Youth writing camp starts new chapter online this summer
EDMONTON -- A camp devoted to teaching different aspects of writing to youth in Alberta is getting creative during the pandemic.
YouthWrite is a camp for kids aged eight to 19, and calls itself, "a safe place to take artistic and creative risks in a supportive atmosphere."
"All of the arts are used as a springboard to creative writing; anything you can imagine we can give a course in it," said Gail Sidonie Sobat from YouthWrite.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions YouthWrite is writing a new chapter in its story. After 24 years of offering an in-person experience, they've launched with a new format online.
"It's called YouthWrite ZOOMS OnLine, and it is exactly that we're going to take as much as the physical camp experience as we can and mirror it online," said Sidonie Sobat.
This year will feature online sessions with authors, and songwriters and improvisers with breaks for the kids to go outside for inspiration.
"We build in offline activities that will keep kids away from the screen, as well as invite them to explore their neighbourhoods, their backyards and stay socially distanced from one another, yet engage in community building and team building activities," said Sidonie Sobat.
There will be more challenges for campers than just coming up with exciting endings for stories.
"They have to do challenges, they have to go on quests, they have to find talismans, we've got all kinds of incentivized prizes."
The goal of YouthWrite this year is to zoom participants into the same experience they've been offering up for over two decades.
"We've got welcome packages that have got things for our virtual campfire like hot chocolate, and microwave popcorn for our instructor talent show night, so we have stopped at nothing to make this innovative and delightful."
YouthWrite runs from July 6 to 10.
With files from CTV News Edmonton's Graham Neil