Impact Philanthropy

Engagement in the arts is essential to every student, teacher and community member. With this belief at its core, the Van Wezel Foundation is committed to assuring each student receives a well-rounded education, each teacher has tools and resources to reach every student, and every community member has access to meaningful arts experiences.
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Arts Education for Children

Our generous donors commit themselves to strengthening the voices of tomorrow through immersion in the dramatic arts by providing a visceral learning experience. These programs build confidence and self-esteem, challenge and examine social perspectives, foster relationships through artistic collaboration, foster imagination, and create empathy through storytelling.

In Classroom Teaching Artist Visits

Starting in 2019 - 2020, the Van Wezel has enhanced its Schooltime Performances offerings to include Art Work for Schooltime Learning Modules. These in-depth lessons inspired by Schooltime Performances connect arts disciplines to other curriculum areas (Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies and more). Each module series features a lesson guide for teachers, FREE professional development, and in-classroom workshops with our professionally trained teaching artists

Schooltime Performances

Teach beyond the classroom! Van Wezel Schooltime Performances present high quality, nationally and internationally renowned artists and performances for area students. Each Schooltime Performance connects to Florida Standards through engaging, awe-inspiring performing arts.

In Classroom Teaching Artist Visits

Starting in 2019 - 2020, the Van Wezel has enhanced its Schooltime Performances offerings to include Art Work for Schooltime Learning Modules. These in-depth lessons inspired by Schooltime Performances connect arts disciplines to other curriculum areas (Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies and more). Each module series features a lesson guide for teachers, FREE professional development, and in-classroom workshops with our professionally trained teaching artists

Schooltime Performances

Teach beyond the classroom! Van Wezel Schooltime Performances present high quality, nationally and internationally renowned artists and performances for area students. Each Schooltime Performance connects to Florida Standards through engaging, awe-inspiring performing arts.

Summer Learning

Partnering with the Summer Learning Academy provides six weeks of arts education, with math and reading instruction. The overarching goal is to combat what educators refer to as the “summer slide” — the learning regression that takes place over the summer, especially among children from low-income families.

Family Literacy Nights

Family Literacy Nights help parents and caregivers connect with their children using drama, theater exercises and active learning to help young participants build literacy skills. This two generation approach brings the entire family together.

Summer Learning

Partnering with the Summer Learning Academy provides six weeks of arts education, with math and reading instruction. The overarching goal is to combat what educators refer to as the “summer slide” — the learning regression that takes place over the summer, especially among children from low-income families.

Family Literacy Nights

Family Literacy Nights help parents and caregivers connect with their children using drama, theater exercises and active learning to help young participants build literacy skills. This two generation approach brings the entire family together.

Students with Disabilities

VSA (Very Special Arts), the international organization on arts and disability, provides arts and education opportunities for people with disabilities and increases access to the arts for all. The Van Wezel is proud to bring this programming to serve over 350 students a year in 5 area schools. In addition, an ongoing partnership between Oak Park School and Lakeview Elementary School 2nd graders provides opportunities for inclusion and shared learning experiences for students with and without disabilities to foster dialogue, creativity, and an understanding of their peers.

Students with Disabilities

VSA (Very Special Arts), the international organization on arts and disability, provides arts and education opportunities for people with disabilities and increases access to the arts for all. The Van Wezel is proud to bring this programming to serve over 350 students a year in 5 area schools. In addition, an ongoing partnership between Oak Park School and Lakeview Elementary School 2nd graders provides opportunities for inclusion and shared learning experiences for students with and without disabilities to foster dialogue, creativity, and an understanding of their peers.

Professional Development

John F. Kennedy Center Partners in Education

The School Board of Sarasota County and the Van Wezel Education Department partner for this prestigious program bringing the finest arts educators to our community to work directly with teachers on arts integration teaching methods.

Art Works Professional Development

As part of Art Works for Schooltime, the Van Wezel offers a series of arts based professional development for teachers inspired by each Schooltime Performance. Workshops will enhance a teacher's ability to prepare their students for the Schooltime Performance, but strategies may be used beyond attendance. These FREE professional development opportunities are available to educators from all counties and school districts.

John F. Kennedy Center Partners in Education

The School Board of Sarasota County and the Van Wezel Education Department partner for this prestigious program bringing the finest arts educators to our community to work directly with teachers on arts integration teaching methods.

Art Works Professional Development

As part of Art Works for Schooltime, the Van Wezel offers a series of arts based professional development for teachers inspired by each Schooltime Performance. Workshops will enhance a teacher's ability to prepare their students for the Schooltime Performance, but strategies may be used beyond attendance. These FREE professional development opportunities are available to educators from all counties and school districts.

Access to the Arts

Our Access to the Arts initiative is a vital source of support for our community, opening the door to the performing arts for youth, seniors and individuals with free and low-cost opportunities to see, experience and participate in live shows and events.

Total Access

Total Access is a program designed to provide local families with young children the opportunity to experience several live performances at the Van Wezel over the course of the season free of charge.

Arts for All

The Van Wezel Foundation partners with dozens of local organizations that provide education, health and social services in our community the opportunity to attend performances at deeply discounted rates. Partners include Girls Inc., Big Brothers Big Sisters, All Faith’s Food Bank, The Pines, Easter Seals, Friendship Centers, SPARCC, Make a Wish and more.

Total Access

Total Access is a program designed to provide local families with young children the opportunity to experience several live performances at the Van Wezel over the course of the season free of charge.

Arts for All

The Van Wezel Foundation partners with dozens of local organizations that provide education, health and social services in our community the opportunity to attend performances at deeply discounted rates. Partners include Girls Inc., Big Brothers Big Sisters, All Faith’s Food Bank, The Pines, Easter Seals, Friendship Centers, SPARCC, Make a Wish and more.

Senior Access

Designed to reach local seniors who might normally not have the ability to attend our performances, Senior Access allows the Van Wezel to provide meaningful arts experiences and promote healthy aging. Through partnerships with Casa Santa Marta, Jefferson Center, and JFCS, the Van Wezel encourages social activity and life-long exploration of the arts.

Military Access

Military Access honors current and past members of our military and provides opportunities for a therapeutic and engaging experience. Military Access shows appreciation and enhances well-being by giving veterans, active military and their families the experience of attending a professional live performance at no cost to them.

Senior Access

Designed to reach local seniors who might normally not have the ability to attend our performances, Senior Access allows the Van Wezel to provide meaningful arts experiences and promote healthy aging. Through partnerships with Casa Santa Marta, Jefferson Center, and JFCS, the Van Wezel encourages social activity and life-long exploration of the arts.

Military Access

Military Access honors current and past members of our military and provides opportunities for a therapeutic and engaging experience. Military Access shows appreciation and enhances well-being by giving veterans, active military and their families the experience of attending a professional live performance at no cost to them.

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