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March 8, 2013

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March 8, 2013

On my spring break, I spent my time on Alternative Sprig Break for Florida Atlantic University volunteering at Art Studio Miami. I enjoyed volunteering for this organization. I learned a lot about myself, leadership, teamwork, communication, and the Art Studio Miami organization. I learned about myself by living in a house with 7 other women and working together with them. I learned about leadership, teamwork and communication in the orientation and workshops held by Art Studio Miami. I also learned about leadership in working with the children in the after-school program. Throughout this whole process, I learned about Art Studio Miami. Art Studio Miami is an organization dedicated to helping at-risk youth obtain self-empowerment skills so that they may change their future and better themselves to release them from the environment they were born in.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Likely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Likely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

March 8, 2013

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March 8, 2013

I volunteered with Art Studio of Miami for a week for my alternative spring break in March 2013. I was very impressed by the program, the people (the staff), and the way they apply their creative holistic approach to empowering young minds and restoring hope in the community. I have lived in south Florida my whole life and never understood the reality of poverty in my own backyard. Little Haiti is a community that is benefiting greatly from the work and presence of this organization. Their use of a creative holistic approach (mind, body, soul) attempts to empower children through more than academic learning or artistic creation. I love this philosophy because I believe kids at risk for the things these kids are at risk for need a safe place to create, express, learn, grow, ask, and build. Art studio of Miami is all of this and more. Not to mention, I could see the positive impact our presence made in the lives of these children after just one week. They are guarded and a bit rough around the edges at first but with a smile and some one on one encouragement, they soften up and are incredibly responsive to our presence. I really believe that having the mentors here helps them to see they can succeed too.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

March 8, 2013

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March 8, 2013

After spending a week with Art Studio Miami, I am amazed at the impact and message of this wonderful organization. What Art Studio Inc is doing is wholesome, holistic and unique, and that is why the impact is so great. The kids who partake in Art Studio are involved and learning with everything they do in the studio. Most of all, the kids come on their own accord, and through this they are exposed to skills that will last them a lifetime. It is so easy to be involved, and every volunteer can bring something to the table.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

A lot

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Quite well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

March 8, 2013

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March 8, 2013

I volunteered at Art Studio Miami as part of my Alternative Spring Break 2013. We spend the week helping to clean out the space and assisting with ASM's after school programs. Our trip was very informative and eye opening. Soralee helped us become aware of ASM's mission through activities that that they would often use with the kids, and there was a lot of useful discussion. Spending the week with them helped me to learn about the underlying issues of childhood poverty and some possible solutions.

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Would you volunteer for this group again?

Likely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Some

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

March 9, 2011

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March 9, 2011

I had come to Miami with a group of students from Rollins College on an Alternative Spring Break trip. Miami would serve as a microcosm in which to study immigration and the human effect of it. During our first two days we were in Homestead learning about the rural migrant community and their lives working in the field. After which we began our service with Art Studio Inc. Located in the heart of Little Haiti, an impoverished community located in Miami, yet rich in culture and tradition, the students that we got to work with had quite a bit to share about their experiences and some of the stories that we heard were heartbreaking, yet they were a testament to their strength. Despite their home situations, the students were eager to participate in the projects arranged by the teachers of Art Studio Inc. and appreciative of the volunteers who had given them the attention that you could see that they had so desperately desired, but which was often not provided to them at home or in school. Whereas some may have viewed these kids as "hopeless," working with them helped me find hope in each and every one of them through their wit and character. This organization, is so necessary; with funding for the arts becoming harder to come acroos in public schools, these children are being deprived of a unique medium through which to explore their ideas. The arts foster creative and critical thinking, expression, as well as breaking through established barriers of class grade, language, and culture. Overall a phenomenal experience, there should be more organizations like this throughout the country!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I'd like to think of my volunteering experience in terms of what did I give, rather than what I got. However, through working with these children I can say that I was inspired in the sense that it reaffirmed my purpose. Most of my college career I have been planning to leave Florida upon graduation; however, this experience has showed me that instead of looking elsewhere for happiness, my community needed me and I am now exactly where I need to be. Through working with the children I felt needed.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

Tell more people about this amazing organization!

March 9, 2011

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March 9, 2011

I am a student a Rollins College in central Florida. I came to Art Studio with 12 other volunteers and I can speak for every single one of us when I say that our experience was eye-opening and inspirational. There are so many different words and emotions that I wish to express to describe this experience but I will only say a few; Our experience was a one-on-one tutoring with the kids who were in the process of executing a play. Within the first 10 minutes, as the children innocently blurted out their home lives, we were able to catch a glimpse of the harsh lives of these kids.
A few of the volunteers admitted they were desperately trying to hold back their tears for these kids but they knew that must to continue to help.
When the day was through and we volunteers had a moment to reflect our experience, this is what we had to say:
we have fear, fear that these kids will go to bed beaten, defeated and with no hope for the future. Afraid that they will give up on themselves because everyone else has and they will not have the opportunity to attend college.
Hope. Hope that with the help of more volunteers and kind souls that these kids will hear about hope and have the courage to follow it.
Respect. Resect for the women who we watched restlessly keep up with these kids and treat them as if they were their own. These women who can do this for hours and days while we the volunteers could barely keep up for an hour.
Purpose. Finding our purpose again as to why we came on this trip and why we have a passion to help these children. These kids opened our eyes and helped us remember why we continue in school, in life, with hope, and with courage to finish school and to come back to help these children.
I will never forget this experience and neither will the rest of the volunteers. Art studio I thank you for your dedication, your committment, and your love and passion for this work. Thank you.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my entire time here.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

bring more volunteers

March 9, 2011

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March 9, 2011

I came to Miami with a group of students from Rollins College to learn more about immigration in the area. We started off in Homestead, working with the farmworkers association. We then came to Miami to work with Art Studio Inc. We've been working one on one with these children and it's been a great opportunity to get to know each and every one of them on an individual level. These children presumably do not get enough attention and at times, do not feel loved. We, as a group, provided those for the Art Studio class. These children need stability in their lives, since they are not getting much elsewhere whether because of family or political or financial reasons. The two days we've been working with the children we were able to provide some love and some stability. I just hope that Art Studio Inc and their cause isn't forgotten, because those children would be given up on as well without anyone to depend on. They need volunteers. They need some sort of stability from a person or mentor they can look up to.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I felt extremely helpful throughout this experience, even though it was for only two days. I have a lot of respect for the volunteers who continue to work with these kids everyday, and can only hope that more people begin to realize that they children need them.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

try to advertise more... I would try to find a bigger and well-known company that would sponsor our advertisement. And I would also try to partner up with a community college or university in order to look for more volunteers.

More feedback...

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Made me appreciate my life for what it is.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

Guilty, upset, loved.... changed my life

January 31, 2011

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January 31, 2011

I came to Art Studio as a volunteer mentor early in the summer of 2009 and immediately felt as if I'd found home. The Art Studio team of artists and volunteers are so passionate about the work they do to inspire, encourage, and empower the youth of Little Haiti through the integration of creative-holistic arts, and the core team is equally dedicated to providing a supportive and welcoming environment for all volunteers and contributors.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

bringing light to the youth of Little Haiti. You can see the change in each student's confidence, self-esteem, and skills by the end of each program. Also in educating others about the plight of youth living in poverty and the Cradle to Prison Pipeline.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

increase capacity by increasing funding. Art Studio is able to do a LOT with the limited resources it currently has (over 700 youth served already!), but would be able to have a much greater impact with consistent, sustainable funding staff and resources/volunteers.

September 28, 2010

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September 28, 2010

I am happy to be a part of the Silent Auction Fund Raising Committee for Art Studio Miami. The silent auction items will help raise funds for artistic programming and self expression for the children and youth of "Little Haiti" in Miami. Art Studio Miami provides an outlet for the youngsters to be creative and imaginative. They eagerly welcome this opportunity since there is no art curriculum in many of their schools. Faced with a limited budget art is typically one of the first subjects to be cut by many schools. This young organization is certainly working wonders for the youth with limited resources. "Hats off" to the management, staff and volunteers who give of their time and energy.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I have the chance to sit-in on an art session with the youth who ranged from age 5 to 13. All of them were engaged in the activity of painting old articles of clothing to make them "hip" and chic. Each youth had different visions of how what to do...

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

September 26, 2010

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September 26, 2010

during this past summer, 2010, I worked as a volunteer summer program coordinator. I gathered teachers and scheduled classes and recruited local and non-local students. Together we created over eight weekly classes that lead to a student art show with the sculptures and paintings and a play that was performed at Fairchild Tropical Garden's annual Mango fest. The students developed relationships for each other and art. I feel the strengths of art studio were Rachael and Soralee who diligently work everyday to try and bring programs into the community. I feel Art Studio's location is vital for being successful this community. The only disappointment is the lack of funding for an organization who is actually serving children on a holistic level balancing art with daily life.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

own career as a theater and film director. i've also grown to be a more patient loving caring teacher.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

get rid all non-organic snacks and introduce fresh fruits and veggies for snacks. i would get rid of the throw away waterbottles and get kanteens for each student. i would also require parents to drop off kids or have to come once a week to be invovled.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

the kids!

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

quailty teachers who strive to change the lives of kids through the arts

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

end systemic poverty!

Ways to make it better...

i had more expierence working with these types of kids.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

lack of funding.

One thing I'd also say is that...

rachael and soralee rock!!!!

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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3 hours of volunteer time for this nonprofit will...

mentor at-risk youth;
assist with an art activity or fundraising event;
prepare snacks/meals;
organize supplies;
edit photos/film;
document a workshops/event (film/photography);
edit marketing materials;
data entry/filing; Volunteer