Urban PhotoPoets fosters self-expression and promotes social awareness among youth ages 11 – 17 in various communities in Brooklyn, NY. It fuses photography, poetry, and discussion into a learning format that explores interactive artistic mediums as tools for self-empowerment and social change. Participating youth observe the social dynamics that affect their community and record, reflect and present their discoveries with family, school, community members and policy makers to generate dialogue and action about urban issues.
Urban PhotoPoets was started by Regine Romain in 2001 while she was a full-time NYC DOE teacher at the Cypress Hills Community School/ P.S. 89 in East New York. Early on in the development of this innovative project, she asked photographer and poet Osunyoyin Alake to become Co-Director and add her expertise and skills to the experience. Together and individually, they facilitate K-12 classes and adult workshops throughout NYC schools, after-school programs and around the globe.