Incarcerated Youth Show Off Their Skills

Dorothy Kirby Center is a probation camp in Commerce with 60 teenagers who are locked up for serious crimes. All of them are dealing with mental health challenges, like depression and anger management.

Create Now brought our board member Mark Schulman (drummer for P!nk and Cher) and Latino Reggae band Pachamama Estela to perform for the youth. Then 12 of the kids got to show off their talents for all of their peers and staff. They displayed amazing skills in song, dance and poetry at our Talent Show.

Probation Supervisor Tommy Baines said, "It's important for these kids to discover their talents and to learn new ways to cope appropriately."

Deputy Probation Officer Janet Ramos remarked, "This program took them away from misbehaving and their triggers. It opened their minds up a lot. Now they want to perform in other places."

Mark Schulman explained, "These kids come from bad circumstances. They're here because they've made mistakes. They have been abused and forgotten. Yet some of these kids were really brilliant. They radiated. This program has now shifted their consciousness."

Participants received books and our unique Certificates of Completion as gifts to remind them of their successes.