Youth Programs & Mentorship - Nia Centre for the Arts

Youth Programs & Mentorship

Since 2009, Nia Centre has provided Black youth with the opportunity to explore a wide range of creative pathways, expand their artistic abilities and build supportive connections with their peers and professional artists. Our youth programming offers a wide range intensive learning opportunities, fun artistic workshops and arts-based camps. All our programming is rooted in Creative Connect: our longstanding youth mentorship program that puts creative youth on the pathway to developing themselves as artists.

Visit our FAQ page to learn more about our youth programs.

Current Programs

Creative Connect Mentorship Program

Creative Connect is our youth mentorship program that connects young creatives and youth between the ages of 14-29 in with career professionals and artists across disciplines, to help guide them as they build their knowledge, navigate their creative goals and hone in talents across the arts.

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Kuumba After School Program

Our Kuumba After School program provides youth between the ages of 12-18 the opportunity to develop their leadership skills, learn and experiment with different art disciplines weekly after school.

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Wellness Connect

Our Wellness Connect program provides youth between the ages of 16-29 a safe space to explore topics surrounding mental health and self-care through an artistic lens and gain supports and resources as they navigate their wellness journey.

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Beyond the Books Program

Our Beyond the Books program provides you the opportunity to bring Black history, traditions and art into your classrooms. Through a wide range of art-based workshops, our program allows student to engage in artistic experiences while building their knowledge of historic and current contributions of Black Canadians and Black artists.

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Black by Design

Black by Design is a 2-year program rooted in skills building and mentorship for aspiring interior designers. With unique streams for both high school and post-secondary students, this program will help put young people on the path to a career in interior design. ⁠

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Past Programs

Black Pen: Creative Writing Program

Black Pen was a 4- month intensive creative writing program for emerging Black writers between the ages of 16-29. Participants deeply and authentically explored their passions and skill for writing, and receive the opportunity to get published.

This program was facilitated by Whitney French.

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Art of Facilitation

Our Art of Facilitation program provided trained youth between the ages of 13-29 in areas of facilitation, workshop planning and leadership through a series of skill based workshops, training modules and lectures led by Community Leaders and Art Educators.

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Artists for Recreating Opportunities (A.F.R.O)

A.F.R.O was our youth-led steering committee that worked to unify and enrich the artistic and cultural experiences within the Afro-Diasporic community through educational art-based programs and professional development opportunities.

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Film & Video Intensive Camps

In collaboration with Black Women Film!, we launched a two-week filmmaking intensive camp that provided Black women and non-binary youth the opportunity to build their skills, techniques and learn alongside film industry professionals to create a short film.

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The Way She Looks: Youth Showcase

Artists: Chanel Carter, Idil Dhafer, Kourtney Jackson, Fabio Tavares Manuel, Hermmela Tafesse, Warda Youssouf

November 20th, 2019 | Ryerson Image Centre, 33 Gould St.

The Way She Looks: Youth Showcase was presentation of portrait photography developed in response to the, The Way She Looks: A History of Femal Gazes in African Portraiture exhibition.

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Film Photography Programs

In Partnership with Gallery 44

Our annual film photography intensive programs in collaboration with Gallery 44 (G44), allowed youth to explore their photographic interested through a series of workshops, gain hands-on experience working in the darkroom studio and work alongside career professionals to produce their own photographic project.

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Lunch N’ Learn Series

A monthly series of informal talk-back sessions that allowed Black emerging artists the opportunity to connect with career-level artists and learn about their artistic journey and professional pathway over lunch.

Camp Kuumba

Camp Kuumba was our FREE youth March Break program that provided youth the opportunity to explore new art forms, engage in artistic experiences and connect with creatives across the city over March break.

Upcoming Events

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