Since the age of 16, I dreamed of opening a center where young people could exercise their voice and create community. In 2013, at the age of 30, I made that dream come true in the form of courageous heARTS (heARTS).
The seeds of my dream were planted when I served on the founding board of a nonprofit start-up in my hometown community and it was fueled by the reality that the experience of the everyday traumas young people face were no different from my own. Through heARTS, I've captured all of the important elements of my journey so that youth have a space where they can transform hurts, grow dreams, and learn to thrive.
I give my time to the organization as the co-chair of the Board of Directors and donate 10% of all speaker fees to the organization's general fund.
The heART Center:
Creating a safe space was central to my vision for courageous heARTS. Having worked in a variety of youth-serving spaces- from schools to residential facilities - I understand the importance of cultivating a heart-centered, youth-driven environment and felt it was imperative to enclose this intentional space with walls. heARTS strives to be a fixture for youth in the community that remains stable even when their lives are in the midst of chaos or uncertainty.
Youth-Centered and Driven:
heARTS' Youth Advisory Board plays a key role in the development and implementation of programs. Beyond this key leadership opportunity, all youth in the community are given voice and choice in how they participate in the opportunities that are offered through shared decision-making practices.
At heARTS, the goal is to nurture each individual's creative spirit, whether they consider themselves an artist or not. By engaging in process-focused facilitation, we strive to empower young people's innate gifts and encourage creative exploration and risk-taking, without concern for the final product.
heARTS' is built on the understanding that each member of our community is unique and valuable. Restorative philosophies and practices support this core belief by creating space for each other's stories and promoting connection and interdependence.
We like to say that we are not exclusive to trauma, but inclusive of the heart aches and breaks that come from living life. As a trauma-informed space, we strive to ensure our community recognizes the pervasiveness of trauma in our everyday lives and understands the impact it has on our individual and collective well-being.
4164 Cedar Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55407