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B4 Youth Theatre was established in 2009 by partnering with THINK (Touching Humanity in Need of Kindness) in Liberia. The pilot study of an arts education model for high risk youth was implemented in 2010 at the Children’s Rescue Center Orphanage Mission in Mt. Barclay, Liberia. This program has since flourished to reach more than 400 children in Monrovia and surrounding areas outside of the capitol city, building a reputation for quality programming for children that engages them in positive community change while bolstering their academic success. This new learning model blends arts education with public achievement to achieve a unique synthesis of creative community change through live performances and student-led projects. It all begins with imagining something different!


Jasmine L. Blanks Jones is the Founder of B4 Youth Theatre, a nonprofit that provides arts education programming for young people in Liberia, West Africa and cultural exchange programs in the United States.  Burning Barriers Building Bridges (B4) Youth Theatre empowers young people to become educated citizens through the arts. Having received her Masters degree in Public Policy from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, Blanks Jones is currently a dual PHD candidate in Education and Africana Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. 


She has been awarded Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Research Scholar, Dr. William Fontaine Fellow in Africana Studies, and is a George and Alice S. Hill Fellow in education. She currently serves as a Vital Voices Fellow in DC. She earned a BS in Music Education from Florida A&M University and taught public school music in Hartford County, Maryland for nearly seven years, with focus on world music, American music history and performance.

Blanks Jones has more than 15 years of experience youth development internationally having directed programming with children of military personnel in Japan, Hawaii, Spain, and Belgium, as well as with orphaned and foster youth and as a performer in Ghana and Ethiopia. She is driven by her passion for the arts as a medium for healing, learning, and activism.  

"I started B4Youth Theatre with one goal in mind: to make my skills and knowledge easily accessible to everyone. If there’s one thing I’m truly thankful for, it’s the opportunity to share my passion with this loyal community that just keeps on growing."

We believe in the power of the arts for community empowerment, problem-solving and peace building.

We aim to promote service through volunteerism and civic engagement using the arts to give a voice to issues often overlooked.

We recognize the importance of training young adults in the skills necessary to lead, teach, and mentor others.

We invest in collaboration between universities, NGOs, communities, businesses, and government.​

We support young people in their aspirations to become better people for a brighter future by expanding educational activities. 

We amplify the voice of those less often heard and promotes positive change.

The Team

Hannah Nentakpeh Mckay

Interim Executive Director

Silas N. Juaquellie

National Director, Liberia

Jalen Rose

Director of African Diaspora Initiatives

Marcelle Yhap

Special Events Coordinator

Phyllis Cooper

Finance Officer

Eboni Yahudah

Communications Coordinator

Tomozia Graves

Communications Associate
Content & Copyrighting

Amari Grant

Communications Associate
Digital Content

Elliot Jones Sr.

Communications Associate
Graphic Design

Channai Ricks

Media and PR Specialist

Arts Instructors

Joshua M.V. Jimmy

Senior Arts Instructor

Christophus Alorcious Suah

Senior Arts Instructor

J. Edward D. Kollie

Junior Arts Instructor

Gabriel S. Woo

Junior Arts Instructor

  • Aurelius Butler

  • Jebbeh Cole

  • Tianna Kesselly

  • Chanani Ricks

  • Rebecca Schwartz

Board of Directors

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