Saint Louis Story Stitchers Artists Collective: $33,333
Saint Louis Story Stitchers StitchCast Studio project brings together youth, ages 16-24, and professional artists in St. Louis to develop and produce a series of podcast episodes. Youth lead meaningful dialogues that inspire original content in mentor-led workshops based on participants’ lived experiences in economically disadvantaged, high crime areas. Podcasts focus on the streets, gun violence, and finding solutions to issues that are coming at our youth hard. The project goal is to gain greater understanding of the needs and desires of the youth served and to give them an amplified voice to create needed changes in society, to support youth in a successful transition to adulthood, and to reduce youth crime in St. Louis. Youth artists use dialogue, original poetry, and music to highlight their personal experiences with gun violence, life transitions, and mental health, promoting mutual respect for diverse ideas, greater understanding, and a more peaceful society. SOS grant funds will support the StitchCast Studio project second year funding of a three-year grant.