One of Toronto’s up and coming leaders in the arts, Che is the Founding Executive Director of Manifesto Community Projects and has led the organization to being recognized as one of the leading youth arts organizations in the city.
The organization also hosts the Manifesto Festival Of Community & Culture, a seven-day showcase of hip hop culture and the largest festival of its kind in Canada.
Che is an established photographer and leader within his community dedicated to fostering other young artists in his city and around the world. In 2008, he was the Executive Director for the Ignite the Americas Youth Arts Policy Forum, bringing together young artists, industry professionals, policy experts and government authorities from 30 countries to explore how arts and culture builds social inclusion and economic opportunities. Internationally and locally, he is a regular presenter at a variety of forums. In 2009, Che became a DiverseCity fellow by the Toronto City Summit Alliance.
Che will use his Vital People award to travel to Bogota, Colombia on a cultural learning exchange with the leads of La Familia Ayara, an award-winning organization. This research trip, along with learning Spanish, will help Che position Manifesto to better connect Spanish-speaking youth to their programming and to prepare him to reach out to more Toronto Latino communities. The grant will also provide Che with an opportunity to learn from and share best practices in youth arts programming.