This collaborative funding program is the only one of its kind in Canada investing in creative arts initiatives developed by and for youth living in vulnerable communities.
The creation of ArtReach Toronto was driven by the fact that a growing number of youth have little access to cultural programs or means of creatively and positively expressing themselves. ArtReach is designed to support arts initiatives that engage youth from under-served neighbourhoods who often struggle to access funding for their arts projects.
The Toronto Community Foundation collaborated with other foundations and government funders to create this innovative program in 2005. ArtReach gives youth a high level of support that goes beyond the grant to empower youth by placing ownership of arts and culture projects in their hands. In addition to providing grants, ArtReach’s powerful workshop series for youth gives them the tools they need to become successful artists and future not-for-profit leaders. These free training workshops cover topics such as governance, financial management, evaluation and community-based research.
- Over $1 million has been invested in youth-led arts organizations and projects across Toronto over three years
- Since August 2006, nearly 2,000 youth from vulnerable neighbourhoods have been reached through 49 funded projects, for which over 250 young people were leaders
- More than 450 youth leaders in Toronto attended 18 workshops in the Youth Capacity Building Workshop series between 2007 and 2008