freedom, poetry, music, art, beats, diversity, social justice

refuge program posterRefuge was a free, 12 week program which started February 20th, 2016 and culminated in a group performance held on May 21st, 2016. Intended for youth from diverse backgrounds, participants would meet weekly on Saturdays with spoken word artist and educator, Kevin Sutton and guest artists, Mosa McNeilly, Truth IS…, Brent Rowan & Joni Nehrita.

The program aimed to empower youth to reach for the stars and change the world. Refuged sought to do this by exposing youth to the stories of hope and perseverance from freedom-seekers on the Underground Railroad.

The final public performance connected the history of the underground railroad in Guelph to our lives today, and was held at Heritage Hall (83 Essex St., Guelph), on Saturday, May 21st, 2015. The following video was created following the final performance, and documents the project from start to finish:

Refuge was a partnered initiative, organized by the Guelph Black Heritage Society, Immigrant Services – Guelph Wellington and the International Institute for Critical Studies in Improvisation; and generously funded by the Guelph Community Foundation.