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Center for the Arts Eagle Rock Receives $25,000 S. Mark Taper Foundation Grant for Afterschool Arts Program, Imagine Studio

EAGLE ROCK - The S. Mark Taper Foundation has awarded Center for the Arts Eagle Rock (CFAER) a $25,000 grant in support of its free afterschool arts education program, Imagine Studio, currently in 14 elementary and middle schools throughout Northeast Los Angeles, many of them with Title 1 status.

Through the S. Mark Taper Foundation grant, Imagine Studio will expand to 4 additional schools to provide fully subsidized, VAPA standards based, free arts programming to 2,250 students ages 6-14, per year, from communities where arts education is traditionally unavailable.

"We are so grateful to the S. Mark Taper Foundation for its support," said Melinda Ann Farrell, Executive Director. "Providing innovative arts education is the cornerstone of our mission. This grant gives us the vital resources to help more children grow through their imaginations while learning practical skills."

The S. Mark Taper Foundation grant will also provide partial funding for 8 additional teaching artists to expand from 90 to 100 enrichment based classes, in subjects such as plein air painting, new media, studio art, comic book making and sculpture. Imagine Studio classes spur creative achievement and help children who are at risk stay in school and alleviate pressures on working parents to keep children active and safe after school. 90% of students successfully complete classes with 75% continuing to study in the arts.

According to Education Director, Laura Marchetti, "Through our partnership with local schools, we are able to engage at-risk students with curriculum that ignites a continued pursuit of higher learning. In our program, children become artists, which shifts their entire perspective and attitude. Students learn to collaborate beyond the classroom which can transform their lives."

Since its inception in 1998, Center for the Arts Eagle Rock has provided innovative, multidisciplinary arts programming and education to the diverse communities of Northeast Los Angeles, and beyond. 75% of students participating in CFAER’s art education programs live at or below the poverty line without previous access to arts education.

Principal Gabriel Arreguin says, "CFAER has filled the gap in providing Annandale students with a high quality, enriching education. I have seen firsthand the creativity students are learning in CFAER classes transfer into the classroom. Students are more aware of patterns, critical thinking and making connections. The program receives high praise from our parents, our students and our teachers."

Center for the Arts Eagle Rock is dedicated to improving the quality of life for low-to-moderate income individuals by providing free arts education as well as low-cost skill building workshops, exhibitions, concerts and the Eagle Rock Music Festival. By connecting artists with diverse, underserved audiences, CFAER enhances and strengthens its community by making meaningful arts experiences available to all.

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