Mission: To teach youth to use the power of photography and their own voices to become effective advocates for school reform and social change.
Results: We have worked with over 800 students in five states and Washington, DC. The students and their images have helped partnering organizations and campaigns secure more than $400 million in new funding for underfunded schools and facilities in DC, Maryland, and Pennsylvania.
Target demographics: Low-income middle- and high-school students
Geographic areas served: DC, MD, VA, PA, TX, NM, LA
Programs: Dc school based and afterschool programs: critical exposure teaches students the basics of documentary photography and advocacy. Students are exposed to the work of a range of photographers and learn to "read" images, analyzing them to determine their subject, mood and message. They are also introduced to techniques for taking compelling photographs themselves. Students identify particular issues that impact their lives and document them through photography, writing, and multimedia. They then develop and lead campaigns to convince schools and communities to implement positive solutions to address those issues.
outreach/marketing & communications: critical exposure works with participating students to identify opportunities for their photographs and stories to reach both the community at large and targeted audiences such as public officials, school leaders, and community members. This outreach includes traveling exhibits and online displays of the students work. Exhibits take place at art galleries, conferences, coffee shops, libraries and other public spaces. The exhibits are an opportunity for youth
remote profects/train the trainer model: critical exposure partners with youth serving organizations and campaigns across the country to support their local, state and national efforts to improve public education or address other issues impacting youth.
I simply love the program Critical Exposure offers to our students. It not only encourages them to develop an artists "eye" but also to be aware of the impact photographs can have on the world, with the emphasis on social justice and current issues.
Critical Exposure has made such a great addition to my after school program, the Multi-Ethnic Concerns Club for 9th-12th graders. The topics we cover are at times intense and sensitive, but Lauren and Fatimah are the perfect leaders for the conversations we have, and are never afraid of including important conversations that pop up on their own. They bring in such well thought out lessons and have a great incite into what the teenagers want to learn. I feel so fortunate to have them in my classroom.