ARTREACH is an interactive creative arts program developed by Human Trafficking Awareness Partnerships designed to instill a sense of awareness about human trafficking in our community’s boys and girls and to empower them to become peer spokespersons. Since 2009, the program has been held 36 times, using painting, theatre, and photography as mediums to deliver the students' messages about human trafficking. If you are interested in the ARTREACH Curriculum, please click here.
"The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their significance." Will Durant, American philosopher
The ARTREACH program is presented to middle school and high school aged kids in after school programs and summer camps in the Southwest Florida area. The participants learn about modern day slavery, human trafficking, and how art has been used to raise awareness and affect social issues. The students are taught about the risk and vulnerability factors associated with human trafficking. The program works with participants to create art by discussing ideas, putting thoughts on paper, and actually creating and finishing a work of art. It may be in the form of a painting, photography, poetry, or even a dramatic performance. The kids have full artistic freedom to express the knowledge they have acquired about human trafficking and the volunteers and instructors’ role is to provide guidance and help.
We have found that working with youth to create art is an effective way to reach them and to give them a way to express and teach others what they have learned about human trafficking. The program aims to empower kids by building self-esteem and wariness if approached by someone who offers a quick fix to their problems. It also works to prevent trafficking and to educate those who view the art, including the students’ peers.
The program has helped to build awareness of human trafficking to the general population by having the artwork reproduced and displayed in four states at approximately 27 events/galleries, reaching over an estimated 2,000 people. Additionally, HTAP has gone on to conduct Train the Trainer programs across the United States so interested groups can conduct their own ARTREACH programs. For more information, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 239-415-2635.
If you have participated in an ARTREACH program, please join our Facebook group to be updated on how your paintings are still being utilized to create an impact and learn more ways you can get involved!