The Lincoln Center - Business Incubator

Jul 31, 2023, 16:14 PM
Title : The Lincoln Center - Business Incubator
Video Id : 693148299
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Date published : Mar 30, 2022, 00:00 AM
I told them that we weren't looking for a place to rent. We were looking for a home.
And so I think that Azubuike has found a home.

The reason we chose to call ourselves Azubuike African-American Council for the Arts is the name actually has a meaning.
And the meaning is "the past is our strength."
And so we thought that that was a good name for the type of organization that we were trying to establish here in the Quad Cities.
The goal is to enrich our community and to provide different opportunities, especially for African-American youth that don't get these enrichment opportunities.
And a lot of programing has been kind of cut down in schools because of budgetary demands and just streamlining curriculum and things like that.
So arts and especially information about African-American culture and history doesn't get the highlight in public schools that maybe it should at least what we think it should.
So that is why we started Azubuike. For the art class, the kids come in and we have a different assignment.
It just depends. Sometimes the assignments or the projects that we are working on take more than one session.
And they know that, you know, art is something that that you take your time with.
So anyone that comes to our programing, it is free of charge. And we want to be able to keep it that way and to just be a service and a resource to the community.
Because if you go into a marginalized community, I mean, how do you charge people?
We believe that if you give young people a form of expression in self-expression, and being able to capture their realities, I think that you've given them a voice, you've given them a platform that they can show what they're feeling and thinking and communicate with others.
This is where our film program comes in. The only thing that most of the kids that come through here at first know about filmmaking, the African-American ones, is the acting.
Well, they know the actors. They might know a few of the directors, but they are not looking at the people who write the scripts, the screenplays, and things like that.
They don't look at the technical people and know that there's a whole crew behind them.
So we try to let them know the different types of professions that they can get just from the arts that we expose in here.
And I think that artists have always been at the forefront of social change. So we feel as artists that we have the same responsibility.
Art is not just art for art's sake.
It has to reflect what's going on with our community, what's happening in the world today.
That's how we feel we fit into the overall theme of being a resource in this in the Lincoln Resource Center, and also trying to do as much as we can to uplift our community and to deal with things head on that impact the African-American community more specifically. We see the community is getting whatever skills and expertize that we have to offer and then taking it and then like, let it spread, take it, go teach somebody else,
go help someone else learn this.
So we want it to spread like that. And we'd like for any of the expertize that they learn here that they can take back to their families, their friends, their schools, their churches, and start doing it there.

Love Girls Magazine is a loving network of support for young women in the Quad Cities.
And when they participate in Love Girls Magazine, they have opportunities for leadership and learning and all things related to media.
So that could be podcasting, graphic design, writing, public speaking, so that they actually leave Love Girls magazine with marketable skills and actually having a network of people that they've met that they can access for opportunities.
And that's, that's one of the huge things with the population we work with is access.
And the Lincoln Center provides us access because without the space we wouldn't be able to afford to have an on site location for the magazine.
We looked at it as an educational project, but what we've discovered is that, you know, you're never too young to lead.
We're opening doors for opportunity for young women.
And, you know, we've been around long enough, ten years, that we've been able to see the fruits of our labor.
We have young women who are working for TV stations, for newspapers and are using their leadership skills now that they've graduated from college.
You know, a lot of people say that self-esteem doesn't really matter, but it's not true.
It makes a difference in your leaders for tomorrow.
You know, we are an African-American led organization because my daughter is African-American and I am. And when young women see her in that leadership role, they're like, there's somebody who looks like me.
And so they want to be a part of that.
But we've never said that our doors aren't open to other populations.
And so certainly we serve a large number of African-American girls, of Asian girls, of Hispanic girls and of white girls as well.
But, yes, it's a huge number because representation matters.
You know, you see someone who looks like you, you're like, I can do that, too.
I was just recently talking with one of our podcast hosts, and she said that she was drawn to the magazine.
She came to the media arts camp. She said she'd always been a quiet person, very shy, and she wanted to really come out of her shell.
And she said, you know, "The thing it gave me was purpose."
She said, "I really struggled with knowing that I'm valued, that knowing that I measure up, that I'm good enough or that there's something special about me that's worthwhile." And she said, "That's what the magazine gave me." She said, "It gives me a sense of purpose and it changed my life." And that's really exciting to hear because, you know, that's that wasn't necessarily the vision, but that has now become our mission to give young women a sense of purpose, to give them a voice.
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Lincoln Center - Business Incubator
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