OKO: Old King's Orchard Community Center & KCPA Office of Engagement 2:00-3:20 TR

Contact Information

Alida Graham, Board President, Old King's Orchard Community Center
815 N. Church Street
Decatur, IL 62526

Samuel M. Smith, Engagement Director, Krannert Center for Performing Arts
500 South Goodwin Ave
Urbana Illinois 61801

Organization Mission

The mission of the OKOCC is to provide a safe, healthy environment that offers families opportunities to improve their quality of life. We will do that by communicating effectively, developing partnerships, and providing quality programs and services. We serve families from the inner-city of Decatur who are living at the poverty level.

Krannert Center for the Performing Arts is dedicated to the advancement of education, research, and public engagement through the pursuit of excellence and innovation in the performing arts. The Krannert Center supports artists and organizations that improve the livability of communities and promotes the arts as powerful tool in creative place making activities.

Problems and/or Opportunities

Engaging families:
- building healthy lifestyles
- raising educational expectations for their children
- moving toward home ownership

Improving OKOCC programming:
- providing more opportunities for the arts
- providing community gardening
- providing opportunities for relationship building, crime reduction

Solutions and Projects

Transformation of empty lot space in Decatur through the design, planning, and implementation of a community garden and performance space to engage neighborhood youth in positive activities - With the assistance of past LINC classes, we are hoping to realize the completion of a Peace Park in the empty lots behind the center. This would incorporate outdoor art projects, playground design, planting gardens, and engaging community members.

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