The Downtown LA Youth and Culture Center

Sep 14, 2010 by Lisa Newton

If you’ve been to 132 S. Beaudry Avenue in Downtown Los Angeles recently, then you might probably noticed a special change in the area.

Although, Travelin’ Local featured a mural yesterday, today’s mural is a little different. It represents Downtown’s LA Youth & Culture Center, “a great place for teens where they can learn a lot about art, music, computers etc.”

On their Facebook page, they feature this quote:

Everyone has got to be doing something here in this center. You have to be constantly on the move, even if it’s something small. The only time you don’t do anything is when you’re dead. – Carmelo Alvarez – Director of the Center

Instead of me telling you about the Downtown LA Youth & Culture Center, I’ll let the students speak for themselves:

I grew up in Pico Union, and I am now currently living in Boyle Heights. I enjoy coming to this youth center because I always feel welcomed here, and no one makes like a minority. I’ve had meetings here, art experiences, and I’ve brought friends over to jamm out in the band room. I’ve enjoyed moments of music, gatherings, and friends rapping here. I’ve prepared for a Youth Empowerment Summit here, and our youth group did an awsome job! Some friends and I organized a highschool boycott against the SB 1070 a couple of months ago. I’ve been allowed to utillize this center and I am very thankful! Sinnai Avila age 15 yrs

I had a great expirience here at The Downtown L.A Youth and Culture Center.I say I  had a great expirience here at the the youth center  because I learned how to do monoprints, how to manage money, and how to enlarge a small picture into a big picture. I feel really excited to work at this center because if i hadnt been placed here I think i wouldnt have learned what i learned and wouldnt have the knowledge I have know. Elizabeth Martinez 17 years old

I been working at Downtown LA Youth and Culture Center for about three mouths. Its a very cool place to kick it at because we do a lot of fun stuff. We get to take care of little kids and there so nice. I work in the morning so I dont get to do a lot of the activies that the other youth workers do, but I heard they learn a lot. I heard they play instruments, learn how to make beats, how to do a little bit of lighting, how to make a design on a shirt, how to monoprint, and how to work together. Carmelo, the director is a very nice person who wants to make a change in the community and truely DTLAYCC is a good way to start.I really like it here and Im planning on coming back and help out. My name is Luis Coto and Im 17 years old

My name is Carol Nguyen, 15 years old, and I have spent the majority of my summer at Downtown Youth and Culture Center. In general, I spent most of my time working with the Los Angeles Theater Academy, which collaborates with DYCC. All in all, I had a great time, and I have learned leadership skills, as well as valuable communication skills with children, as well as peers and adults. Working with the kids meant that I had to develop strong communication skills, both in speaking and writing. In addition, working with the children also meant supervising them, as well as look out for their well-being and most importantly, having fun with them. Going out with LATA for the first day, I did not know what to expect. I was nevous and anxious at what my responsibilites and duties were as a summer worker, but I was also secetly excited that I was granted the opportunity to work with such amazing children. As the weeks progressed during summer, I could feel myself gradually growing out of my comfort zone, and moving on to bigger and greater things. I had realized that my people skills and my communication skills had grown by far versus the first day, and I knew that it was at the hand of LATA, as well as DYCC. Working collaboratively with DYCC and LATA has taught me so many life experiences, and prepared me for speaking and communication skills that I thought that I would never possess. I am glad that I was granted the chance to work for DYCC and LATA, and I just wanted to let everyone know that I appreciate this opportunity to work side by side with so many wonderful and amazing people.  Carol Nguyen. Once in a Lifetime.

hello! my name is tai. i love to come to downtown la youth and culture center. Beacuse its so fun, and also learn more skills or experience. Well my experience is learn to dance shuffle and hardstyle , dj, music, art, graffti, and paint on the wall. If you guys want to learn how to shuffle, come to downtown la youth and culture center and i will teach you :) . Thank you all of you guys and comment me. Kha Tai Quoc age 15

Well my experience in Downtown LA Youth And Culture Center was really awesome.This place is a place where they give us a chance to be creative.They showed me how to do alot of new thing like how to DJ and how to manage money. It was also a really good experience because I got to be in a youth video and they showed me how to lip sing.I really liked this place and everything I learned is really going to help me in life. Veronica Castro Age 15

My expirience in this job is coool and I feel good being in this job. I have learnd many thing in DTLA for exmple I learnd how to do a comic book.I also learnd how to draw, and turnd a small picture n to a big picture by drawing it. I also learnd how to play insturment and my favorite insturment was the drums. I learnd how to play the DJ and the new version and how was diffrent back then. JONATHAN TAPIA 14 YEARS OLD

Being part of this program have greatly changed me. I have learned to socialize better with people. Working overtime for dances was the best part for me. I met a lot of great friends and acquired many newfound skills. My experience here have made my summer better than any other summer. I have joined many programs like the environmental thingie and went to astronomy camp. I hope I can come back next time.  Desmond Chu age 15

my name is edward and i am a 16 year old man. My experience at downtown la youth& culture center has been journey and an amazing experience as a musician and a scholar. DTLAYCC has  been a journey because of its involvement with the community and neighborhood  which enables my leadership and social skills to be demonstrated in a day to day basis. My life as a musician was very struggling because of lack of practice space; but DTLAYCC allows access to their excellent music equiptment and performance space. This center has gone above and beyond to create a center for all youth to feel in the comforts of their home and as a refugee for teens who want to excel in their future but certain events stop them.  Edward Salcedo and center

My name is Imani im 15 years old  and i been goin to the downtown la youth & culture center for about like 2 months. And i love it i learn so much about music, art,programs on computers, djing,mono art,and so much more.The one thing i really like about this place is the people that come here. They really great people and the event we have here are good to. I had an event here and it turned out really good i help rasied money for the center by doing this event. So i really think its a great place for everyone.  Imani’s note about the center

Each of these “Notes” can be found on the Downtown LAYCC Facebook page

The Downtown LA Youth and Culture Center sounds like a very special place!

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