We appreciate when the media shines the spotlight on positive voices and youth activities in our city! Special thanks Spectrum News & Katarina for this coverage! Check the story below! #wearetrueskool
MILWAUKEE — A program in Milwaukee is working to help empower and educate youth through the arts and hip-hop culture. TRUE Skool works to help youth create a connection between the programs and how they see themselves and their ability to be successful in life. It gets them immersed in the creative arts while hoping to put an end to issues like poverty and a lack of positive opportunities and jobs for young people.
Shalina Ali is the co-executive director of TRUE Skool. She said this program is helping students in more ways than one. Rodriguez wants to continue pursuing the arts and the music industry. She hopes to take her DJing to more stages in Milwaukee while inspiring other young people along the way. Ali said the most important part of this entire program is to give youth like Rodriguez a voice.
“If we’re talking about having solutions for the generations to come, then we have to include them,” she said. “You give a young person to opportunity to speak and actually feel like someone is listening and what they have to say is valuable, there’s a sense of safety that comes out of that.” She wants young people to develop leadership skills as well as have a seat at the table to discuss their realities. Ali works alongside Co-Director Fidel Verdin. Verdin said programs like these are critical in the City of Milwaukee. “We have so many great brilliant thinkers at TRUE Skool,” he said. “Creative problem solvers from all different sides of the city that really have a fresh perspective on some of the things that we may really be interested in, in terms of the future.” He said creating positive outlets for students to express themselves creates better outcomes for their futures. “We have a lot of youth leaders that just need investment,” said Verdin. “They need development, a chance, and inspiration.” Everyone at TRUE Skool has been gearing up for their Summer Park Jam in August. It will take place at the Marcus Center for Performing Arts. The event will celebrate the 50th year anniversary of hip-hop culture.
BY KATARINA VELAZQUEZ MILWAUKEE - Spectrum News1