Since 1975 CLIMB has been an innovative leader in the custom creation of interactive programming that inspires and propels people from non-dominant communities and cultures to excel and thrive despite the societal circumstances and systems that are often a barrier. Once such barrier is the English language, itself.
A multi-lingual journey through SEL.
In 2015 CLIMB partnered with Learning in Style and Osseo Adult Basic Education in the Twin Cities area to use theatre as a way to improve English Language Learners’ confidence and fluency speaking in common situations.
“The response to these classes has been excellent,” said Buffy Sedlachek, director of the performing company for CLIMB Theatre, and curriculum developer for the project. “Our lessons have covered relatable topics: health care, dealing with school officials, interacting with landlords. We had one student from Tibet tell us how his landlord was trying to increase his rent without altering the lease, and that our lesson helped him find the words to deal with that situation. It’s wonderful to see how the program has benefitted people in their day-to-day lives.”
In 2019 CLIMB premiered, Color of Memory. Primarily delivered in Spanish, this bullying prevention play exercised the skill A.R.E.A.S. of empathy and self-regulation for 3rd-5th grade students.
When the global pandemic forced CLIMB Theatre to cancel its 7 city tour of Grandpa & Lucy (an adaptation of a children’s book that raised awareness, increased empathy and grew resiliency in communities around Alzheimer’s Disease), we partnered with several counties in Wisconsin to expand our Intergenerational programmatic offerings by creating and adding Intergenerational Connections to our CLIMB ON-Demand Digital platform.
An innovative approach to memory care.
In 2015 CLIMB Theatre piloted a new residency based program called, Elders CLIMBing. Inspired by our arts integrated, interactive theatre techniques and propelled by a belief that youthful play is for ALL AGES, this residency program brought CLIMB out of the schools and into senior communities and memory care facilities throughout the state of Minnesota.
In 2019 we began the process of expanding this work into an intergenerational model that engaged young people in these efforts.
Inspired by a children’s book written and illustrated by Edie Weinstein and her 9th grade classmates, CLIMB reached out to the young author (at the time in 11th Grade) and set out to amplify her commitment to creating opportunities that offered a bridge of connection between youth and individuals living with Alzheimer’s and other forms of Dementia.
Owing to the support of an Arts Access Grant through the MN State Arts Board, CLIMB developed Bridging Memories. Through this grant, CLIMB adapted Grandpa & Lucy into a play that toured through MN. While touring, CLIMB worked to identify more high school aged youth in the hopes that they would be inspired and join in our efforts. 4 high school students emerged from St. Paul Conservatory of Performing Artists(SPCPA). These students were then trained to deliver CLIMB’s elders residencies and after delivery created a public performance piece that was inspired by their experience.
By supporting and amplifying the voice of Edie and the SPCPA students, this project exemplified CLIMB’s mission to inspire and propel young people towards acts that benefit themselves, each other, and their community.
In 2020 the success of our work in MN led to the development of a summer tour of Grandpa and Lucy: The Play through seven cities in Wisconsin. The pandemic, however, led to its cancellation.
Determined to keep this work going despite the pandemic, CLIMB partnered with Aging and Disability Resource Centers (ADRCs) from 24 counties throughout Wisconsin to created a digital platform that provided arts integrated, interactive learning opportunities to raise awareness and build empathy and resilience amongst elementary age youth with Intergenerational Connections.
This digital resource is now free to every resident within the geographic boundaries of:
Barron, Calumet, Crawford, Dane, Dodge, Grant, Green, Iowa, Jefferson, Juneau, La Crosse, Lafayette, Monroe, Outagamie, Pierce, Richland, Rock, Rusk, Sauk, St. Croix, Vernon, Washburn, Waupaca, and Winnebago Counties
Today our programming is able to be in person, once again and CLIMB remains committed to ensuring that opportunities for intersectional, intergenerational interactions exist in all communities.
In November, CLIMB will tour Grandpa and Lucy, the play again and will be performing throughout the states of Minnesota and Wisconsin. Additionally our elders residencies will be available to senior care facilities as well as to the general public.
Connect with us to explore ways that CLIMB can work with you to create and deliver opportunities that expand intergenerational connections in your community!
CLIMB Theatre creates customized plays, classes and workshops that build accountability, resiliency, empathy, advocacy and self-control. CLIMB inspires people to make the world a better place.
6415 Carmen Ave E
Inver Grove Heights, MN 55076