Telling Stories

Location:  San Diego, CA
Project Description: 

Telling Stories creates theatre from the life experiences of youth in the foster care system. Playwright Project developed the program in partnership with the LEAP (Leadership Empowers All Possibilities) Board of the San Diego Foster Youth Initiative, a group of young adults involved in advocating for changes to the system. The LEAP Board named the program after a sentiment frequently expressed by foster youth: “We go through many trials and tribulations and when we talk about what has happened to us, the response is ‘You’re lying. That didn’t happen. You’re telling stories.’” Playwright Project’s theatre artists work with foster youth during group sessions and one-on-one interviews to shape their stories into short plays, which are then performed by professional actors. The youth and young adults examine the challenges they’ve faced, celebrate the positive choices and personal strength that have helped them persevere, and communicate their stories to encourage community involvement in improving the child welfare system. Organizations associated with this project include: Playwrights Project and the San Diego Foster Youth Initiative.