The 12th annual A3C Festival & Conference, in partnership with Atlanta’s Center for Civic Innovation, is pleased to announce seven (7) finalists for the second annual A3C Action initiative where organizations across the country submit ideas that use art, music, and/or hip hop culture as a vehicle to advance social justice and civic engagement. A3C Action received 140 applications from 25 states in the second year of the program. Finalists will pitch their ideas to a panel of judges on October 7, 2016, competing for over $10,000 in cash and in-kind contributions. The Center for Civic Innovation provides two (2) days of intensive business training, mentor sessions, and pitch preparation to finalists.

A3C Action amplifies creative projects that address systemic social justice challenges and increase opportunities for civic engagement to increase diverse audiences of creatives at the public problem-solving table.

The 2016 A3C Action finalists are:

•  Armed Services Arts Partnership - ASAP (Arlington, VA) empowers veterans and their communities with purpose and healing to have a voice in their communities through a stand-up comedy boot camp.

•  Creative Core (Washington, DC) offers a fellowship program for youth who are in school, have dropped out, or are court-involved to prepare and place them as support staff in creative businesses with a focus in the arts, music, and hip-hop industries.

•  Girls Make Beats (Miami Lakes, FL) teaches young girls music production, DJing, and audio engineering through an after school program at a state of the art recording studio. They mentor and nurture girls to have their voice heard, and create future career opportunities for participants.

•  Notes for Notes (Atlanta, GA) equips, staffs, and runs free recording studios, providing music education and mentorship for youth for 160 members in a censor-free environment.

•  re:Imagine/ATL (Atlanta, GA) is equipping media’s next generation of storytellers,  working with teens of different backgrounds across Atlanta to collaborate on video and music productions in and out of school.

•  Shooting Without Bullets (Cleveland, OH) is a revolutionary youth advocacy and fine arts education program that focuses on identity development in black teens in Cleveland through photovoice, expressive arts healing, and open dialogue.

•  The Village of Arts and Humanities (Philadelphia, PA) offers a paid internship and media-centered makerspace that positions youth as experts on issues impacting them, while providing a platform to process and amplify their narratives, experiences, and voices.

“As A3C grows we feel a strong responsibility to give back to our community. We tried numerous partnerships and initiatives over the years and for the first time we have a partner that helps us achieve what we imagined. In 2015, we partnered with the Center for Civic Innovation to make A3C Action a priority. We’ve been overwhelmed by the support from our community and by the number and quality of applications from across the country, and are enthusiastic about the program’s future. We are honored to work with these amazing organizations, and we can’t wait to see them pitch and to support their efforts,” Mike Walbert, Executive Director of A3C Festival and Conference.

“The story of Atlanta is built on a narrative of creatives playing a vital role in moving the needle on social justice challenges that the city faces,” said Rohit Malhotra, Founder and Executive Director of the Center for Civic Innovation. “A3C Action aims to build on this narrative by supporting incredible people in our own city and around the country. The individuals that we work with through A3C Action are already doing the work on the ground. Our job is to help them tell their story better to the rest of the world.”

About A3C Festival & Conference

A3C Festival & Conference is the preeminent hip-hop event in the US, commonly referred to as, “hip-hop’s family reunion.”  The independently produced A3C Festival & Conference has grown organically from a regional showcase to an internationally recognized and nationally acclaimed cultural experience. A3C strives to empower, engage and energize the community that shape and define hip-hop culture. The A3C Festival will continue to provide the best platform for artist discovery, while celebrating Hip-Hop's trailblazers, influencers and milestones. Live performances from over 1,000 of Hip-Hop's most iconic, talented and promising artists take place across 75+ shows in the Old 4th Ward and East Atlanta Village. The 2016 A3C Conference will examine the intersection of Music, Technology and Culture.  The A3C Conference is an unparalleled opportunity to connect and learn from Hip-Hop influencers, artists, organizations, and industry experts.  The Conference Center and Pro-Audio Center will remain at the Loudermilk Center and SAE Institute of Atlanta, respectively. 

About Center For Civic Innovation

The Center for Civic Innovation is a community-driven research and development lab for local governments, nonprofits, and social entrepreneurs. Our mission is to push Atlanta to be a smart, equitable, and engaged city by investing in community-driven ideas, supporting social enterprises, and engaging people in dialogue and action. For more information, please visit www.civicatlanta.org


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Tresa Sanders


A3C Festival & Conference


Rachel Stanley


Membership & Communications Manager

Center for Civic Innovation