Queen Ann Nzinga Center offers program to area youths

The Queen Ann Nzinga Center, Inc., which provides arts enrichment activities for children and teens ages 5 to 17, is accepting new participants.

The Queen Ann Nzinga Center promotes positive youth development among children of all races and abilities throughout Connecticut, but primarily to children in the greater Plainville, Bristol, Southington, and New Britain area. The center offers educational and performance-based programs to children and youth throughout the school year. The programs are designed to build self-esteem, enhance life skills and foster creativity in an environment that celebrates diversity and provides inter-generational mentoring.

An Open House, which will provide children, teens and their parents a chance to learn more about the Center and its programs, will be held Saturday, Sept. 12 from 1 to 4 p.m. at Trinity-on-Main, 19 Chestnut St., New Britain. Children and teens will get a sampling of the kinds of activities they can expect, including snacks, creative arts, games and fun. Parents will attend a question and answer meeting at the same time, to learn about the program, its goals and accomplishments. Everyone will be invited to meet current participants, teachers and mentors.

Tuition is modest and based on a sliding scale. No one is turned away because of inability to pay. Children and teens of all abilities are welcome. Center programs include the Nzinga’s Watoto, PRIDE, and the Male Mentor Program, and participants meet on Saturday afternoons.

Since 1990, the Watoto program has used the arts and an experiential program model based on the seven principles of Kwanzaa to foster a strong self-image in children and youth. Established in 2005, the PRIDE program works with girls and teens. With guidance from successful women mentors, the program encourages positive growth and development through structured arts and humanities activities. The Male Mentor Program is a mirror image of the PRIDE program and is led by male mentors, placing emphasis on male gender-specific issues.

For more information on these programs, see www.QANC.org.

The fall Performing Arts Program runs from Sept. 19 through to Dec. 27. The culmination of the program concludes with the performance of the Kwanzaa Celebration on Dec. 27.