The Artes de la Rosa Cultural Center for the Arts at the Rose Marine Theater will use a new grant to develop its after-school program, Artes Academy, according to the board of directors President Tanisia Castillo-Queppet.
The $13,000 grant will be used to purchase tools and materials such as a 3-D printer and iPads.
The grant comes from the inaugural Facebook Community Action Grant program, which the company announced shortly after opening its data center in Fort Worth in May. The social network giant awarded grant money to 16 nonprofit organizations in the city.
Artes Academy students are ages 8 to 18. At the academy, they learn skills and pursue their passion for the arts through fine arts projects, dance and theatrical productions.
“We see a lot of kids come in from the third grade and leave when they’ve graduated high school, so helping build confidence is really what Arte does,” Castillo-Queppet said. “They’re not going to go off to become the next Justin Bieber or Selena Gomez, but they do learn valuable life skills and that’s what we try to focus on, education through the arts.”
The grant is intended to strengthen organizations that serve the needs of the community, including science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics (STEAM) programs. Managing Director Avisael Hernandez said he applied for the grant when he realized that the Artes mission fit Facebook’s.
“We’ve been wanting to integrate STEAM into our academy,” he said. “Once I saw what [Facebook] was looking for, I saw that it matched with what we do here and what we want to do next.”
Artes de la Rosa is home to Fort Worth’s only Hispanic theater company, Teatro de la Rosa. Castillo-Queppet said the center focuses specifically on serving the north side.
“I think for any corporation to be successful and to be welcoming, they need to give back to the community that they are in,” Castillo-Queppet said about Facebook. “They employ a lot of the people who live in this very area. So for them to give back to where these people live, where they might go spend their extra time volunteering, it shows their employees that they’re invested in where they live.”