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The Value of Spoken Word for Youth | Benjamin Smith | TEDxNashville
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Added Jul 25, 2016
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Southern Word’s Executive Director Benjamin Smith makes the case for understanding spoken word youth development and education programs as a scalable approach to developing communication skills, building new learning communities, and fostering leaders; as opposed to a tool to identify and celebrate a handful of exceptional youth.

Through the literary and performing arts, Southern Word offers creative solutions for youth to build literacy and presentation skills, reconnect to their education and to their lives, and act as leaders in the improvement of their communities. We are absolutely committed to providing youth, especially in underserved communities, with as many opportunities as possible to develop and publicly present their voices both live and in print, video, audio, and digital media. This year, Southern Word will serve over 5,000 youth through programs in 8 Tennessee counties, in almost every public Nashville high school, on four Middle Tennessee public college campuses, and in a large number of Nashville Public Library branches.

This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community. Learn more at