Jer’s Vision National Conferences Manager, Faye Estrella, known as Lukayo or Festrell, had the pleasure of delivering a workshop on creating more inclusive spaces for spoken word artists to the youth participants assembled in Ottawa for the 2013 YouthCanSlam, Canada’s Inaugural National Youth Spoken Word Festival. Youth from Halifax, Hamilton, Ottawa, Saskatoon, Toronto, and Vancouver have come in 6 official teams and 1 Wild Card Teams to compete in bouts and learn in workshops, as well as take in work from veteran poets of the Canadian scene.
The Safe Space Workshop itself focused on what it means to be responsible to their community as an audience and to fellow artists as well, that it isn’t enough to just recognize the diversity in the community, but to celebrate and value it. Lukayo themselves is a veteran of the Ottawa and National Spoken Word scene, representing Ottawa in 2006 and the Captain of the Wild Card Team in 2010. They also were one of the coaches for the 2011 Ottawa Youth Team.