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Upstream Arts aims to increase the scope and scale of their Art of Relationships programming. This universally designed, arts-based program offers diverse and multi-modal methods for all students receiving Special Education services to build knowledge of healthy relationships, consent, bodily autonomy, intimacy, and more. Grounding their approach in the linkages between ableism, systemic oppression, and sexual violence, Upstream Arts also seeks to create cultures of consent within the broader community. Upstream Arts provides professional development and outreach to Education Support Professionals, Special Education Assistants, and leadership across the Minneapolis Public School district.

For more information, please reach out to info@upstreamarts.org


Organization's Mission Statement

Upstream Arts uses the power of the creative arts to activate and amplify the voice and choice of individuals with disabilities.

Why It's Needed

According to the Justice Department, people with intellectual disabilities are seven times more likely to be sexually assaulted in their lifetime than those without disabilities. In response to this epidemic, Upstream Arts has created The Art of Relationships, an innovative arts-based course on sexual health and relationships, specifically designed for individuals with disabilities. The Art of Relationships provides accessible experiential learning through arts activities that allow participants to discuss and understand their right to bodily autonomy, consent and what a healthy relationship is and is not. We are incredibly grateful that, thanks to the MNCASA CPPP grant, we can bring this groundbreaking program to middle and high school students with disabilities across the Minneapolis Public School district.
Julie Guidry, Upstream Arts Executive Director

Community Partners

  • Minneapolis Public School district
  • Teen Annex Clinic