AURORA, Colo (CBS4) – Downtown Aurora Visual Arts is an after-school arts program for children. They participate in Xcel Energy’s Day of Service to help them get major maintenance projects done at their building.
“A lot of time just having a group of volunteers who say, ‘What do you need that can be accomplished in an hour?’ is a huge help to us. Plus, we like to have people from the community coming in and getting an idea of what we do and seeing our new building. It’s just a win-win all the way around,” said Susan Jenson, executive director of DAVA.
DAVA’s 8300-square-foot building on Florence Street in Downtown Aurora underwent a major reconstruction in 2016. There is now cedar siding on the outside of the building that needs clear coating, and cement floors that need a protective coating. DAVA serves 1,000 children in the building every year, and they want to protect it from wear and tear.
“DAVA is a community-based youth arts organization. And our mission is to strengthen the community through the visual arts, or through the arts in general, with youth as our primary point of engagement,” Jenson explained.
All of the onsite programs are free. DAVA serves pre-school all the way through high school.
“The intention is really to use the arts for different kinds of learning. Kids all learn in different ways, so not just the arts but also social and emotional growth,” Jenson told CBS4. “We’re not portfolio based, so we’re not asking anyone to come with an arts background, or any particular arts background. As a matter of fact, kids will go on to higher education, to community college and college in technology, in business, in teaching.”