Mission & Vision
Our Mission is to develop children's creativity through hands-on making with sustainable materials.
Our Vision is for all people to have an outlet for acquiring and donating reusable materials, and a resource to develop skills for employing them in a variety of ways. As reDiscover meets this need, we move closer to a culture where all waste materials can be recognized for their educational and creative value.
We achieve our mission and vision through strategic initiatives: community engagement utilizing our reuse warehouse, programs focused on education and creative expression, and shaping the next generation by working with children at our center, at schools, and in the community.
Founded in 2003, reDiscover is the outgrowth of a working group of 25 education-focused agencies and individuals in Santa Monica and Venice, including the directors of four early childhood education centers. This group aimed to devise an alternative to the uninspiring art materials then in use in local preschool and elementary school classrooms and to address these schools' limited environmental awareness. At the time, there were no opportunities in Los Angeles to donate or receive waste and scraps that had viability as art materials and could displace costly and often wasteful retail art supplies. As the organization gained expertise in creative reuse materials, its mission expanded to engage children across Los Angeles County with sustainable, materials-intensive creativity education.
While arts education had been a part of the organization from the start, in 2010, reDiscover began running a few week-long summer camps that emphasized using more intensive tools in creative reuse. With clamps, drills, handsaws, jigsaws, and a chopsaw, young tinkerers could utilize reclaimed wood in addition to the existing materials to make larger creations. This summer camp program grew threefold in 2015, and since then has spread to 6 different locations, and has given birth to a variety of programs that meet children where they are.
Today, reDiscover annually serves over 11,000 youth ages 2-18 and nearly 6,000 adults and is the only non-profit organization in Los Angeles that offers this type of creative programming. We work with more than 40 Los Angeles-area schools, libraries, museums, community centers, social service agencies, and parks departments to coordinate the delivery of our educational programs to targeted populations and the general public throughout the year. Over the past five years, reDiscover has expanded programming to include daily drop-in hours, week-long camps, and a regular schedule of workshops at our Center. Other activities feature educational programs delivered at the partners' sites to their students or communities, including many free events such as Homewalk and UCLA's Exploring Your Universe.
Cultural Equity and Inclusion Statement
reDiscover was founded in 2002 to provide arts education through recycled materials to schools in Venice and Santa Monica. Upon establishing expertise in collecting and distributing materials, reDiscover expanded its mission to engage children across Los Angeles County. A new mission statement was adopted in 2018 based on the belief that all children can be creative and deserve opportunities to express themselves. reDiscover engages diverse communities and the organizations that serve them to reach children in Los Angeles County regardless of income, sex, ethnic background, or national origin. reDiscover is committed to engaging cultural equity and inclusion in its board, staff, and audiences.
Children are creative when they are comfortable and comfortable when they are facilitated by competent and caring adults with whom they can identify. To fulfill our mission to provide creativity education and engage diverse children, reDiscover employs diverse staff and engages diverse volunteers.
To reach children with creativity education resources beyond our own programs, we provide professional development to educators, parents, and reDiscover staff, volunteers, and board members. These creativity educators are a multiplier of reDiscover’s resources. By engaging a diverse population of adults who can bring creativity education to their other organizations and home communities, reDiscover provides greater access to creativity education to children across communities in Los Angeles County.