CANMORE – Inflation is making things much more expensive for families and often it can be difficult to ensure the artistic talents of youth are fostered.
The affordable arts program, started by Janell Toews, will help give youth in Canmore the opportunity to flex their artistic muscles.
“I started the affordable arts program by looking at inflation and how it was impacting the population and how for activities, things got tight for families,” Toews said. “I wanted to give families the opportunity for their children to do activities in the fine arts realm in an easy and affordable way.”
Sessions are held every Tuesday. Drawing sessions run from 5 to 6 p.m., while guitar sessions run from 6 to 7 p.m. Drama sessions are conducted from 7 to 8 p.m. The program, which began Feb. 28, runs for five weeks. All sessions are held at Our Lady of the Snows Catholic Academy.
The art class will focus on an introduction to drawing and the guitar class is an introduction to playing the guitar. The drama class is an introduction to dramatic improvisation.
“If families are just hearing about this now, they can still come and register and come for the second sessions,” Toews said. “That is absolutely OK.”
Toews has seen that families both in the Bow Valley and elsewhere often have to choose between sports and arts for their children.
“We have tons of sporting activities in our valley but when it comes to fine arts, it is not as easy to get something for every child,” Toews said.
She added that her sister in Ontario was forced to choose between having her children go skating or take piano lessons.
“Most people will tend to get kids in the activities and then fine arts don’t always get covered.”
Toews says that spending time in arts fosters creativity and builds confidence in children, which they can use later in life.
“Post-COVID we have noticed an increase in the anxiety of students which is fair with how the world was turned upside down,” Toews said. “A lot of these fine arts are a way for kids to have an outlet to express themselves, express their feelings and be able to help them cope in future situations with the skills like self-confidence.”
For more information or to register, visit: forms.gle/UKnsBZW3xmgviniu9 or e-mail [email protected]