Today, I admit, I was nervous doing the entire camp training for 25 artists on my own. But I never really did it on my own at all! When I arrived at 7:30 Rodgers was making copies for our packets of information, Emily was busy making chai for our breakfast, Shem was senting up for filming, Isaac arranged the room to look like a classroom, and worship music was blasting out the windows and doors as we all worked!
When the time came for us to start Shem had talked me through how to handle the camera and lighting that surrounded me and Clive had given me presentation and speech making tips- even making hand motions in the back to tell me to stop leaning against the wall while I spoke. Rodgers had made all the arrangements with the girls in the kitchen. We have become a team; first a group of people just meeting for “art discussions”, then friends, now a unified team with common purpose and dedication.
I stood in front of artists from Goldmines, Art from Below, and the GoDown Art Center and presented them with the concept of the BuildaBridge Classroom, introduced our camp theme of unity, and spoke about how they should go about writing a lesson plan. The artists divided themselves into groups based on the art-form they will be teaching, including: mural painting, contemporary dance, music, bead-work, photography, and fashion. They composed songs based on our theme, even one group did a rap, which will will teach the children this following week! We took chai and shared lunch together, laughed together, and discussed concerns and thoughts about what we are expecting this upcoming art camp to be like. The day was learning and bonding all in one. By the end we were all appreciating each other and speaking in excitement over the upcoming week.
After the training, in the evening my mom, Shem, and I took the bus to town to get yogurt drinks and appreciate ourselves at Uhuru Park. Shem for his filming, mom for teaching my class in Mathare, and me for the artist training.