Pawtucket Family YMCA Will Help Bring Community Stories to the Theater

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (August 14, 2019) — The Pawtucket Family YMCA is joining a collaborative effort being organized by the Trinity Rep and the Business Innovation Factory for an initiative, titled “America Too: It’s Our Health,” which will culminate in a live performance focused on health and wellbeing. On Saturday, Aug. 24, playwright Dominic D’Andrea will lead a workshop at the Y’s 20 Summer Street location in Pawtucket that will help serve as the basis of a play inspired by stories from the community.

“Stories play an important role in promoting healthier habits and making systemic changes, and we are proud to help highlight community members’ stories through this initiative,” said Reginald Jean, Executive Director of the Pawtucket Family YMCA. “Ideally, we’d like to help share stories from the community that can change how we talk about health issues impacting our community.”

D’Andrea, Director of Community Engagement at Queens Theatre in New York City, and the founder of the One Minute Play Festival, is one of four professional storytellers that will lead workshops throughout Rhode Island. D’Andrea’s workshop focuses on cultivating conversations, consensus building, and rapid content creation as it relates to health and wellness. Community members are also encouraged to attend the workshop with an open mind and ready to discuss a range of health-related issues.

Other storytellers include Sokeo Ros, a dancer, performer, and teacher for a Story to Stage Workshop; Meg Sullivan, Artistic Director for the Manton Avenue Project in Olneyville, Providence; and Val Tutson, an award-winning artist who serves as the Creative Director of the Rhode Island Black Storytellers.

“This talented group of artists will be instrumental in highlighting the health challenges our community faces, and how we can work together to remove barriers,” said Charlie Clifford, Chief Executive Officer of the YMCA of Pawtucket. “We are hopeful that members of the community will be able to participate and steer the conversation to health issues that matter to families today.”

The Pawtucket Family YMCA workshop will run from 2 to 6 p.m. in the Y’s Extreme Gym. A full schedule of workshops is available here, and performances will be held between Oct. 21-22 at 7 p.m. at the Trinity Rep.

All events are free and open to the public.

About the YMCA of Pawtucket

The Y is one of the nation’s leading nonprofits strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living and social responsibility. Across the U.S., 2,700 Ys engage 22 million men, women and children – regardless of age, income or background – to nurture the potential of children and teens, improve the nation’s health and well-being, and provide opportunities to give back and support neighbors. Anchored in more than 10,000 communities, the Y has the long-standing relationships and physical presence not just to promise, but to deliver, lasting personal and social change. The YMCA of Pawtucket is comprised of five branches across the state: Pawtucket Family YMCA and Heritage Park YMCA Early Learning Center in Pawtucket, MacColl YMCA in Lincoln, Westwood YMCA in Coventry and Woonsocket YMCA.