Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Welcome to the AWOL Blog

Well, this blog spot is long over due for AWOL. So much has gone into building Savannah's first and only federally recognized Poetry and Hip-Hop based youth development organization over the past 5 years. Its now time to let everybody know the weekly happenings at AWOL, and perhaps even solicit some feedback from all of our fans out there, or the AWOL Groupies (this is of course a fond nickname..lol) So let's get this thing under way with a brief intro and history.

History-Okay. AWOL was founded in 1997 by this guy. Tony "Polo" Jordan on the campus of Savannah State University. The group was at first just a group of artist, MCees, Breakers, Poets, who all shared a love for hip-hop culture. The group became organized after being told they were illegally using University facilities for informal gatherings without proper documentation. The needed a requisition in order to gather at the facilities, which was precluded by the need to be a registered campus organization. So, thus was the creation of AWOL All Walks of Life, Inc.

So what happens next? Well, as members grew and went on to their prospective careers after graduation , AWOL moved off campus and into the community. AWOL also spawn the development of two new spoken word organizations, Spitfire Poetry Group and WORD (Way of Real Discovery). All three organizations have become staples of the Savannah spoken word and hip-hop scene, with each fulfilling different roles. Spitfire Poetry Group which host local adult and youth events and the annual Spoken Word Festival has a huge following of some of Savannah's hottest poets and hip-hop artist. WORD on the other hand remains the primary spoken word organization for students at Savannah State as a campus based organization.

AWOL leaders chose a different approach, and turned the organization into a federally recognized non-profit in 2004. AWOL's mission is to Promote and Provide self-awareness through the use of Poetry, Hip-Hop and Life. This mission is met by providing at risk youth with arts and technology programs during the hours most relevant to them, after school and at night. AWOL programs encourage respect, creativity, education and most of all non-violence.

Alright folks, so that was the beginning. Check back and I'll fill you in on what's happening now with AWOL.

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