CCC operates a diverse array of programs for youth and entire families. These programs range from intensive arts and writing classes to academic tutoring to opportunities for facilitated community dialogue. We develop our programs in response to the specific needs of our community which are ever changing.


STEAM Workshops (ages 5-12) this year-round after-school program begins in the fall and runs through the summer and is located at the Riverdale Park District.   This exciting hands-on experience seeks to nurture the young Innovator within.  Students participate in hands-on projects, test out different ideas, and ultimately decide on a solution.    Kids learn how to make connections between the subjects they are studying rather than explore them in isolation.  What makes this program so unique is that we incorporate ALL genres of Art from creative writing, theater, music, and poetry to arts and crafts.  We seek to take all that they learn and show them how everything is connected as a whole.  They learn that science, technology, engineering, and math go hand in hand with educational arts.  Students attend field trips and showcase their work in science, art and talent shows that they themselves create.  This workshop will give your children the power of creative exploration and problem-solving.

Engineering Festival

Natural Nature Kids Club (ages 2-12)  the purpose of our NNKC is to help youth understand that they are one with nature and how they connect.  Students build awareness of their environment while discovering their own identity learning the science behind what it means to have a plant-based diet,  the science of their natural hair, holistic healing and much more.  Youth will create natural products for the hair and the body, learn to cook vegan meals, grow their own fruits and vegetables and keep a journal in order to record their observations and personal thoughts.  They will showcase music, stories, videos, etc. on what they are learning.  In this club, kids develop a love for themselves and nature but most importantly they learn that they are one with their environment and what role they can play in protecting it.


Teens Acting In Community
The TAIC summer program works with youth ages 13-18 to explore history and identity through writing and theatre. Each day, students participate in theatre activities, read the published writing, and write original work. Students learn how to capture and preserve their own history and begin to appreciate how vital it is to know where you came from.   At the end of the program, youth produce a book of original poems, stories, and other writings, and they write, direct, advertise and produce a performance for their community. TAIC youth learn skills as diverse as acting, writing, interviewing, directing, marketing, and how to manage a budget.

Hip-Hop/Poetry Workshop (ages 10-21) this program was created to teach youth the history of hip-hop as well as the difference between commercial hip-hop and using hip-hop as a tool for community change.  Students choose different issues within themselves, the community and the world around them and they learn how to get it on the page as well as record a cd and or video.  an after school or summer community arts Hip-Hop/Spoken Word Production program.

Program Description

TAIC workshops will take place twice a week between the hours of 3-6 p.m. Students will meet to discuss, read, write and perform as part of an ongoing dialogue between the individual and the community.  They will learn the history of Hip-Hop and the difference between commercial vs “real” hip-hop that was once used as a vehicle for community change.

Via utilization of Columbia College’s, Story Workshop Method of Creative Writing/theater, youth will be able to discover and develop their writing voice, learn how to edit their writing for song/poetry.  They will explore teamwork, conflict resolution, and collaborative creativity. They will learn how to create their own presentations; working with voice, delivery and stage presence.

Students will get a basic understanding of music and video equipment while learning how to produce their own beats, how to record their music and vocals as well as how to burn CDs and technical language pertaining to production work of music and video.

Students explore the power of their individual voices, image, and basic business skills utilizing social media and develop an overall understanding of music, movement, and technology–with an emphasis upon increased body and vocal freedom and confidence in presentation skills (articulation, volume, eye contact, gesture, energy, etc.).

This project will include a talent show as well as a finished product; Music CD and/or Video.


The BTC Club (Breaking the Cycle)

The BTC Club creates space for youth ages 5-21 to come together and discuss both the positive and negative aspects of their lives and community, and learn how to create positive change through education and the arts. Discussing everything from poverty to teen pregnancy, youth work with a team of five professional teaching artists who offer dance, visual art, hip-hop, poetry, theater, creative writing and a host of activities. Our goal is to empower low-income youth to “break the cycle,” of negative intergenerational behaviors and to begin to challenge systemic problems facing the community.

Don’t Laugh At Me Workshop (2nd-8th grade) creating a ridicule-free classroom, this workshop is designed to help not only youth but educators, social workers, and other children’s caregivers create a more respectful, safe environment for our children.  This workshop nurtures children’s emotional, social, and ethical development, such as character education, conflict resolution, and teaching tolerance programs.

Youth will share their feelings they experienced when they, or others, were targeted by disrespect.  Then, using the tools and activities in the Don’t Laugh At Me guidebook, and guided by skillful, caring teachers, children become sensitized to the hurtful effects of ridicule, scorn, name-calling, bullying, intolerance, and other forms of disrespect that they encounter in the classroom and their lives beyond.

Together, children will successfully create a “Ridicule-Free Zone.”  Together, children will create a zone where ridicule and other forms of disrespect are, by mutual agreement, not acceptable.  New skills will be learned, such as recognizing one’s own and other children’s feelings, expressing oneself in a non-threatening way, identifying prejudice, and learning to think beyond intolerant messages from one’s past.

Youth will learn how to resolve controversy and disagreements respectfully, creatively, and nonviolently.  As children acquire new, advanced socializing skills, heartfelt pledges to change can begin to become a reality.

In order for the transformation to reach beyond the classroom walls, doctors, lawyers, law enforcement workers, business leaders, psychologists, athletes, governmental officials, artists , and musicians can all be invited to the classroom to see what the class has achieved and discuss ways of extending the Ridicule-Free Zone to the larger community.

Most importantly, parents will be brought into the circle; by teachers, school staff, and advisors, but primarily by the children themselves.  Children’s homes can also become Ridicule-Free Zones as old habits of angry confrontation are replaced by new, more respectful ways of resolving conflict with a compassionate exchange.

Family Round Table

The Family Round Table is an opportunity for youth and adults to engage in dialogue in a safe, open, intergenerational space. Together, participants engage in an artistic practice, share stories, explore family and cultural history, and focus on strengthening the family and the community. CCC believes that it is vital to community health that productive conversations take place across generations.

Academic Support

CCC offers after-school tutoring for all young people involved in the BTC Club and Teens Acting In Community. Local adults help students with homework and test preparation while inspiring young people to persevere and succeed.


2 Comments Add yours

  1. Jacquelyn Spencer says:

    Wow! this is a very powerful introduction and invitation to your programs focusing on our children needs and including our adult needs. If I were a child I would have to enroll in your program(s) after reading this. You have and are giving our children the golden opportunity to be successful.
    We need more programs like this in all our communities across the world. Our children need this. Thank you!

  2. admin says:

    Thank you for your kind words. We need more people that care and support! You are appreciated!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *