Detroit (CBS Detroit) – Citywide Poets is InsideOut’s award-winning afterschool program, providing teens with a literary community to collaboratively explore their lives through the written and spoken word.

“We have in-school programming that we’re well known for, but our after-school program is called Citywide Poets,” explains Suma Karaman Rosen, Executive Director of InsideOut Literary Arts. “It’s an award-winning program that really helps young people further their craft and work on not only writing but also on performance.”

By participating in intensive artistic mentorship, publication, and performance opportunities, Citywide Poets cultivates a youth-driven narrative for the future of Detroit, rooted in their creativity and artistry. “The exciting thing about poetry is that it really teaches you to connect with your imagination,” adds Rosen, “and imagination is the key to everything.”

“People often ask why poetry? How important is poetry? I always say that we’re not about creating poets, that’s not the purpose of the organization. We’re really about youth voice.”

“Really, it’s a vehicle for connecting with our own authentic voice. What we see is this blossoming of self-confidence, this ability to walk into a room and own it.”

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