Shelter: Community Engagement

The issues brought up and addressed in Shelter are some of the most pressing matters facing communities and the nation (and the world). Because these issues run long and deep for many, CalArts has created various engagement and learning curricula for those directly affected by these issues (i.e. child refugees) as well as the affected communities (i.e. service and legal providers, community-based organizations, etc). This process not only serves the community partners supporting Shelter, it also deepens performer connection and understanding to the topic (performers help lead the workshops and engagement).

Facilitated dialogue, accompanying performances, also increase community engagement. More than an audience talk-back, the dialogue sessions provide space for the audience community to jointly engage around issues of human rights, policy, and politics. In addition to the public dialogue, the facilitation structure includes participation opportunities for local voices and experts.

For more information about how to bring Shelter to your community or organization, please contact us at

Community Partners

Plaza de la Raza

Plaza de la Raza Cultural Center for the Arts & Education is a multidisciplinary community arts venue dedicated to serving the Eastside neighborhoods of Los Angeles. It offers affordable after-school, intergenerational arts education programs to children, teens and adults.

School of History and Dramatic Arts

The School of History and Dramatic Arts (SoHDA) is a Linked Learning community with a college and career preparatory program. Through Marissa’s relationship with the school, Shelter company has been engaging with students at SoHDA since the early development process of Shelter last year. This year Shelter company will continue to deepen our relationship with SoHDA through various workshops and other engagement programs.


CARECEN, the Central American Resource Center, is a non-profit organization that offers low-cost immigration legal services, community education programs, and advocacy and organizing to achieve fair and more inclusive immigration, education and labor laws and policies in Los Angeles and the rest of the nation. Shelter will be performed at CARECEN on March 18, 2016. Along the way, Shelter company will be doing several workshops with CARECEN’s youth and high school students.

Self Help Graphics & Art

Self Help Graphics & Art is the leading non-profit visual arts center serving the predominantly Latino community of Los Angeles. Its mission is to drive the creation of new work by Chicano and Latino artists through fine art printmaking and multiple visual art forms.

Newhall Community Center

The mission of the Newhall Community Center is to enrich the community by connecting with residents and providing quality structured programs and activities. They offer a variety of specialty programs and opportunities including classes and programs for youth, active adults, organized sports, intergenerational programming, and community events.