Last week, while attending Jalen Rose’s pre-ESPY party which benefited his Detroit charter school (The Jalen Rose Leadership Academy), actresses Elise Neal and Garcelle Beauvias – both as lovely as they are talented – took a second to talk to S2SMagazine.com about why the arts and education are so important to kids growing up.
Elise, who is a St. Jude’s Children’s Research Ambassador, has been involved in the arts since she was a child herself and stresses the importance of arts programs in schools.
“I really feel like it’s important for children to figure out something that’s gonna give them an outlet in life, and maybe that they won’t get into so much trouble growing up,” she said, adding, “I did nothing all day everyday after school but go to dance class, and that was my life and I feel like, even if it’s art, singing, dancing, anything that a kid can do that they feel better about themselves and not get in trouble, that’s the way to go.”
Like Elise, Garcelle Beauvais also possesses a strong passion for the betterment of children. As a mother of twins, Jax and Jaid. The former “Jamie Foxx Show” starlet found that even at an early age her boys, who are biracial, did not have any books that celebrated their culture…So she wrote one herself.
“For me I couldn’t find any books for my kids,” Garcelle noted. “I have twin boys that are biracial and it was really important for them to sort of celebrate and know where they’re from, see what makes them them and celebrate that,” she added.
The book is called I Am Mixed, and can be found at Amazon or at Barnes & Nobles.
Garcelle also discussed the importance of the arts programs in schools, which are continually being diminished as budgets continue to get smaller and smaller across the country.
“You have to open the arts,” Garcelle proclaimed. “It gives you a chance to be free, and creative and you become someone else and you discover so many things by being in the arts.”
You can check out Elise on TV Land’s “The Soul Man” and on the new season of BET’s hit comedy, “Real Husbands of Hollywood.” And Garcelle can be seen on TNT’s “Franklin & Bash.”