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Announcing $125,000 for youth arts training

We’re pleased to announce our Youth Arts funding program will invest $125,000 in 34 youth programs that offer arts training outside of school hours for Seattle’s middle and high school youth.

Forty immigrant teens will produce a film, write poetry and create comic books based on their lives, thanks in part to a $3,000 award to the Filipino Community Center. With a $5,000 award, Jack Straw Foundation will engage teens with chronic and critical health needs in the creation of new audio works using accessible technology. Three Dollar Bill Cinema will receive $5,000 to lead LGBTQ youth in the production of short films expressing their identity. And 10 Rainier Beach teens will create a mosaic art installation for the Lake Washington Apartment Community Garden, the result of a $4,500 award to SouthEast Effective Development.

It’s estimated the projects will engage more than 7,200 young people in about 30,000 hours of arts training throughout the city from September 2011 to September 2012.  The funded projects were chosen by a peer-review panel from a pool of 75 eligible applicants. The average award is $3,676.

“The Youth Arts program creates pathways for young people in Seattle to succeed,” said Vincent Kitch, director of the Seattle Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs. “Arts training gives young people a chance to become creative critical thinkers, to express themselves and to develop positive goals for the future while connecting with their communities and other cultures in a creative way.”

An annual funding program, Youth Arts offers awards of up to $10,000 to programs in which experienced teaching artists lead training in all arts disciplines, with priority placed on serving youth and communities with limited or no access to the arts.