This project will create classrooms and studio space for after-school and summer programs by renovating an abandoned row home in East Baltimore. This part of Baltimore is lacking in educational services, and suffers heavy urban blight. Capoeira classes and after-school subject reinforcement will be offered in this space. Capoeira is a martial art that combines music, language, culture, and movement which helps build confidence and engages multiple parts of the brain
There are more than 46,000 abandoned properties in Baltimore. Drugs and violence are rampant as E Baltimore is one of the poorest regions of the city, and there are no after-school programs in the neighborhood of our proposed project. The city needs to improve its infrastructure and students need a place to go before their parents get home from work as well as activities to reinforce their education.
Our program would help the revitalization of a blighted community and offer a missing service. Our classrooms and studio would provide a location for students to get off the streets until parents get off work. After school programs inspire learning, provide safe and supportive environments, and give students the essential supports they need to succeed in school and beyond. Our programs offer kids and teens subject reinforcement and opportunities to learn a new skill and play capoeira.
CSP is now raising funds to convert an abandoned 3 story brick-front row-home with an adjacent lot in one of East Baltimore’s distressed communities into a mixed-use facility complete with training studio and classrooms for after-school subject reinforcement.
An open floor training area would allow for multiple daily capoeira classes as well as provide opportunities for new programs such as yoga, African dance, and samba reggae.
More importantly, the space would afford the luxury of having multiple multimedia classrooms. These classrooms would facilitate after-school and summer subject reinforcement programs. Interactive subject (math, science, language) based lessons would be available, as well as SAT prep and life skills (eg: job interviews, resume building, computer training). Courses in DIY projects (eg: screen printing), gardening, and item-repurposing would also be offered.
The first floor will be used as a studio space where capoeira classes will be taught. The space will require hardwood floors, lighting, and fans. Hardwood floors allow for durability that will withstand shoe wear, acrobatics and falls required for the sport. Two full bathrooms (1 female and 1 male) will allow students an area to change and provide an area for showering after class.
Research has shown that many students in our demographical area lack these facilities in home which often prevents them from participating in educational activities. There will be cabinets for students to store belongs while they participate in trainings.
The 2nd and 3rd floors will be converted into classrooms where tutoring, mentoring, and life skills will be taught. Classes will focus on the primary subjects, ESOL, and life skills. Technology will be integrated into these classrooms per current Maryland educational standards.
Life skills will focus on job skills (interview preparation/execution, resume creating), financial planning, and DIY courses (screen printing, repurposing, urban agriculture). All classes mentioned are offered by volunteers which allows for low overhead and high sustainability.
The adjacent lot will be renovated as a mixed use park. This area will provide a clean outdoor space for capoeira to take place. A concrete pad will be incorporated with a semi-circular short brick wall. Urban agriculture will play a part in the vacant lot as well. Around this pad will be green space to incorporate agricultural. The studio is located in a “food desert.” This urban agricultural space will educate students on how agriculture is cultivated, and provide students an opportunity to eat fresh produce.
We will be able to transform 2 abandoned properties into an indoor/outdoor athletic and educational facility. This facility will be able to provide after-school services for 100 students daily. Their physical and mental aptitudes will increase affording greater options for college or employment. The facility will also offer additional courses for older community members such as life skills, job skills, financial planning, and DIY courses, opening options for additional fields of employment.