Opportunity Now students at Moves and Grooves Nashville

Restorative Arts

The Restorative Arts program is a collaboration between Metro Arts, the Metro Nashville Davidson County Juvenile Court (JJC), and their Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) contracted provider to create an arts-integrated intervention system for court-involved youth that focuses on resiliency, positive youth development, and restoring empowered youth and families.

Under the leadership of Judge Sheila Calloway, JJC officials support court-involved youth to heal, grow and thrive by assessing each individual’s skills and needs and connecting them and their families to resources aimed at health and well-being. As there is growing evidence that long term, sustained arts learning and arts experiences have deep and lasting positive impact on children’s cognitive development, through this partnership, we are helping to facilitate artists to create programming inclusive of children and youth who have been involved with the justice system. Through these arts interactions, youth develop a growing capacity for emotional attachment, empathy, reasoning, decision-making, trust, self-identity, and self and community esteem.

Through quality programming that is trauma-informed and anchored in positive youth development practices, the program positions the arts as a part of restorative practice and creates a protective environment for court-involved youth to heal, grow and thrive. Introducing them to a wide variety of art forms (drumming, dance, theater, spoken word, visual art, etc.) not only unlocks their potential by teaching skills in perseverance, self-expression, empathy, community building, but also empowers the youth to make more positive choices.

FY21 Restorative Arts Guidelines (deadline extended)

FY21 Restorative Arts Application

Current Restorative Arts Projects 

Contact Janine Christiano at or 615-862-6744 with questions.

Opportunity NOW Arts Experiences


The Metro Arts site partners for 2020 Opportunity NOW youth arts experiences are:

  • From the Heart International Education Foundation

  • Global Education Center

  • Kings Daughters Child Development Center

  • Martha O’Bryan & Explore Community School w/Prado Studios

  • Notes for Notes

  • Southern Word

  • Turnip Green Creative Reuse

  • Watkins College of Art

  • Women of Color Collaborative

Opportunity NOW is a coordinated initiative to provide young people in Davidson County with work readiness training and access to employment. The initiative was created based on recommendations from the Mayor’s Youth Violence Summit as a way to connect youth to opportunity and to hope. Opportunity NOW is designed to combat the growing gap in opportunity, delivering employment and employment-like opportunities for young people.

As part of its mission to strengthen the creative workforce and deepen artistic participation in Nashville, Metro Arts partners with the Nashville Career Advancement Center to provide project-based work experiences that are centered in the arts for young people ages 14-16 during the summer.

Contact Janine Christiano at or 615-862-6744 with questions.

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