In the Community

Guiding a new generation of entrepreneurs at Lights, Camera, Discover

How Lights, Camera, Discover is empowering youth through film and entrepreneurship

Phoenix, AZ (STN) – Lights, Camera, Discover started in 2014 as an after-school and summer program nonprofit, teaching kids the art of storytelling and filmmaking. Almost a decade later, the nonprofit has grown into a hub of creativity for kids in the Phoenix area.

Over the years, Kema Charles, Executive Director and Founder of Lights, Camera, Discover, added various programs outside of her typical filmmaking camps so kids attending her programs can start thinking about what they may want to pursue as a career path.

“In 2017, we started including an entrepreneurship program,” Charles explains. “It’s different courses to teach kids how to sell themselves, promote themselves, and market themselves.”

Watch the video to find out more about Lights, Camera, Discover’s entrepreneur program

Charles says the entrepreneurship program allows kids to develop crucial problem-solving skills and think outside the box, which are skills they will be able to use throughout their lives. She hopes that learning these skills when they are young will also help them feel like they are unstoppable when they go through high school and find careers as adults. The program also teaches kids the importance of money and shows them how to manage their money.

Initially, Lights, Camera, Discover offered the entrepreneurship program to kids in junior high through high school, but this year they opened it up to younger kids. They currently have a nine-year-old and a ten-year-old in their program running a jewelry business and a snow cone business.

“The kids created their own logo, learned how to open their own bank account, and the nine-year-old got his food handler’s license so he could sell his snow cones at pop-up shops,” Charles tells STN.

The organization sets up regular pop-up shops for the kids to showcase what they have been working on at their Ahwatukee headquarters. In the future, they would like to have a separate space for their entrepreneurship program that is away from their filmmaking edit suites and studio.

“The biggest thing that will keep this going is funding and support from the community,” says Charles. “We need people who are skilled in their field and willing to come and mentor our kids because that is a big part of the program as well. We also need the funding to hire a full-time staff and be able to get into a space of our own.”

To find out how to get involved with Lights, Camera, Discover visit their website or find them on social media @LCDProgram.

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