Youth art show aiming to tackle racism in rural communities

‘We want to see what the youth has to say about our community’

A new art show is presenting youth in the South Cariboo a chance to express their views on racism, culture and the community.

The Raven Youth Activity Centre will be opening its doors to the community to observe the art on Feb. 28 from 6 to 8 p.m.

A variety of different young artists in the community will be contributing work for the show.

“We want to see what the youth has to say about our community, what they are experiencing that we as adults might not see ourselves or understand,” said Emma Cockram, a youth support worker. “I think art is a good way of doing that and a way to communicate things without having to do it one-on-one.”

The province has allocated funding to 76 communities throughout B.C. to promote multiculturalism and stand up to racism through the Province’s Multiculturalism Grant Program.

“When we applied for the funding, we were looking for something with art and culture in the community as well as racism,” said Cockram. “It’s a big and broad topic but we are being open with it, for the youth.”

The show is a way of trying to combat stereotypes, stigmas and overall racism.

“The youth have been very good at asking questions of what fits into the theme or not. We are hoping to have a good amount of artwork to showcase.”

The Raven Youth Activity Centre offers teens in the South Cariboo a safe space to hang out after school. Youth aged 10 to 12 can visit the centre on Tuesday and Wednesday. Youth aged 12 to 18 can visit the centre on Thursday and Friday.

“The kids get along really well and it’s great to see them interacting with one another.”

The event will include snacks and refreshments along with some guest speakers.

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