SESLOC Spotlight: Paso Robles Youth Arts Center

June 25, 2021
by Team SESLOC

SESLOC Spotlight highlights local organizations that make the Central Coast the best place to live.

The Paso Robles Youth Arts Center provides a unique creative outlet in our community, offering free hands-on afterschool classes on topics ranging from dance to STEAM. Emily Jagger, Development Director & Interim Executive Director, explains how the Center fosters creative expression for more than 700 SLO County students each year:

Paso Robles Youth Arts Center

Industry: Nonprofit

Serving the Central Coast since: 1998

How many employees? 14

How many volunteers? 50

What’s your mission? To enrich the lives of area youth by offering free, afterschool visual and performing arts classes in a safe, nurturing environment.

What’s unique about the Paso Robles Youth Arts Center? The Paso Robles Youth Arts Center was founded by Artist and Philanthropist, Donna Berg. Her vision was to provide all children in Paso Robles and surrounding areas a safe place to learn about and participate in the arts, regardless of their economic status.

By encouraging the arts and creativity, the Center is a venue where children can remain children. The arts provide a creative outlet and a positive means of dealing with the pressures of the world. In this way, it has helped over 15,000 students express themselves, strive for higher education, avoid gangs and stay out of trouble.

Programs are open to all students who wish to enroll. Classes include art, voice, musical theater, drama, guitar, piano, drums, band, theater tech, ballet, hip-hop, break, tap, jazz dance, culinary arts, STEAM and much more. The organization offers 50 classes per week and fills approximately 3000 student seats each year. The Youth Arts Center relies entirely on donations, private and public funding, grants, scholarships, supplies, and equipment.

What do you attribute to your success? The generosity of our wonderful community! The Paso Robles Youth Arts Center is a true community hub — a home for the arts and for students of all backgrounds and economic levels.

What advice would you give someone interested in supporting your mission? Supporting the Paso Robles Youth Arts Center is a meaningful way to help local youth discover and unlock their inner creative expression at no cost to their families. Please consider giving the gift of the arts to over 700 students each year, from across San Luis Obispo County. For more information, visit our website or call (805) 238-5825.

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