Field Law Scholarships to YouthWrite

The Cause

YouthWrite Society Canada respectfully requests $10,000 for the 2023 Field Law Scholarship Fund to support kids who identify as at-risk, low income, new Canadian, BIPOC, LGBTQ2S+ or youth with mental and physical health challenges to attend YouthWrite, camps for kids who love to write…just about anything!

YouthWrite® has provided a safe refuge for artistic kids for the last 26 years. Let us tell you about R, who came shyly to camp, struggling with a host of issues: death of her mother, fetal alcohol effect, substance abuse barely in cheque, intergenerational trauma born of the residential school system. At YouthWrite, she found her words. She found a way to tell her story. And she shared her words. At YouthWrite, Robyn began to soar. Today, she is a beautiful young adult working with at-risk youth, still finding her way, still using her words to forge a path.

Over the years, we’ve seen how YouthWrite’s focus on mental health and resiliency through creative work and community can truly save young lives, and we hope to reach more young people as we continue through these difficult times.

YouthWrite has a history of allyship with the LGBTQ2S+ community and provides safe and supportive outlets for youth of any background; we form a strong community and focus on the many ways young people learn to understand themselves, each other, and their world. At our camps, young creators can take artistic risks while working with a team of instructors and supervisors and explore new pursuits such as: yoga and writing, drumming and words, songwriting, illustrating, cartooning, scriptwriting, improvisation and writing, body percussion and words, and so much more!
In 2023 we want to bring these opportunities to more kids across Alberta. We hold our camps for youth ages 8-19 in Calgary, Edmonton, and online. While we do offer some scholarships, we need to reach more young people especially during and after this pandemic. Because more families are struggling financially, and more of Alberta’s youth need mental health support and creative community, we want to ensure youth-in-need can attend YouthWrite. We also want to make sure that more kids who might really need these camps become aware of them.We’d use a small percentage of the funding to help us reach out and build relationships with other organizations that are in contact with underserved or at-risk youth: Boys and Girls Club, Edmonton’s Intercultural Centre, Calgary Multicultural Centre, YMCA, Pride centres, foster.

Who Will it Benefit?

Through these scholarships, people ages 8-19 in Alberta will be able to attend a great camp that fosters creativity, connectivity, and community. While attendees will be the primary beneficiaries, the benefits of more campers coming to YouthWrite are felt throughout this province and beyond.

Many YouthWriters return annually to camp throughout their elementary, junior, and high school years. They stay in touch with each other and us via our social media channels and our website as they venture into post-secondary studies and careers. From our 26-year history of running camps, many alumni have chosen to enter related fields such as screen/TV writing, animation, graphics and design, playwriting, journalism, filmmaking, film reviewing, magazine editing, and English graduate studies. A good number have gone on to publish work and become professional editors. Others have chosen fields such as paleontology, acting, medicine, law, teaching, arts administration, business, police administration, library sciences, etc., where the skills honed at YouthWrite are put to good use.

Other artists and skilled workers:
Our instructors, all professional educators and artists, gain more opportunities for employment and a more diverse audience to whom they pass their experience and knowledge. Supporting the arts and artists has always been paramount to YouthWrite, and our diverse team of instructors illustrates the incredible quality of Alberta’s arts force. As well, with more kids at camp, the local cooks, printers, designers, and additional staff we employ see more regular work throughout the season.