The Blank Canvas is extremely excited to welcome Mr. Bill Strickland to The Bahamas and into the studio. Bill is a community leader, author, and the President and CEO of the non-profit Manchester Bidwell Corporation based in Pittsburgh. The company’s subsidiaries, the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild and Bidwell Training Center, work with disadvantaged and at-risk youth through involvement with the arts and provide job training for adults, respectively.
Bill grew up in an underprivileged neighbourhood called Manchester in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; frustrated by seeing how traditional educational models were failing inner city youth, he founded the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild as an after-school program to teach children pottery skill in his old neighbourhood and built the Manchester Guild into an innovative nonprofit agency that uses the arts to inspire and mentor inner-city teenagers. The model has now successfully spread to other American and international cities and has an extremely high success rate in turning lives around—lives of the forgotten and abandoned.
The recipient of a MacArthur 'Genius' Grant, he gave an inspirational Ted Talk entitled “Rebuilding a Neighbourhood with Beauty, Dignity and Hope”. Bill now joins us on Blank Canvas to discuss the possibility of founding such a school here in Nassau and share his vision—a vision we promote on Blank Canvas—that we can save our children and our communities through art and culture.
Join the conversation! Blank Canvas airs on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. on Guardian Talk radio 96.9.