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Reading skills - THE SANTA FE TEEN PROJECT


Klausimas #1


THE SANTA FE TEEN PROJECT     

     Brett O'Neill talked to some young people who are making the kind of decisions that adults normally make for them.

     Teenagers in Santa Fe wanted to read a newspaper that dealt with the issues that were important to them, topics that are never touched. So they started one of their own. They called it Free food, so everyone would pick it up.
They wanted a radio show that played music outside the top 40 and MTV's narrow playlist. So they set one up and called it Ground zero. They are the DJs,* the producers, the interviewers, the newsreaders. The show goes out across the city twice a month.
 
     They wanted a space that was theirs. A company gave them a warehouse* at the rent of $ 1 per year. They called it The wherehouse, and feel free to use it whatever way suits them. Paintbrushes and spray cans come out to redecorate the place when they want a fresh theme. Every Friday night it's home to a few of the local bands. To reach kids who haven't made it to the center, bands tour shool playgrounds for • lunchtime gigs.*
 
     Search through the USA and you have to come south to this capital of New Mexiso to find a youth center with so many ongoing programs. It's sponsored by the CCA, Santa Fe's Center for Contemporary Arts. In a typical year there were 322 free workshops* and 156 special events. If a dancer, musician, writer, artist, anyone with creative energy to share comes to town, they are asked to give a workshop. Bare walls around town are transformed by wall paintings.
 
     A police youth forum helps kids who are getting harassed* by the police force, and groups of teenagers give a youth point of view to the city council. For 'high-risk youth 'there's the Rainbow Project, where kids work at preventing dangerous gangs from forming and breaking up those that have formed.

     Funding's the one problem. There's small wage for many who get involved in regular workshops, and the open-door policy means most things are free. Some feel they can't be as free with their language as they'd like for fear of offending the funders, but there's no holding back in other areas. In one year the project manages something like 11,000 direct encounters with teenagers. It's a teenage project, and it injects a dose of teenage energy right through the city.

DJs - disc jockeys (who play the music); warehouse - storehouse; a large building for keeping goods and materials; gigs - concerts; workshop - a period of discussion or practical work on a particular subject; harass - trouble, cause problems

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