Our Projects

Dock Street Foundation takes action in our Eastern Shore communities where we see that we can make a difference. See some of our recent projects below.

Talbot educators travel to see Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway - an award winning musical about teen suicide.

Talbot educators travel to see Dear Evan Hansen on Broadway - an award winning musical about teen suicide.

Dear Evan Hansen

Forty local educators, social workers, nonprofit leaders and others serving youth visited Broadway to see the award winning musical “Dear Evan Hansen.”  The musical tells the story of a teenage social group’s unraveling after the suicide of one of its members. The daylong event brought together adults from many different youth-supporting local institutions in an effort to build a wider network to support youth in the region.

Participants included representatives from Talbot County Public Schools, the YMCA, Talbot Mentors, For All Seasons, Inc., The Country School, Saints Peter and Paul School, Chesapeake Multicultural Resource Center, Channel Marker, Chesapeake College, Eastern Shore Psychological Services, CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and the Talbot County Deputy State’s Attorney, and was sponsored by Dock Street Foundation.

Participants said that the poignant musical drove home the powerful impact one person can have on the life of a troubled teenager. Traveling together for the day allowed for discussions about how to comprehensively address youth mental health and suicide in Talbot County.

Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the US, with 144,793 Americans dying by suicide each year. And for every suicide, 25 attempts are made.

Suicide prevention efforts have increased in recent years across Maryland and across the Mid-Shore. In the five counties of the Mid-Shore (Kent, Queen Anne’s, Talbot, Dorchester and Caroline) in 2014, almost 15% of middle school students and 13% of high school students reported that they seriously considered suicide at some point during the school year.  Thirteen percent of those high school students went so far as to actually make a plan to kill themselves. The highest numbers of students reporting feeling suicidal are students who identify as gay, lesbian or bisexual.

“Having a chance to increase community awareness and to increase agency collaboration related to child & adolescent mental health needs and resources in Talbot County offers an opportunity to possibly change the trajectory of a young life” said Robert Schmidt, Behavior Specialist at Talbot County Public Schools who is also a nationally known youth suicide expert. “This was an opportunity for community partners working with youth to increase skill development and understanding of the turbulent times of adolescence” he said.

Since the show, several of the organizations are working together to build a community-wide campaign to address the needs of parents and youth surrounding stress and pressures of social media, depression, anxiety and suicide prevention. The new campaign will be launched before the start of the 2018/2019 school year.

The Jowite Community and Youth Garden is a new 2017 Dock Street Foundation project. 

The Jowite Community and Youth Garden is a new 2017 Dock Street Foundation project. 

Jowite Community and Youth Garden

In spring of 2017, we set out to create a youth and community garden so that kids in the Port St. neighborhood of Easton have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Community members are welcome, as are youth groups. The garden is led by Garden Educator Aleya Fraser and is located on the grounds of the BAAM (Building African American Minds) community center in Easton, MD. For more information, follow the Jowite Community and Youth Garden on facebook at www.facebook.com/jowiteveggies/

You are welcome to visit the garden to learn, volunteer, help. Contact Aleya Fraser for information at (443) 955-3330.

Krista Tippett visit to Easton, MD Dock Street Foundation partnered with Aspen Wye Fellows to host award winning public radio host Krista Tippett on the Eastern Shore in November 2016. 

Krista Tippett visit to Easton, MD

Dock Street Foundation partnered with Aspen Wye Fellows to host award winning public radio host Krista Tippett on the Eastern Shore in November 2016. 

Dock Street Foundation partnered with the Aspen Institute's Wye Fellows to host award winning public radio host Krista Tippett on the Eastern Shore in November 2016. 

Award winning public radio host Krista Tippett interviewed tech entrepreneur Anil Dash onstage at the Avalon Theatre. The event was titled, “Emerging Technologies and Old-Fashioned Civics: A Conversation with Anil Dash.”

Anil Dash is a New York-based tech entrepreneur, advocate and writer who is working to make technology and the tech industry more humane, inclusive and ethical. The onstage conversation will be recorded and will simulate a live broadcast.

Tippett is known worldwide for her longstanding public radio show ‘Speaking of Faith’ and its current iteration, ‘On Being’ which explores the big questions of meaning with scientists, theologians, artists and teachers. 

American blogger, entrepreneur and technologist, Dash was previously an independent technology consultant and new media developer for the Village Voice, Dash was the first employee of Six Apart, the makers of Moveable Type, TypePad and Vox. Dash’s blog, anildash.com, is about how technology shapes and transforms society, media, government and culture.

The Wye Fellows are part of the 67-year old Aspen Institute and provide an extensive program of nine to ten dialogue events and receptions as well as two concerts annually at the Institute’s Wye River Campus near Queenstown.

Ruth Starr Rose Exhibition in Easton, MD

Ruth Starr Rose Exhibition in Easton, MD

The Easton, MD Ruth Starr Rose Exhibition

For seven weeks in 2016, the works of artist Ruth Starr Rose were exhibited at the Waterfowl Building in Easton, MD. Accompanied by docent led tours, discussions, lectures, music, video stories and local art, the Ruth Starr Rose exhibit was a 2016 highlight on the Eastern Shore.

Painter and printmaker Ruth Starr Rose's (1887-1965) lifelong vocation would be to document and celebrate the lives of her African American neighbors in the tiny, historically black towns of Copperville and Unionville, on Maryland’s Eastern Shore. Rose came from a wealthy white family that was also endowed with a keen, progressive social conscience. As she grew up, she developed an abiding love and respect for the African Americans who taught her not only practical but spiritual life lessons. A talented artist, whose work has been unjustly overlooked, Rose celebrated her African American friends and teachers in thoughtful, sensitive portraits and in arresting images of the community at work and in the maritime landscape. She also hoped to embody the religious beliefs she shared with her neighbors as she worshipped alongside them in an A.M.E. church in a series of illustrations of spirituals. 

Dock Street Foundation was honored to present a collection of Rose’s work beginning with portraits of African Americans that she painted as early as the 1920s. This was the first time in nearly a century that these works, recently rediscovered along with the artist’s original notes, have been exhibited. Rose’s portraits, many of them done in oil, accord their subjects a refreshing dignity that was revolutionary at the time they were painted. The exhibition also includes her work in other genres, including landscape, and in other media, such as lithography. Rose’s art truly expands our knowledge of the lives and histories of America’s earliest black communities.

Return to Afghanistan exhibit

In 2010, we partnered with the Women and Girls Fund to host "Return to Afghanistan" - a rich and colorful Afghan-inspired exhibit of photographs and handmade kites from Afghanistan. Artists Joseph N. Hoyt and Zalmai were in attendance. Hoyt's black and white photographs showed images of Afghanistan in the 70s, before Russia invaded the country, and Zalmai, an Afghan-born photographer documented his homeland after 24 years in exile, in transition from drought, famine and war.

Over 100 handmade kites made by kite master Basir Beria, some of which were featured in the Kite Runner film, also adorned the exhibit space. And on October 22, The Kite Runner author Khaled Hosseini joined the most recent Afghan ambassador Said T. Jawad, a resident scholar from the University of California and an Afghan student visiting the US for a panel discussion.