The Sitka Story Lab is a place where young Sitkan writers ages 7-19 can tell their stories, practice their writing skills, and unleash their imaginations. Our programs are free of charge and open to everyone. We believe that storytelling is an essential art form. It builds confidence, sharpens skills, and strengthens interpersonal connections. We work to empower youth to be innovative thinkers, and to express themselves with clarity, purpose, and imagination. Ultimately, Story Lab students will be better equipped to help their communities creatively adapt to change and thrive in turbulent times—our definition of "resilience."
To accomplish these goals, we sponsor after school sessions, weekend and evening workshops, and special weeklong sessions. We also work in close partnership with schools in Sitka, supporting teachers who want to expand writing and enrichment opportunities for their students. Our programs are run by Island Institute staffers and supported by volunteer writers, artists, storytellers, teachers, dreamers, thinkers, and doers in the Sitka area. We also benefit from the expertise of established and emerging artists who pass through the Island Institute’s various residency programs each year. Eventually, we hope that no student will be able to pass through the schools in Sitka without interacting with our Story Lab.