The 411 Initiative For Change
The 411 Initiative for Change was a Canadian non profit organization founded by Tamara Dawit, Patrick McCormack and Anita Wong that provided programming to schools and community groups merging contemporary arts, culture, heritage, education and social development to empower and inspire young people. Abandoning traditional infrastructure of educational instruction 411 leverages young people’s interest in contemporary musicians, art and pop culture to engage young people on common global issues. 411 operated programming across Canada from 2004 to 2014.
The 411 Initiative for Change uses arts and culture as tools to raise public awareness and foster social change.
- Gear our work and programs towards young audiences;
- Use contemporary arts as the media to present our program key messages and engage young people;
- Produce arts education and industry programming which provides a platform for young people's expression;
- Produce programming on issues of importance to young people such as health, social, gender, integration and children's rights issues;
- Ensure that all our events and projects include Canadian artistic content;
- Offer arts-based educational programs and workshops to schools, youth-centred organizations, and public open access venues; and,
- Work in partnership with schools, community organizations, media, and governments.
411’s innovative programming captured the attention and hearts of over 500,000 young minds across Canada. Through fusing pop culture with inspired dialogue and life shaping information about peer pressure, discrimination, identity, global citizenship and respect through the context of common social issues impacting young people.
Historically, the arts have proven its power to inspire as well as to educate – reaching large groups of people. The arts are well known for their treatment of strong political and social content. In addition, they invoke universal appeal – crossing barriers of age, gender, race, language, political inclination or religious belief.
Young people drive the economy and shape the future direction of policy and change. Although they are drivers of change, their opinions are often overlooked. 411 recognizes the strength in engaging young people - particularly at their early critical stages of development when they are shaping their socialization skills. Engaging and influencing young people effectively can shift the outcomes of our communities - locally and globally. 411 works with young people to provide them with the motivations, skills and support to become more engaged and active citizens in their communities.