Make Your ImpACT was developed in 2021 as an adaptation of ImpACT on Stage. Founded in 2014, ImpACT on Stage strives to promote and enact social change through the use of live theater, by students for students. Through a variety of interactive programs battling such issues as bullying and inclusion, consent and relationship violence, substance abuse, and human trafficking, we hope to bring increased awareness to prevalent social issues, provide students and educators with concrete tools to advocate for themselves and for their peers and colleagues, and establish a culture of compassion and kindness.
At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic in March of 2020, ImpACT on Stage implemented an indefinite pause on our interactive, in-school programming to ensure the health and safety of our team and the students with whom we work. Nearly two years later, we found ourselves back in a frighteningly familiar position: facing rising COVID-19 case numbers, the reimplementation of mitigation measures, and an overall sense of uncertainty about what the future holds. And yet, over this time we also witnessed tremendous strides in social justice, as the conversations about kindness, empathy, and inclusion that ImpACT has long championed became more commonplace.
As we reflected on how we could leverage our unique skills and assets to serve our mission in a post-COVID environment, we remained steadfast in our belief in the power of interactive performance to spark discussion and bring about change, but also recognized that the realities of the current environment would make it near impossible for us to continue operating as we had for the past decade. As such, we decided that for the time being, we will no longer be implementing the “UpStander ImpACT” in-school programming.
In lieu of our performance-based programs, we developed the Make Your ImpACT Initiative at the end of 2021, which is better adapted to serve the community in a post-COVID world, but also stays true to our original mission and roots in the arts. As we continue forward with this new initiative, we look back fondly on our time as ImpACT on Stage, and are excited to continue making positive change in a new way.