Education, Arts & Culture

“Morning Joe” Broadcasts from Crenshaw High School

How do schools in the Second District help encourage learning, promote excellence, build a strong learning community, and ultimately promote jobs?  Crenshaw High School is undergoing a process of empowerment and transformation at a local community level serving as an example for schools and communities across the nation.

 

The L.A. Urban League’s Blair Taylor discusses the Neighborhoods@Work program, which helps address issues in urban communities as they pertain to Crenshaw High School and the Crenshaw/LAX Line job creation.

 

 

 

Leimert Park Village Book Fair



The Leimert Park Village Book Fair Planning Committee has named world renown artist Charles Bibbs as the official artist for the 2011 Leimert Park Village Book Fair (LPVBF). Bibbs unveiled his work, “The Reader II,” in celebration of the book fair’s fifth anniversary. “The Reader II” will appear on all LPVBF marketing and event materials. “Charles Bibbs is a national treasure and we are thrilled to have an artist of his caliber create our signature artwork,” commented LPVBF Executive Director Cynthia Exum. During African American Heritage Month in February, the Los Angeles City Council formally recognized Bibbs for his contributions to the book fair. The Leimert Park Village Book Fair will take place on Saturday, June 25, from 10:00 am – 6:00 pm in the lot adjacent to the Vision Theatre, 3341 43rd Place in Los Angeles, California 90008 .

The LPVBF 2011 line-up includes over 100 authors, exhibitors and vendors, including many of the top African American authors and celebrity speakers. “Every year we’ve grown bigger and better,” says Exum. “This year, we’re very excited to have many amazing authors and celebrities guests and expect over 5,000 festival attendees. We’ve also organized some very relevant panel discussions that touch on a variety of current issues in our community. There’s definitely going to be something for everyone at this year’s book fair.” Applications for the author’s tent and vendors are still available online at www.leimertparkbookfair.com or by calling (323) 730-0628.

Bibbs’ works displays a unique, strong and stylized quality done in a combination of abstract and realistic interpretations of a contemporary subject. Using his ethnic heritage as inspiration, along with a mixture of realism and fantasy, he has developed a distinctive style. A native of Southern

California, Bibbs’ exposure to African and Native American art, which both have a distinct spiritual motivation, is strongly reflected in his works. “My most important goal is to make profound aesthetic statements that are ethnically rooted, and at the same time, arouse spiritual emotions within us,” says Bibbs.

Mr. Bibbs is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the Entrepreneur of the Year Award, presented by the African American Chamber of Commerce; a Community Recognition Award from the National Council of Negro Women; a NAACP Freedom Community Award; an Appreciation Service Award by the California State Assembly. His work has been exhibited at museums around the country and overseas. A partial list of Bibb’s art collectors are Frankie Beverly, Najee, Steve Harvey, Dr. Bernard and Mrs. Shirley Kinsey, Marc Brown, Earl Graves, Queen Latifah, Drs. Frank and Marsha Glover, Dr. And Mrs. Charles Mitchell, the University of Arizona and Fox Searchlight Pictures. Charles Bibbs will also be on hand at the Book Fair to meet and greet festival attendees. For more information on the event, visit www.leimertparkbookfair.com or call (323) 730-0628.

About Leimert Park Village Book Fair:
Produced by Exum and Associates in partnership with L.A. City 8th District Councilmember Bernard C. Parks, the LPVBF also is supported by public partners Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, 2nd District; the City of Los Angeles; the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs; Community Build; and the Leimert Park Village Merchant’s Association. Sponsors include Nestle U.S.A., Inc.; The Gas Company; SEIU–ULTCW; Pepperdine University Graziadio School of Business and Management; The Walt Disney Company; Baldwin Hills Crenshaw Plaza; and Capri Capital Partners. The mission of LPVBF is to promote, encourage and advocate literacy, education and the love of reading throughout the Greater Los Angeles areas. LPVBF is a non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization dedicated to producing year-round educational programming, as well as to the presentation of events in collaboration with our partners, in addition to the annual summer fair for which the organization is named.

WVTC and Watts/Century Latino Organization Present MEET ME @METRO II, 7/2-10

Building upon the success of last year’s Metro Me @Metro, Watts Village Theater Company (WVTC) in association with Watts/Century Latino Organization presents Meet Me @Metro II, a theatrical journey on Los Angeles’ Metro Rail featuring daring, site-specific performances curated by WVTC Artistic Director Guillermo Avilés-Rodríguez and Associate Curator Rita Cofield from Obie Award winner Rick Burkhardt, eight innovative Long Beach and Los Angeles-based theater companies and a myriad of solo performers. Meet Me @Metro II will take place July 2-10, 2011 with performances on Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00am beginning and ending at the Watts Towers Arts Center.
Originally inspired by interactions with the youth of Watts who had never traveled outside a 10 mile radius of their community, the inaugural Meet Me @Metro attracted over 5,000 ticketed and incidental audience members and employed over 100 local artists and staff. Now, with the continued support of Los Angeles County’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority and endorsements from Mayor Villaraigosa and the Honorable Mark Ridley-Thomas, Second District Supervisor, Meet Me @Metro II has expanded its route, performance schedule and artistic vision.

With a “Traveling Circus” theme, Meet Me @Metro II features performances from eight cutting-edge, professional Long Beach and Los Angeles-based theater companies as well as a dazzling array of solo performers who will join the sideshow caravan. The theatrical journey begins at the Watts Towers Arts Center and runs along the Blue Line, south to Long Beach and back. With colorful and inspiring performances happening all along the way, audiences will be immersed in theater, dance, puppetry, music and spectacle-all highlighting the historical, cultural and artistic significance of South Los Angeles and Long Beach.

“Meet Me @Metro II represents a synergy between art and transit, art and sustainability,” remarks Guillermo Avilés-Rodríguez, Artistic Director of WVTC. “It’s a way to get people both out of their cars and to the theater, or better still, a way to bring the theater to them.”

Check out last year’s Meet Me @Metro on YouTube:

Meet Me @Metro II is made possible by the generous support of the James Irvine Foundation, National Endowment for the Arts, Bank of America, United Latino Fund, LA County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, 2nd District, California Community Foundation, Transit TV, Metro Art Docent Council and California Green Press.

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EVENT DETAILS

What: Meet Me @Metro II

Location: The Watts Towers Arts Center
1727 East 107th Street, Los Angeles, CA 90002

When: July 2-10, 2011. Saturdays and Sundays at 11 a.m.

Tickets: $11; Available online at www.wattsvillagetheatercompany.org

Read more: http://losangeles.broadwayworld.com/article/WVTC-and-WattsCentury-Latino-Organization-Present-MEET-ME-METRO-II-72-10-20110606#ixzz1OZTqqpUf

Seventh Annual Junior Blind Olympics

Nearly 1,000 athletes took part in the  Seventh Annual Junior Blind Olympics  hosted by the Junior Blind and the Optimist Blind Youth Association.  This terrific event drew young athletes from California, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah to compete in activities such as archery, rowing  and  rock and wall climbing,

The Junior Blind of America provides visually impaired children and adults with recreational activities and rehabilitation, and teaches skills to promote and enable independence.  The values of the Junior Blind are: students and their families first, dignity through independence, building upon strengths, partnering for success, commitment to excellence, and touching more lives.

Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas joined in the festivities along with other special guests, including State Senator Curren Price, Assembly Member Holly J. Mitchell, former gold medalist Rafer Johnson and world champion power lifter Cody Colchado, Jr.

 

Children & Family Services

The spike in recent months of fatal child abuse and neglect cases shows we must intensify our efforts to save our children.

There is no quick fix to the tremendous societal problems underlying the crisis, which include extreme poverty, multi-generational patterns of abuse and an overburdened child welfare system.

But there are problems within the governmental infrastructure – overseen by the Board of Supervisors — that we can solve.

One of these is the failure to create a strong database that social workers and others could use to better spot dangerous situations. Such a computerized “early warning system” could, for example, give social workers evidence of child abuse gathered by law enforcement officers.

For more than a decade, County officials and the Board have said social workers, law enforcement, mental health and other officials need to be able to share information through a common network.

After years of sluggish progress, the Family and Children’s Index (FCI) began operation in 2005, based on 1990’s technology. The outdated system is severely limited and has not had an impact in preventing fatal abuse in Los Angeles County.

I believe better systems exist. Various objections are cited to implementing such systems in Los Angeles County, from privacy concerns to assertions that state laws do not allow methods used successfully in other parts of the country.

This is not a time for excuses. If our state laws need to be amended they can be. We can balance privacy and safety.

To be sure, technology is not a panacea.

I know that in the long term, children’s health and safety is possible only when society is safe and healthy. Poverty, poor education and lack of health care all combine to put children in danger. Children are at risk when a mentally ill parent is not receiving regular treatment.

When a parent lacks the education to properly nurture a child physically and emotionally, a child may be jeopardized. Danger also lurks where a lack of transportation, a shortage of medical clinics and unsafe streets stand as obstacles to everything from doctor’s appointments to outdoor play.

We in the Second District are attacking this problem on all fronts. We must do so because so many of the children in jeopardy are ours; but we will take on this challenge with both the intensity and thoughtfulness it warrants.

Meanwhile, technology may not be a cure, but it is part of the treatment. We must give the protectors of minors in the County’s custody or care, adequate tools for their mission to safeguard children. We wouldn’t think of sending soldiers to war carrying jammed rifles; we can’t go on asking social workers to use an incomplete children’s data network just because it’s what we now have.

The foster children of Los Angeles County deserve better.