viBe Theater Experience produces original theater and music about real-life issues written and performed by New York City teenage girls.
viBe’s intensive programming is free and engages, inspires, and empowers girls (ages 13-19) to write, create, publish, direct, and perform personal and truthful collaborative theater and music about the real-life issues they face daily. viBe provides a safe, creative space for girls to express their voices, take on challenges and gain the self-confidence necessary to succeed personally, artistically and academically.
Since 2002, more than 60 viBe productions have brought free theater, live musical performances, music videos, and radio plays to thousands of diverse audience members, changing their perceptions about the kind of art that young women can create.
WHY WE DO IT
Studies show that black girls and young women disproportionately experience violence at school, on the job, at home, and in their neighborhoods.
As noted the study, “Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out Overpoliced and Unprotected” and the book "Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools" girls of color face more challenges than others when it comes to the way that they are disciplined, educated, & denied leadership opportunities.
A 2012 NEA study on arts engagement found that more than half the students from low income families with exposure to the arts went on to pursue careers in law, public service and education.
"No Idle Hours: Making After School Time Fun and Productive for Chicago Teenagers" shows that high quality after school programs provide such positive role modes for advantaged youth to excel but most viBeGirls lack the financial resources to afford after school programming; and high quality arts programming is even more limited.
viBe engages over 325 girls & young women (ages 13-24) through 6 free, after school programs, while also reaching over 600 NYC public school students & 2,000 audience members through performances at professional venues.
NYC public schools had a 74.3%% overall graduation rate in 2017, with 70% of black students and 68.3% of Hispanic students having graduated by August 2017, compared with 83.2% of white students.
viBe has always maintained a 100% high school graduation rate from our participants. We help with college readiness, internships, applications, and assist girls with making plans for their lives post high school
Over 90% of viBe girls continue on to enroll in college, attending such universities as: Syracuse, Temple, Hunter, St. John’s, SUNY Purchase, Simmons and more. In the future, we aim to inspire 100% of them to enroll in college through the mentorship we provide them during and after our programs.
Over 50% of our alumnae since 2002 remain in touch with us via email, Facebook and attend viBe performances and fundraisers. They also return to volunteer, intern and lecture for current viBe girls.
90% of viBe participants are girls of color from under-resourced communities with poorly performing public schools.
70% live in households that lack the resources to pay for tutoring and arts programs that can inform their studies and bolster their self-esteem.