Project Create was created in 1994 when Rev. John W. Wimberly, Jr., community activist and pastor of Western Presbyterian Church in Washington, D.C., recognized a need in his community and sought to fill it. Neighborhood children attending historic Thaddeus Stevens Elementary School needed an after-school arts program, and Project Create began providing classes to a deserving population of local children.
Partnering to Provide
In 2002, Project Create began collaborating with So Others Might Eat (SOME) and Community of Hope to provide art classes to children in families experiencing homelessness. These partnerships were so successful that, in 2003, Project Create became an independent nonprofit in order to fulfill our new mission: to enrich and transform the lives of at-risk children in Washington, DC by providing them with accessible, professionally-led arts education. Today, our Community Partnership Programs continue that tradition of serving children, youth and families in underserved East of the River neighborhoods in DC Wards 7 and 8.
Our New Home
In 2015, in response to a growing need for a permanent artistic home for our students, Project Create opened our first art studio in DC’s Ward 8 in Historic Anacostia. There we expanded our unique model of creative youth development to reach old and new students alike. In 2017, we added a fully-equipped digital media art studio. In December 2019, we established a permanent home in Anacostia with the purchase of our 5,200 square foot building at 2208 Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue SE.
The new Project Create Arts Center contains five art studios (music production, photography, visual art, dance and painting), an art gallery, student lounge, offices, kitchen and plenty of room for art supplies. Our new building is now a creative home-away-from-home for local students and their families. Every day, Project Create offers multidisciplinary art classes, workshops and art therapy groups to children and youth from birth to age 24, continuing our 28-year history of providing accessible arts education to promote positive development in the lives of local young people.