Our Story

  • Our Story
  • Our Story
  • Our Story
  • Our Story
RHAP began in the summer of 2006 with just one tutor (Deirdre Swords) and three students meeting in Red Hook's Coffey Park on Saturday afternoons to make art together.

We now have two levels of visual art tutoring, two levels of music tutoring, homework help / academic tutoring four or five afternoons a week and, as of 2016, RHAP is made up of approximately 20 tutors and 30 youth. RHAP's Success Stories: RHAP has helped two of our oldest students apply to and get accepted to college! One is at SUNY-Oneonta studying psychology and art therapy and the other is at SUNY - FIT studying fine art and illustration. RHAP's first generation of students (after working with RHAP tutors for three years) gained acceptance to the Fiorello LaGuardia High School of the Arts, the High School of Art and Design and the Edward R. Murrow High School. In 2012, RHAP's founder, Deirdre Swords, was honored with the Brooklyn Community Board Six Robert Acito Award for Youth Involvement. In 2015 RHAP's first student, Tashawn Davis, was honored with one gold key for portfolio, and five gold keys, two silver keys and two honorable mentions for individual pieces in the regional level of Scholastic's Art and Writing Competition. In addition, he received four silver keys and two gold keys on the national level of the same competition - the most awards out of any winner!

Our Programs

Music Program


Our students develop their self-esteem, self-expression, creativity and social responsibility by working with mentors who are recording artists, engineers, producers, musicians and song-writers.

Special Events & Workshops


RHAP organizes special events and special workshops in related creative fields, as well as anger management and healthy eating, for our students and their parents.

– RHAP Responds to Banksy

– RHAP’S first student, Tashawn was interviewed by NBC News. (2015)

– Group trip to the Museum of Modern Art. (2015)

– Video-Pal Workshop with transmedia artists, Joel & Katy Mejia

– Rhap joined Red Hook Fest! (2015) Everyone had the opportunity to join the Rhap table to make art that reflect on Red Hook Peace land!

Visual Art Program


RHAP provides classes and one-on-one tutoring to children and youth who have shown a previous dedication to their artistic talent.

Homework Help


“Believe in yourself and you can do unbelievable things.”

On Monday through Thursday afternoons and evenings RHAP volunteer tutors provide Homework Help to all of our Visual Art and Music students.

We have discovered that our students, even if they are extremely talented in Visual Art and Music, sometimes need help with their schoolwork. And we have some wonderful tutors who are not artists or musicians but want to help these amazing children and youth!

Be a volunteer & make a difference in a child’s life!

“Surround yourself only with people who are going to take you higher.” – Oprah Winfrey


Meet the Team

Deirdre Swords

Deirdre Swords

Tiffiney Davis

Tiffiney Davis