Photo: Sean Blair, courtesy of Calgary Girls Choir 

INSPIRING YOUTH

Everyone wants our youth to have the foundation they need for a full and rewarding life. Some will grow up to be professional artists, but no matter what their path, arts experiences help build essential 21st-century skills like creative thinking, confidence, teamwork, discipline, and social interaction.

Trevor, Davey, and Cody | Photo: Courtesy of The Napi Collective

The Napi Collective

Trevor Solway grew up on the east end of Siksika Nation—the quiet part. “People who live on the east end are farmers and ranchers. Nothing happens on the east end near Clooney,” Solway says. Those people included Solway’s grandfather, who in addition to being a farmer, trained race horses. One day, he took Solway horse shopping, to a thoroughbred sale that also had an animal young Trevor had never seen before. “I remember when I first saw one, I said grandpa, look at that funky horse!” Solway says. “He said, those are called llamas.” Solway was transfixed.

IN 2018:

0
arts education activities provided by Calgary arts organizations for children and youth
0
participants in arts education activities provided by Calgary arts organizations

Based on data from organizations funded in part through Calgary Arts Development.

A study by Business for the Arts found that:

0
%
of Canadian parents believe that engaging children in the arts is important for their development
0
%
of Canadians believe that arts education improves children’s academic performance
0
%
of Canadians believe that the arts help children from disadvantaged communities succeed

Building the Case for Business Support of the Arts, Business for the Arts, February 2015.

WordsWorth

WordsWorth is summer camp for language lovers. The week-long program, created by the Alberta Writers Guild, brings 40 young people aged 11 to 19 together in Kananaskis country between July 14 and August 2. It’s a lot like all summer camps have been doing ever since there were kids and a summer to kill before going back to school in the fall. At this camp, however, the kids use those woods to fuel their imaginations, as they write the stories of their lives. WordsWorth director Colin Matty says, “In the past we’ve offered everything from experimental poetry, genre fiction, and journalism to improv, book binding, songwriting, podcasts… the program uses creative writing as an entry point to all manner of creative arts.”

Participants in WordsWorth summer camp | Photo: Courtesy of Alberta Writers Guild

Young adults with many arts-rich experiences in high school are:

0
x
more likely to graduate high school
0
x
more likely to earn a bachelor's degree

… and they are more likely to volunteer, vote and participate in political campaigns.

Participants in the Youth Empowerment Program | Photo: Courtesy of the Philippine Festival Council of Alberta

SNAPSHOT

YEP PROGRAM

The Youth Empowerment Program (YEP) is a project of the Philippine Festival Council of Alberta, the organization behind the annual Fiesta Filipino in Calgary. Presented in partnership with Arts Commons and Calgary Arts Development, YEP is all about youth engagement (ages 13 to 25) through introduction and hands-on experience of Filipino arts, culture, and heritage in the Canadian setting. To increase the youth’s sense of belonging and sense of identity of being Filipino-Canadian, YEP works with artists as mentors in delivering free workshops on visual, performing, and other types of arts such as filmmaking, writing, poetry and spoken word, dance, and more in order to gain confidence, and feel more integrated, creative, and involved in the community.

SNAPSHOT

WE ARE ALL TREATY PEOPLE

We Are All Treaty People—a collaboration between Quest Theatre and Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society—is an innovative theatrical adventure in which Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists explore the shared history of our ancestors. The show, which is designed for all ages of young people, is 50-minutes in length and followed up with a Q&A session with the cast. It premiered in April of 2017 and has since been seen by more than 47,000 young people in 147 schools and other venues mostly across Calgary but also across Alberta and in Toronto. The show was so popular in 2018 that there was a waiting list of 50 schools wishing to book it. Quest Theatre will once again take the show on tour in 2019/20.

We are all Treaty People | Photo: Justina Gibson, courtesy of Quest Theatre