When our founders established Art + Practice in 2014, their intention was to establish a small arts nonprofit in Leimert Park that would serve a diverse array of communities and needs with education at the core of our work. Our founders envisioned A+P as a space that would house museum-quality exhibitions and public programming while supporting the housing, educational, and employment needs of transition-age foster youth living in South Los Angeles. In their plan, A+P’s campus would be a container in which collaborators, such as the California African American Museum and First Place for Youth, could host their programs and initiatives, and A+P would help sustain their programs administratively.
Now as we approach our tenth anniversary, we are expanding our mission in support of education by entering into a two-year collaboration (2022–2024) with nonprofit PILAglobal. Like PILAglobal, we believe that access to a quality education is a human right. PILAglobal’s educational model recognizes that the success of that work begins with teachers.
PILAglobal is a Los Angeles-based nonprofit founded in 2014 by a group of educators with the belief that all children are entitled to a quality education. In its early years, the nonprofit partnered with local teachers, transforming their classrooms and sharing innovative educational practices meant to improve the lives of students with challenging socioeconomic backgrounds.
In 2018, with the intensification of the global refugee crisis, PILAglobal expanded their programs on a global scale. Stationing themselves in Lesvos, Greece, PILAglobal created a “Nest” – a beautiful and engaging early learning environment – where young children fleeing wars in Syria and Afghanistan could have a safe, peaceful space to learn, play, and heal. Four years later, PILAglobal has six Nests spread throughout Mexico, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Zimbabwe, and Greece. These sites are run by a dedicated team of teachers who are trained in healing-centered pedagogies and practices.
From 2022–2024, A+P and PILAglobal will work collaboratively to provide educational support to children and families experiencing global forced migration and poverty worldwide. A+P will fund teachers’ salaries and support PILAglobal’s efforts in outreach, brand awareness, and fundraising. By contributing economic resources toward learning centers that prioritize participation and interactivity, trauma-informed care, art programs, and well-compensated teachers, A+P joins PILAglobal in the nonprofit’s mission to advance equal access to education in Europe, Africa, and the US-Mexico border. This work will prepare displaced children for formal schooling by cultivating soft skills like communication and critical thinking as well as hard skills including reading and early math.
The best way to support PILAglobal’s work is by giving. Individual donations, partnerships, and corporate sponsorships keep PILAglobal’s programs operational and ensure that they can continue to provide education and care for the children and families they serve worldwide.
Join PILAglobal and Art + Practice in our work by:
Yes! PILAglobal is looking for volunteers to work in their Nest locations in Greece and Mexico. As a “Nester,” you’ll join local teachers in working directly with children in the classroom for a shift typically ranging from one week to three months and receive ongoing training and mentorship throughout. Visit PILAglobal’s website to learn more.
Since its inception in 2018, PILAglobal has enrolled 5,000 children and families in school programs, parenting workshops, and parent & me programs. PILAglobal currently operates 17 classrooms in 5 countries, spanning 3 continents and has provided over 100,000 hours of education worldwide.
The UNHCR estimates that there are currently over 3.7 million migrant and refugee children worldwide who do not have access to education. When considering where to focus its efforts, PILAglobal prioritizes areas with a high density of young children who have zero access to education and only work in collaboration with established community organizations who provide a physical space, assist with daily operations, and offer invaluable local knowledge.