome, not only from the children but from the entire community, was overwhelming. The DAREarts teaching team of artists was back after four months for their second opportunity to empower the same grade 5 to 8 children of the Henry Coaster Memorial School with another full week of artistic learning and creativity through the power of the arts. 

The main focus of the week's activities was building respect and other values using film making. Each day was filled a variety of activities, such as: finding the theme of the film, writing the script, taking still photos, special effects, filming, writing, painting for banner backdrops, recording a song, rehearsals and then unveiling the final production and presentation to the community on Saturday evening followed by a celebratory feast.

Many changes were seen in the children from the last visit. One of the changes seen in the children on this visit was the improved self-confidence and inner growth. When asked to be a part of recording, the children readily to stepped up to the microphones. Their enthusiasm is very evident in their song "Swimming in the Fast Current". The children were so comfortable with this recording that you can hear laughs of enjoyment.

"This was our second visit in four months with the students and community of Marten Falls First Nation (Ogoki Post). This is a beautiful community which now has a fully equipped arena is a gathering place for the kids and their parents. The students are slowly getting to know us a little more, and we are getting to know the community members. There's a sense of pride building in Ogoki Post. It was so nice to meet Chief Moonias on the ice. He was skating for the first time in more than a decade. The eleven minute movie and song that the students wrote and filmed with us centres around water, ice on the rink and the fast water in the Albany River. What a delightful time we had!" reflected by Cathy Elliott, DAREarts Artist as Teacher in the Aboriginal 'First Roots" program.

The end result of this week is a short film called "Girl and the Raven" and the song called "Swimming in the Fast Current". They can be seen and heard on www.youtube.com/darearts. While watching and listening, you will see that the new arena,,is the focus of this film. Both the adults' accomplishment in building the arena and the children's accomplishment in creating the song and film are symbolic of the movement of pride happening in this community that will lead to more positive change in the future. 

DAREarts is a fifteen year old Canadian charity that uses the arts to empower children with Discipline, Action, Respect and Excellence. The end result is a group of youths who are passionate about achieving their goals. Moreover, they are poised to become leaders of their peers. Several years ago, DAREarts was handed a challenge by northern aboriginal communities to help re-direct their youth away from the daily negative influences and re-ignite their traditional values. This visit was one of the resulting program partnerships.

This partnership of DAREarts and Ogoki has been made possible by the Ontario Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs.

Please visit DAREarts at www.darearts.com.

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