Dreams of Hope
Through the arts, Dreams of Hope (DOH) develops lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and allied youth leaders who promote social change by educating audiences. DOH has established itself as Pittsburgh's only arts-focused, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and allied (LGBTA) youth (13-21) organization. The organization was founded in 2003 by Susan Haugh, current Artistic Director, with a $2,500 grant from the Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts Program of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts, and with assistance from three collaborating artists.
Recognizing the need for positive creative outlets for youth in Pittsburgh, and the need for positive LGBT role models and messages in society, Haugh founded DOH with this mission: "Through the arts, Dreams of Hope develops LGBTA youth leaders who promote social change by educating audiences."
From 2003 - 2008, DOH focused on its Performance Program. Once established, the organization branched out in an effort to support and educate a greater number of youth. Over the 2008-09 Season, DOH designed an online forum for poetry called Web Poets that allows participation from anyone who has access to the Internet. Web Poets is an exciting and innovative educational approach to connecting large numbers of youth (rural, urban, suburban) with a professional educator/poet who can provide positive feedback in a blog format. In 2009, Dreams of Hope created a 17-minute educational DVD. "That's So Gay" stars the youth performers and highlights the creative work the teens do in the performance program. And in 2010 DOH held its first annual Summer Arts Camp, QAMP!.