Dream a Difference began in 2016 as a poetry project connecting small schools in the United Kingdom with others in Jordan, Palestine, Malaysia and Zimbabwe. During 2017, Nevada County Arts Council piloted this program in the United States and, during 2018-19, will again partner with Twin Ridges Schools District to coach children in poetry at Washington and Grizzly Hill Schools.
Washington and Grizzly Hill Schools are situated on the Western Slope of the Sierra Nevada. Deeply remote and forming one of the smallest school districts in the US, students form part of an emerging global community of young people who are gaining awareness and learning empathy for the way others live and, in the spirit of sharing the poetry they write in the form of song and recitation, will share their own experience of life in rural California.
Students at these schools are also offered an opportunity to recite their poems at the Sierra Poetry Festival which takes place during national poetry month each year. Here they meet our Poetry Out Loud participants, gaining valuable foundational insight and preparation towards this nationally recognised high school program.