Slam and spoken word poet Aziza Moqia Sealey-Qaylow (left) is the current Youth Poet Laureate and her term ends in December 2019. The Victoria Poet Laureate John Barton (right) mentors the youth poets during their term. (Photo courtesy the City of Victoria)

Slam and spoken word poet Aziza Moqia Sealey-Qaylow (left) is the current Youth Poet Laureate and her term ends in December 2019. The Victoria Poet Laureate John Barton (right) mentors the youth poets during their term. (Photo courtesy the City of Victoria)

City of Victoria seeks next Youth Poet Laureate

Nominations for the 2020 position close Oct. 29

The City of Victoria, in partnership with the Greater Victoria Public Library (GVPL), has put out a call for nominations for the 2020 Youth Poet Laureate position.

The position was created by the Victoria Youth Council in 2013 for poets between the ages of 14 and 24 living in the Capital Region. Victoria was the first city on Canada to create a Youth Poet Laureate position. It is an honourary position held by the candidate for one year – Jan. 1 to Dec. 31.

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The Youth Poet Laureate brings the work of young poets to the community by reaching out to vulnerable youth populations and creating opportunities for them to learn from each other by organizing a youth poetry event. The position comes with a $1,750 honorarium and $2,000 in funding for the event project. The Youth Poet Laureate also receives support from the GVPL and mentorship from the Victoria Poet Laureate – currently John Barton.

Nominations can come from outside sources or from the applicants themselves. To apply, the jury needs to see three original poems – these can be presented in any form including written and video – a letter of intent explaining their plans if they were awarded the position and a resume highlighting community engagement experience.

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The deadline for applications is Oct. 29 at 4 p.m. and the Victoria city council will announce the 2020 Youth Poet Laureate at a council meeting in January.

For more information, visit the City of Victoria website or contact culture@victoria.ca.


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