August 30, 2021

SAY Sí Staff and Leadership have worked through pandemic, construction and snow storms to get to move into our new home and be reunited with our community. As we begin to serve in-person again, we are keeping in mind the health and safety of our young people and the responsible mentors who care for them.

For that reason, the COVID-19 vaccine is a requirement to learn, work and create in-person at SAY Sí. ALL outside visitors must be scheduled during the day when students are not in our building and all folx in our building must wear a mask and follow our in-person safety protocols. Before participating in-person for sessions all students will need to submit their vaccine card or other proof of receipt of the vaccine. We will add more information and updated registration forms to family-portal and email them out on Monday.

We will continue to offer virtual sessions for those students not eligible or able to be vaccinated. Being at SAY Sí may look different right now than it did before COVID-19, but we are still committed to creating a safe and healthy space for San Antonio youth. The new less-intense requirements for high schoolers are to respect the staff’s capacity, our adapting to new safety and cleaning protocols and to respond to the adjustment of your school-lives. Your help in respecting the safety protocols is how you can do your part to keep our community healthy and COVID-free.

FAQ ABOUT SAY Sí In-Person Work

How did you come to this decision?
In making decisions about how to keep all learners healthy and cared for and our staff safe, SAY Sí leadership is closely monitoring CDC guidelines and the advice of our local health officials. Vaccination is the leading public health prevention strategy to end the COVID-19 pandemic. Promoting vaccination can help schools and extracurricular programs safely return to in-person learning. It is our intention to do both. Based on a large number of our students having received the vaccine our staff has decided to re-introduce in-person learning with this cohort of students first.

Understandably, as a local nonprofit our resources and staff capacity are limited so we are designing our programs and schedules to serve as many students as we can while minimizing risk of spreading the virus. This is beginning with our vaccinated students.

Why do only vaccinated students get to return to in person?
For the first time in our 27 years, the risk of spreading a life-threatening illness to and amongst the young people who make up SAY Sí is our top barrier to providing learning experiences. To describe the challenge of serving San Antonio youth in the most equitable and community-focused way we can as “difficult” is an understatement. The staff of SAY Sí have taken into consideration the multiple health circumstances and needs of our students when designing a schedule of providing safe learning opportunities for all.

At this time, the decision to work with unvaccinated youth virtually allows those unvaccinated students to participate safely from home with no risk of contracting COVID-19 through their SAY Sí activities. In addition, any in-person opportunities that have been opened to vaccinated students is in limited number and exposure time in the building. This slow introduction of more students is going to teach us how to stay safe, sanitized and social distanced while being teaching and mentoring.

How long until students can return to in-person regardless of vaccine status?
SAY Sí teaching artists and staff make their own decisions about their personal safety in performing their jobs and delivering SAY Sí’s mission. These decisions are informed by the guidance of the CDC and San Antonio’s health leaders. We are monitoring the risk level our city is at and the positivity cases occuring for schools and families. After agreeing on what we are able to safely offer we hold our students safety and well-being as central to how we create programming. If and when the risk level and positivity rate is lower and the number of vaccinated community members is safer we can review our protocols and program offerings.

What if my child isn’t eligible for the vaccine or otherwise cannot safely get vaccinated?
We absolutely understand some health needs and other circumstances can keep a young person from receiving the vaccine therefore will continue online programming for those students at higher risk of contracting COVID-19.

February 12, 2021

Thanks for checking in on us. Our resiliency through this time has only been possible because of our community of support –  students, their families, the dedicated staff and board leaders, donors and volunteers and people like you. From the packs of pencils left in our art supply donation bin to large gifts from responsive donors and everything in between – you stepped up to help us get through this challenging time. 

As we are now into 2021, we want to share with you some news about where we are right now, and where we hope to see ourselves throughout the year. 

We’ve Moved

As of December 2020, we have officially moved out of our Southtown facility. Construction on the first phase of our 98,000sq ft facility located at 1310 South Brazos is expected to be complete this year, and we look forward to welcoming staff and students into their new home. Stay tuned for details as we work to prepare the space for the general public later this year. 

Our Programs Continue

Our programs are still virtual for now, and we are committed to being a community of support for those young artists part of our year-round long-term programs. While we are hoping to be able to start recruitment by summer we would like to direct any interested young artists to our ABC Art Studio Anywhere Online Maker Studio. There you’ll find creative videos to help build and expand your creative portfolio. In addition, we urge you to follow us on social media for any public offerings like upcoming workshops. In addition, we urge you to follow us on social media for any public offerings like upcoming workshops. 

We’re Counting On You

We’ve been fortunate and grateful to have public support from Councilwoman Gonzales and the City of San Antonio, and Bexar County Commissioner Rodriguez, and Bexar County, and recently The Charles Butt Foundation and David and Deborah Rogers provided grants to get the first phase of construction started at the historic 1310 S. Brazos warehouse.

However, there’s a lot of work that still needs to be done, and we are still raising funds for the completion of the project. Please help us by spreading the word about our ongoing Capital Campaign and, if you are able, no investment is too small. Every donation lays another brick in the foundation of SAY Sí’s future on the westside.

What’s Next?

Right now, we are looking forward to settling into our new home and welcoming our community when the first phase of the project is complete. As we take our first steps into the westside, we think it’s important to take this time to reset and assess what’s next. Part of that is hearing from our community. We are distributing a community survey that will allow us to get quality feedback about how you interact with us and what you’d like to see more of in these next steps of our journey. You can find that survey HERE


We are an organization that is invested in the success and care of youth in our city. We are eager to work in person with our youth again, but only when it is safe to do so. Our leadership is currently working with others to advocate for teachers, educators and youth practitioners to be among those regularly tested and also vaccinated for COVID-19. 
We are committed to continue to engage with the community online through social media and our ABC Art Studio Anywhere maker space at We hope that our videos and content inspire you to be creative and find art in your everyday life.

SEPTEMBER 17, 2020

To Our SAY Sí Community,

At SAY Sí we believe that our work and the arts have the power to heal, lift, and build community. Creatives have this instinctual process to problem solve, try new ideas, push through obstacles, and connect all of the pieces that make us whole.  

During this time, we wanted to share an update on our work and future.  

Providing Resources to Our Youth & Families: 

SAY Sí has always been looked at as a local and national model in support of creative and lifelong learning for young people. Our model, and that focus, continue now more than ever. Early on during the pandemic, we recognized that we needed to meet our students where they were and build new structures to support them and their families. This summer with the current city, country, and global virus issues growing, we partnered with funders, school districts, and local organizations to make sure that all our students who needed technology devices and hotspots have them, both for our creative programs and for their educational achievement.

Virtual Programming Through Fall: 

Since March, when students could not return to school or in-person programming, our staff worked brilliantly to shift and change, to use our creative talents and experience to continue to provide virtual creative learning and to also focus on our strengths with trauma-informed care. 

This has included a shift in SAY Sí events, with our first virtual showcase of student work in July and more planned throughout the fall.

Again, the creative power of transformation, from both our staff and students, has helped build this new learning model. We know that working together, with you, and our community, that our students will emerge from this time stronger and more resilient. 

At SAY Sí, we believe strongly in the power of science and data and do not intend to put our students or staff health and lives at risk. So we will not start in-person learning until we can confirm it is safe to do so. This may mean waiting for a vaccine.

Expanded Community Learning Resources:

Recently we also redesigned our home page to strengthen our reach beyond our core students.  We designed ABC Art Studio Anywhere, an Online Makerspace that provides free arts and community resources to everyone.  We have adapted our community programs that serve SAISD schools and organizations like Clarity Child Guidance Center and University Health System’s hospitals and clinics.  These programs are run by alumni and talented teaching artists.  Later this month, we have scheduled our second free art supply pick-up for the community in an ongoing effort to get creative resources in the hands of San Antonio youth.

SAY Sí’s Move to 78207:

Many have asked about our move to 78207, the westside of San Antonio. The current health crisis has delayed our hope to be there soon – but we will get there slowly but surely.  That beautiful building at 1310 South Brazos, by the Apache Creek, in the cultural heart of our city, is ours and we are revising our timeline and budget to accommodate starting small and building and growing, just the way we began 25 years ago.

We want to thank our community of funders that have allowed us to shift our programming focus that has supported our commitment to investing in our students and staff.  The remainder of this year is looking different for all of us, and we are forecasting what 2021 will look like in our new spaces. We are also spending some time reimagining what that future looks like, again something artists and creatives do well.  

Thanks to our staff, students, and families for their unwavering support and understanding.  Shout out to our Board of Directors, leadership council, and campaign committee members, as they have not missed a beat.  

So again, from ALL of us – WE thank you!

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