NYAW had 338 events in 77 communities across Canada!

Well here we are, at the end of Canada’s first ever National Youth Arts Week. And what an amazing week it has been! While we didn’t know exactly what to expect when we started this journey, we have been blown away by the endless creativity, energy and enthusiasm that the Week has garnered across the country. 

Thank you to everyone across Canada who registered an event for National Youth Arts Week. We had a total of 338 events happening throughout the week in 77 communities! 

In small towns, rural hamlets, First Nations communities and large urban centres, from the Maritimes to Iqaluit and the Northwest Territories and across to Vancouver, we have seen youth artists use creative expression to create dialogue, foster a sense of community, and explore important social issues facing youth, all through the power of the arts. The events have brought together whole communities, young and old and from all walks of life, in a spirit of inter-generational and multicultural community building driven by our youth. 

Throughout the week Canadians everywhere have had the opportunity to witness the unbelievable talent our young artists have in all forms: hip hop, breakdancing, graffiti art, community gardening, lantern-making, culinary arts, theatre, filmmaking, poetry…the list goes on.    

The projects have celebrated diversity and provided a forum for youth to have their voices heard and valued in their local communities and on a national scale. The incredible partnership with the Michaëlle Jean Foundation allowed us to reach national media outlets about the Week including the CBC’s George Strombolopolous and CTV’s Canada AM, showcasing the work of our youth artists to a national audience.

This week would not have been possible without the incredible dedication and hard work of our Community Coordinators, an inspiring team of young artists and leaders who successfully mobilized and inspired their fellow youth to get involved with National Youth Arts Week. Thanks also go out to our Lead Partners that were supporting these Community Coordinators.

Although the week is over, youth arts activities continue to happen all year round. We are already starting to hear about how some of the activities planned for National Youth Arts Week will continue throughout the year, leading to longer-term sustainable youth arts programming in communities, which is the ultimate goal of this work.  

We hope that everyone who has been involved in the Week will continue to foster youth arts in their communities throughout the year, and that we will see even more of this work being showcased during National Youth Arts Week in 2013!

On behalf of the entire ANCY team, thank you so much to everyone who helped make National Youth Arts Week a success.