KI Community School
The KI Community School is an independent, private school founded in 2010 by a group of concerned citizens from the historic Highland Vicinity in Indianapolis. The founding group consisted of several homeschooling parents that recognized the educational and life value of small classes, individualized education and local relevance. KICS stands entering its 3rd year with a strong emphasis on high academic rigor, critical thinking, social entrepreneurship, skill development and sustainability.
Open Source Activism
Open Source Activism (OSA) is an initiative developed to explore ways to use technology to meet community needs and as a tool for transformative social change. We are currently focused on mobile web app development and hold weekly classes on Saturdays at noon at KI EcoCenter. There are three core applications that we are focusing on developing currently: a community calendar and directory, a prescription and medication reminder, and a community health worker application.
In the spring of 2012 KI Compost was created in partnership with Duos Kitchen, a neighborhood restaurant focused on healthy food. Several times each week youth pick up over 100 lbs. of food waste, which they measure, chop up, mix with the right proportion of wood chips, and add to our hot compost piles, which produce nutrient rich soil. This venture serves to reduced food waste, provide an educational experience for KI youth, and educate our local community about the importance of composting. Our future plans are to make the soil we produce available to residents and create a social enterprise to create jobs in the community.
Currently KI is developing its own aquaponics farm. An aquaponics farm is a system that creates an environment for fish and crops to grow simultaneously and symbiotically. The crops are grown via hydroponics which is the growing of crops by placing them in nutrient rich water. The nutrient rich water used by the crops is the same water used for the habitat of the fish. It’s a closed system that can be constructed indoors or out. Our system will be an indoors system. Our long term goal with aquaponics will be to utilize this as an educational platform for the community as well as a feasible approach to community economic development. Our aquaponics system is be located at the KI Eco Center.
Quality of Life Youth Engagement Initiatives
As the lead agency for Youth Engagement for the Mid-North Quality of Life Plan, KI has hosted a number of initiatives to engage youth in the neighborhood. We run a weekly after-school chess program where kids from the neighborhood can learn and improve their game while connecting with one of our young adult mentors. Every 4th Saturday of the month we host Youth Real Talk discussion about issues affecting and interesting youth. The first Thursday of every month, we host the Youth Engagement Action Team Meeting at KI open to the community. Currently the primary focus of these meetings is planning for a youth-led neighborhood summit in April 2013.