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Arts & Culture

SAY Sí Says Yes To Taking Its Instruction Virtual

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Say Si
Say Si Zoom style meeting

A local non-profit youth organization is finding its footing in the strange new COVID-19 reality. SAY Sí is a youth arts organization that Communications Director Stephen Guzman says helps young people find their voice through arts.

"We've been around for 26 years. We provide tuition free arts education for middle and high school youth in San Antonio," he said.

After COVID-19 hit, they realized their first priorities to students weren't even artistic in nature.

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"We needed to find resources for them to just be OK to survive, to learn how to adjust to a new world,” he said. “And so for many of them, that meant mental health resources."

Soon their art calling reemerged, but everything had changed. They couldn't even allow students to come to their southtown facility for instruction.

"We were no longer able to sit down with a student and show them, OK. This is how you make that brush stroke,” said Guzman. “But we have a wonderful collection of teaching artists who know how to engage with their young people."

And so they moved it all online. SAY Sí is known for its art shows featuring students' works, but in-person shows were out of the question.

"OK, well, let's move all of the artwork to a virtual platform. And so we were able to do that this July with our senior thesis exhibition," he said.

The exhibitions give students an opportunity to display their efforts, and a taste of what life might be like if they continued with art. This year of course, the exhibiting was virtual.

"We needed to find resources for them to just be OK to survive, to learn how to adjust to a new world,” he said. “And so for many of them, that meant mental health resources."

Soon their art calling reemerged, but everything had changed. They couldn't even allow students to come to their southtown facility for instruction.

"We were no longer able to sit down with a student and show them, OK. This is how you make that brush stroke,” said Guzman. “But we have a wonderful collection of teaching artists who know how to engage with their young people."

And so they moved it all online. SAY Sí is known for its art shows featuring students' works, but in-person shows were out of the question.

"OK, well, let's move all of the artwork to a virtual platform. And so we were able to do that this July with our senior thesis exhibition," he said.

The exhibitions give students an opportunity to display their efforts, and a taste of what life might be like if they continued with art. This year of course, the exhibiting was virtual.