What brings third graders, teens, and young adults all together? Hint: It isn't just this video!
From the youngest youth producers in Spark's 21st century program to the most advanced apprentice youth producers in our Forge Production House, our youth producers are always hard at work developing and fine-tuning their skills as they become the media makers of tomorrow. While their work is never finished, Spark has been a resource to them for the last twenty years. And we are committed to supporting them as they grow as producers, entrepreneurs, students, and citizens - so much so that we've had to grow right along with them!
Like our students, Spark is also a work in progress. You may remember when we formed as Children's Media Project in 1994. You may remember when created our summer youth employment program, DROP TV, which has become a year-round program that provides after-school and summer paid work to teens in Poughkeepsie. You may remember when we began offering 21st century programming at five Poughkeepsie schools, introducing our youngest students to film-making and animation while exploring topics in the curriculum through media. And you may remember a video called Poughkeepsie, Connected that students in our brand-new FRAME program created this summer for their first community client, Scenic Hudson.
Like our youth producers, Spark has come a long way in the last 20+ years. We have seen many youth producers go on to work in the field, attend film school, and grow into successful young adults. We now have seven programs that we offer to local youth throughout the year, many of which pay youth to make media. We've begun serving areas outside of Dutchess County through partnerships with area libraries to offer a variety of workshops to their young patrons. We also offer several free events to the community to view the work our youth producers create in their programs. And our Reel Expressions International Youth Film Festival continues to receive high-quality submissions, creating a showcase of films that expose the local community to impactful youth films from around the globe.
Here at Spark Media Project, we're committed to expanding programs, refreshing equipment and technology to keep our workshops relevant, and moving our programs into more areas. But we can't keep growing without your help! Your donations work to ensure that the next generation of media makers in your community have the tools and training they need to keep growing as producers, and that Spark can continue to support the works in progress in your community.