Charlotte Street Foundation identifies the needs and fuels the evolution of an ever-changing multidisciplinary arts ecosystem, acting as its primary provocateur. We cultivate the contemporary, the exceptional, and the unexpected in the practice of artists working in and engaging with the Kansas City Art Community
Jessica Ayala is a Kansas City writer, activist, and artist. She immigrated to the United States at the age of three with both of her parents from Colombia, South America. Ayala did not learn to speak or write in the English language until she was in the third grade. Jessica published her first series of poems at the age of eight for The Young Authors Conference. Her recent poetry has been published in two local anthologies. She is the recipient of the 2000 Missouri Speaker of the Year Award by the Metropolitan Community College League of Competitive Acting and Poetry. Additionally, she is the recipient of the 2010 Legacy Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts and Social Justice for MCCKC. Ayala joins this year’s prestigious list of POP! Poetry writers. “Huelga” is a collection of poems spanning ten years during Ayala’s time inside the classroom, lobbying, and working with high school youth. “Huelga” takes a critical look at the social, political and cultural injustices of Latin America, awakening the untold stories of the indigenous diaspora of The Americas. Jessica’s current poetic memoir, Just A Kid From Ipiales, will be released spring of 2018 highlighting her extraordinary journey as an immigrant youth in America.