18:51 PM

Helping Teens Find Their Creativity

Well Connected - Fall | Winter 2019

The Crossing Arts Alliance (CAA) in downtown Brainerd is one of the first nonprofit organizations to receive Small Project Partnership funding from Sourcewell.

Thanks, in part, to the $2,500 award, the Crossing recently began offering after-school art programs for teens. A wide range of hands-on studio- and gallery-based experiences are led by area artists. Regular introductions to new techniques in mediums such as painting and drawing, coupled with collaborative installations and experimental works, are designed to challenge and inspire young artists.

“It's our hope that teens will find a safe, welcoming environment with us where they can explore and share their creativity,” said CAA Director Lisa Jordan. “We hope that this regular exposure to different art forms will build the foundation of a lifelong appreciation of art and help kids find their voice, creatively.”

Jordan said she also hopes these teens will feel invested in their community through participation in the classes and feel as though Brainerd has a creative culture that will support their interests.

Small Project Partnership funding has allowed CAA to purchase the necessary supplies and tools, and to bring in area artists to launch the program.

Twice-monthly classes began in September 2019 with hopes the program will continue to grow to a weekly offering.

What is SPP?

Created in 2016, the Small Project Partnership Funding program supports projects initiated by public agencies within Sourcewell's five-county service area. Sourcewell funds up to $2,500 per entity per fiscal year and requires the initiating agency to provide a 50/50 financial match.

To learn more about Small Project Partnerships, visit and search, “funding.”