Creative Roots Overview

Creative Roots serves K-12 youth from backgrounds of high risk and low income, through four branches of free, year-round outreach that put them in leadership of their learning and build their relationships across the city:

Workshops at Johnny Tapia Community Center at Wells Park est. 1993

We offer free weekly workshops every Wednesday concurrent to the APS calendar for students in grades K-5. We integrate art practice, creative expression and student leadership with interdisciplinary STEAM learning that incorporates bilingual literacy, project management, engineering and ecology.

Youth Mural Project est. 2013

Students at Garfield and Hayes Middle School design and create public murals for their campuses and for public venues across the city. Students are trained in leadership and team building with a special focus on preparing 8th grade students for high school. Students spend 10 weeks on each mural, meeting twice weekly after school to foster focus, conceptual development, visual communication and teamwork.

Community Art Days

Each year Harwood designs a large-scale community art exhibition to engage participants from all viewpoints, ages, identifiers and experiences across the city. This year, the Collective Memory project studied disappeared native fish from the Rio Grande as a metaphor for transitions, losses and recoveries in our personal lives. Our final installation celebrates our survival through a portrait of our shared community.

Summer Art & Social Justice Apprenticeship

Art & Social Justice Apprenticeship hires teens from local high schools to create public artwork that lights the International District.