Leadership is developed through new community members being at the table with the public, city officials, having a voice in the strategy of the campaign and outreach in the community. A4A volunteers also regularly engage in multi-media creation(s), graphic design and social marketing and networking, arts expression on the social issues, working with the media, and messaging of the campaign. Social capital is actively being built by youth expanding their peer to peer network(s), engaging other organizations agencies and their membership.
A4A accomplishments to date include:
–Paint not Prison (PNP) mural and community organizing program in 2009, 2010, and 2011. This program has resulted in policy changes that allow for civil and criminal juvenile offenders to participate in community programming that creates art on public spaces. A4A has also abolished policies that were formally putting leans on juvenile’s parents or guardians homes and cars of up to $103,000 in the city of Oxnard. These policy changes have been shown to reduce the criminal activity and citations among the youth, and lessen recidivism of offences among youth. Assessments have found that the youth who graduate the program have higher academic achievement, community leadership skills, as well as experience interpersonal and intrapersonal growth. The program has graduated over 30 participants, has been part of creating over 7 large scale murals including partnerships with the Social Justice Fund, Ventura County Probation, the City of Oxnard Graffiti Abatement Program, the Gull Wings Children Museum, and Cabrillo Economic Development Corporation. The program has received critical acclaim and awards from the State Assembly, Congress, Neighbor works, ArtsLive Ventura County and the Citizens for a Peaceful Resolution.
–The Media Justice Program has been at the forefront of media production, technology, social media, and public relations for Social Justice related programming and campaigns in Ventura County. With over 12,000 website views, 2000 video views, and 20 graduates of the program the consciousness raising and public relations outcomes have included increase visibility for the Abundant Table Farm Project, the Center for Third World Organizing, SEIU’s campaigns (Keep Public Libraries Public, Part-Time City of Oxnard Workers, and Grocery Worker’s Strike) and more. Media Justice documentaries can be seen on YouTube, Facebook, Arts for Action’s webpage, and other partners such as www.privatizationbeast.com.
–A4A has been at the forefront of Youth and Community Organizing for Social, Economic, and Environmental Justice in the county by actively campaigning since 2004. A4A local and national partners and coalitions in community organizing have included the League of Young Voters, Strategic Concepts in Organizing and Policy Education, and the Center for Third World Organizing. Through these collaborations and partnerships A4A has been at the forefront of policy change and community organizing in Ventura County. Arts for Action’s policy victories have included the Living Wage Campaign, Justice for Pictsweet Farmworker’s Campaign, anti-proposition HR4437 Campaign, the opt-out of military recruitment program, the Halico Cleanup campaigns, Immigrant Rights, and the Graffiti Abatement Policy Reform Campaign.