Stolen From Africa / Volé D’Afrique began as a t-shirt campaign in 2004. We found that through highlighting social justice issues and stories of oppression on everyday street apparel, we sparked interest, ignited ideas and encouraged dialogue. The increase in gun violence deaths in 2004/5 and the release of the 2006 Student Census by the Toronto District School Board (TDSB) of a 40% drop-out rate among black youth initiated the launch of our mix-tape, “Banning Guns Won’t Stop Gun Violence, Changing Mindsets Will ” Our mix-tape brought together various artists from Toronto’s underserved communities to address collective causes. This project led to a partnership with the TDSB and launched several SFA speaking engagements at high schools and community events. During these outreach sessions we looked not only at the current problem of youth violence and marginalization but the historic circumstances which have allowed this and many other issues to persist.
For the past 13 years, SFA has worked diligently on developing culturally-relevant educational resources and programming for racialized youth and students marginalized from mainstream education. Through project funding from The Laidlaw Foundation, Canadian Heritage, the Toronto and Ontario Arts Councils, ArtReach Toronto and small pockets of TDSB funding, we’ve been able to produce short educational documentaries and provide alternative multi-media arts education programming and curricula for marginalized students and youth across the Toronto and in Southern Ontario.
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