AUSTIN-- State Representative Dawnna Dukes (Travis County) is proud to announce the Theatre Action Project received three grants from the Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA).
Theatre Action Project (TAP) is a non-profit organization that uses theatre and the creative arts to promote social change. TAP employs a team of professionally trained artists and educators that work in partnership with schools and communities to lead unique and engaging arts programs on topics such as bullying, dating violence and prejudice.
"Thanks to the Texas Commission on the Arts, Theatre Action Project will be providing theatre for social change programs to thousands of area youth this year." said Karen LaShelle, Executive and Artistic Director of TAP. "It is wonderful that TCA and the Texas Legislature really understand how the arts support positive youth development and bring positive change to our community."
One grant will support a partnership program with Safeplace, "The Changing Lives Youth Theatre Ensemble." This program enables young people to create original theatre productions that raise awareness and educate young audiences about teen dating violence and other relationship issues.
"It is encouraging to see that the grants will support awareness and prevention of teen dating violence," said Rep. Dukes. "With continued awareness, and programs like this, we can ensure that no young Texan has to experience the danger or anguish of abuse from a dating partner."
Rep. Dukes authored House Bill 121 in the 80th Legislative Session, which requires school districts to establish policies to address dating violence, including preventative measures, legal options, and assistance to all victims of teen dating violence.
Additionally, one of the grants supports "New Stages," a program for incarcerated youth at Gardner Betts Juvenile Justice Center.
The Texas Commission on the Arts provides grants to non-profit organizations throughout the state. Commission assistance stimulates arts education and fosters cooperation among arts and cultural organizations and academic institutions.
"TCA is pleased to invest funds in organizations like Theatre Action Project that provide artistic services directly to students who are in need," said Dr. Gary Gibbs, Executive Director of Texas Commission on the Arts. "TAP's work with juvenile offenders and young people who have experienced domestic violence addresses the priorities of State government in creative, innovative, and engaging ways."