Three years ago, two queer Toronto women set out to find a new way to improve the lives of LGBTQ* youth. They saw a gap in public school curriculums where sexuality and gender identity education were missing.
Today, CANVAS is proud to have visited over 25 schools and 15 camps, running over 150 interactive, arts-based workshops, reaching over 4,500 young people across the city!
Last year, we were able to run an incredible 81 Speak OUT workshops for youth within the Peel District School Board; a workshop that promotes LGBTQ* inclusion.
Speak OUT uses art to encourage participants to foster empathy, resulting in the creation of unique posters and photos promoting positive and powerful messages for the LGBTQ* community.
We've seen countless students become passionate allies right before our eyes, while others have come out to facilitators after completing a workshop, telling them how empowering and meaningful the experience was.
The youth we've spent time with over the past two years have been quoted after our workshops, saying things like:
"I now know that we are the solution and the change",
"It lets us recognize our true selves".
To keep the Speak OUT program running for the 2017/18 school year, it is imperative that we subsidize the program for public schools with financial barriers.
Sadly, almost three quarters of transgender youth in Canada experience harassment, and more than half of LGBTQ+ students feel unsafe in school. Additionally, 86% of students in schools we visited had not received any education on LGBTQ+ inclusion.
With funds collected from this campaign, we will be able to:
-Compensate educators for their dedication and hard work
-Cover travel expenses to and from schools
-Pay for program materials, such as markers, pens, and paper, and compile resources students can use for additional support
-Discover new ways to educate youth on difficult topics
-Increase LGBTQ* inclusion within schools, including supporting schools in creating GSAs.
We've already had an incredibly successful year of growth, allyship, and empathy-building.
We ask you to support us in creating our next one!
You are all invited to our Poetry Fundraiser!
Come to our event stacked with an amazing list of spoken word poets. There will be hors d'oeuvres, wine, an art exhibit & auction!
You won't wanna miss it.
Speak OUT Loud! is being spearheaded by a member of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation network and has been awarded a matching grant. Schusterman is a global organization that seeks to ignite the passion and unleash the power in young people to create positive change for themselves, the Jewish community and the broader world. Learn more about the Foundation here.
Risks and challenges
We will only be able to run as many workshops as we are able to raise the funds for ($300/workshop). PDSB schools have already shown great interest in having us return to speak to their students, and new schools have requested for us to come for the first time. We intend to distribute the indicated rewards on time to anyone who is kind enough to pledge to us. We will do everything we can to bring our programming to as many students as possible!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (31 days)