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Encyclopedia > Young storytellers program
JJ Abrams

Writer, Producer
Paul Cummins
President, New Visions Foundation
Gary Knell
CEO, Sesame Workshop
Norman Lear
Writer, Producer, Activist
Film Director, Producer
Ryan Murphy
Writer, Producer, Director
Peter Schlessel
Jeffrey J. Abrams (usually credited as Jeffrey Abrams or J.J. Abrams) (born June 27, 1966) is an American film and television producer, writer, actor, composer and director. ... Sesame Workshop, formerly known as the Childrens Television Workshop (or CTW), is a non-profit organization behind the production of several educational childrens programs that have run on public broadcasting around the world (including PBS in the United States), as well as Noggin. ... Norman Lear (born July 27, 1922) is a Jewish-American television writer and producer who produced such popular sitcoms as All in the Family, Sanford and Son, One Day at a Time, Good Times and Maude. ... Mcg could refer to: Microgram (mcg or µg) Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) McG (Joseph McGinty Nichol) Muslim Consumer Group (MCG) Micronized Coffee Grounds (MCG) Magnetocardiography (MCG) This is a disambiguation page: a list of articles associated with the same title. ... Ryan Murphy is the creator of the hit FX television series Nip/Tuck, about two Miami plastic surgeons, played by Dylan Walsh and Julian McMahon. ...

Producer/Film Consultant
Pamela Colburn, Chairman,

Executive Director
Partner, Europlay Capital Advisors

Mikkel Bondesen, Vice Chair
Fuse Entertainment
Chris Adams
Participant Productions
Scott Alderton
Partner, Stubbs, Alderton, Markiles
Andrew Barrett
Brad Falchuk
Writer, Nip/Tuck
Jay Gibson
Rob Mandel
The Management Group
Jamie Tarses
Richard Weitz
Participant Productions is a relatively new movie studio, whose initial movies have gained critical acclaim, and major film awards. ... Nip/Tuck is an American drama television series created by Ryan Murphy for FX Networks. ...

The Endeavor Agency

The Young Storytellers Foundation (YSF) is dedicated to developing literacy, self-expression and self-esteem in elementary school children. The Young Storytellers Program currently serves elementary school students in Southern California, including the cities of Los Angeles, Culver City, Santa Monica, and Glendale. YSF targets Title 1 schools; these are schools and school districts with the highest concentrations of poverty in which academic performance tends to be low and the obstacles to raising performance are the greatest. What was started in 1997 with ten children at one elementary school has reached over 2,000 children as of 2006. The Endeavor Agency is a Beverly Hills, California based talent and literary agency, representing actors, writers and directors for film, television and video games. ... World literacy rates by country The traditional definition of literacy is the ability to use language, i. ... In psychology, self-esteem or self-worth is a persons self-image at an emotional level; circumventing reason and logic. ... Flag Seal Nickname: City of Angels Location Location within Los Angeles County in the state of California Coordinates , Government State County California Los Angeles County Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa (D) Geographical characteristics Area     City 1,290. ... Culver City sign near the intersection of the 405 and the 90. ... Santa Monica Pier Santa Monica is a coastal city located in Los Angeles County, California USA, by the Pacific Ocean, south of Pacific Palisades and Brentwood, west of Westwood, Los Angeles, and north of Venice. ... County Los Angeles County, California Area  - Total  - Water 79. ...



Young Storytellers was founded in 1997 in Los Angeles by three screenwriters at the American Film Institute; Mikkel Bondesen, Brad Falchuk, and Andrew Barrett. Screenwriters, or script writers, are authors who write the screenplays from which movies are made. ... The American Film Institute (AFI) is an independent non-profit organization created by the National Endowment for the Arts, which was established in 1967 when President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act. ...

Upon learning about cutbacks in funding for creative arts programs in the Los Angeles public schools, Bondesen enlisted the help of Falchuk and Barrett, and together they developed the Young Storytellers Program (YSP). These three writers developed a six-week, one hour per week curriculum. Together with seven additional writers, and school principal Sharon Langman, they offered the first Young Storytellers Program session at the Playa Del Rey School in Venice, California. The Los Angeles Unified School District ( the LAUSD) is the largest (in terms of number of students) public school system in California and the second-largest in the United States. ... Venice Beach and Boardwalk Venice, California, is a district of the city of Los Angeles, California. ...

The program was an immediate success. The original mentors recruited new volunteers, and slowly they expanded the program, adding one or two schools each semester. Despite its early successful launch in local schools around the Los Angeles area, YSP was a loose-knit, organization of friends - its growth was limited and its survival was unsure.

In order to properly raise funds and ensure the integrity, stability, success, and longevity of the Young Storytellers Program, Pamela Colburn and Jay Gibson, two long-time mentors, established The Young Storytellers Foundation as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation in 2003. A nonprofit organization (abbreviated NPO, or non-profit or not-for-profit) is an organization whose primary objective is to support some issue or matter of private interest or public concern for non-commercial purposes. ...

Mission and Objectives

The Young Storytellers Foundation offers a means of self-expression to kids at a time when most public schools have fewer and fewer opportunities for artistic and creative activities as part of the curriculum. YSF's belief is a simple one: that every child has natural storytelling ability; and that, through the expression and celebration of the talent and imagination that exists in every child, they can discover their own unique and special voice, and with it a confidence and pride that will last their entire lives. This article or section seems not to be written in the formal tone expected of an encyclopedia entry. ...

The Program

In each school that offers the program, YSF pair 10 elementary school students with 10 creative professionals – all volunteers, who, over the course of six weekly meetings, guide and encourage the students as they imagine, develop and write their own short screenplay. The philosophy is to welcome each student into the program as the talented, capable and creative artist they are - from the first moment they walk into the classroom. Each mentor serves only as a facilitator; the student is the storyteller – of every idea, plot, character, and word. By encouraging and coaching, mentors reveal the young writers inherent talent, giving them the opportunity to fully explore and express their individual creative voices. A screenplay or script is a blueprint for producing a motion picture. ... Look up Mentor in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...

At the end of the six-week session, professional actors, all volunteers, join students and mentors in staging "The Big Show," a spirited staged reading of each script for an audience of family, teachers and friends. Before each Big Show, the students meet each of the actors and each student selects the cast for their own story. After the show, the young writers take a final bow before a much-deserved standing ovation.

This final step brings the community together to celebrate each child’s creativity. The positive effect of the program on the self-esteem, social behavior, and academic life of each student is truly remarkable.

The program has also been adapted for summer camps. For a number of years, Young Storytellers mentors have volunteered to run the program at The Painted Turtle, a camp for children who are terminally or chronically ill.

The YSF scripts have been brought to life by actors including Matthew Perry (Friends), Hank Azaria (Mad About You, The Simpsons), Tate Donovan, Adam Brody, Kelly Rowan, Rachel Bilson, Ben McKenzie, and Melinda Clarke (The O.C.), Anthony LaPaglia (Without A Trace), Emily Procter (CSI: Miami), Jason Ritter (Joan of Arcadia), Jennifer Grant (Beverly Hills, 90210), Melissa Joan Hart (Sabrina, the Teenage Witch), Fred Savage (Austin Powers in Goldmember), Ron Perlman (Hellboy), Mary-Lynn Rajskub (Legally Blonde), Paget Brewster (Huff), Billy Campbell (Enough), Esai Morales (NYPD Blue), Kelli Williams (The Practice), Gia Carides (My Big Fat Greek Wedding), Constance Marie (The George Lopez Show), Judy Greer (13 Going on 30) and Cheri Oteri (Saturday Night Live); as well as cast members and voice actors for such popular kids' programs as SpongeBob Squarepants, Lizzie McGuire, and Even Stevens. To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Hank Albert Azaria (born April 25, 1964) is an Emmy Award-winning American actor and voice artist. ... Tate Donovan (born September 25, 1963) is an American actor. ... Brody on The O.C. Adam Jared Brody (born December 15, 1979) is an American actor, who stars in the television series, The O.C. // Biography Early life Brody was born in San Diego, California, the oldest son of Jewish American parents Mark Brody (a lawyer) and Valerie Siefman (a... Kelly Rowan (born 1967 in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada) is a Canadian actress well known for her twenty-five years in the industry, most recently for her role as Kirsten Cohen on The O.C. A graduate of Torontos Northern Secondary School (Class of 85), as well as a graduate... Rachel Bilson Rachel Sarah Bilson (born August 25, 1981)[1] is an American actress. ... Ben McKenizie of The O.C. Ben McKenzie (born Benjamin McKenzie Schenkkan on September 12, 1978) is an American actor. ... Melinda Clarke as Velasca, from Xena: Warrior Princess. ... Anthony LaPaglia (centre) in Without a Trace. ... Emily Procter as Ainsley Hayes. ... Jason Morgan Ritter (born February 17, 1980 in Los Angeles, California) is an American actor, son of the late actor John Ritter and grandson of actors Tex Ritter and Dorothy Fay. ... Jennifer Grant born in frackville pennsylvania is the greatest woman who ever lived!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ... Melissa Joan Hart in Sabrina, the Teenage Witch Melissa Joan Hart (born April 18, 1976) is an American actress who is best known for playing the title roles in two successful television series, Clarissa Explains It All and Sabrina, the Teenage Witch. ... Savage in The Wonder Years, 1988 Frederick Aaron Savage (born July 9, 1976) is an American actor and television director. ... Ron Perlman Ron Perlman (born Ronald Francis Perlman in April 13, 1950, in Washington Heights, New York) is an American television and film actor. ... Paget Brewster (born March 10, 1969 in Concord, Massachusetts) is an actress who appeared in the short-lived comedy series Andy Richter Controls The Universe and as of 2005 appears as Beth Huffstodt in the Showtime original series Huff. ... Billy Campbell as Thadiun Okona in the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode The Outrageous Okona. William O. Campbell (born July 7, 1959 in Charlottesville, Virginia is an actor who who is well known for his starring role in the television series Once and Again as well as his role... Esai Morales (born October 1, 1962) is an actor who has most recently starred as Lt. ... Kelli Williams (born June 8, 1970 in Los Angeles, California) is an American actress most well known for her role as Lindsay Dole Donnell on the ABC legal drama The Practice. ... Gia Carides (born June 7, 1964 in Sydney, Australia) is a Greek-Australian actress. ... Constance Marie (b. ... Image:Judy Greer. ... Cheri Oteri (born September 19th, 1965 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) is an American actress and comedian best known for her work on NBCs Saturday Night Live. ... SpongeBob SquarePants is a popular American animated television series and media franchise shown on various TV networks around the world, though its usually on Nickelodeon. ... Lizzie McGuire was a popular American childrens television series aired on the Disney Channel from 2001 to 2004. ... Even Stevens is a comedy television program which aired on the Disney Channel from 2000 to 2003. ...

Population Served

As of 2006, YSP runs in twenty schools each semester, ten kids per school for each seven week session. The Kids are 9-11 years old, mostly in 4th and 5th grades.

In the Los Angeles area schools served by YSP, the general population breaks down as follows:

  • Male: 50%
  • Female: 50%
  • African-American: 12.1%
  • Asian/Pacific: 4.2%
  • Latino: 71.9%
  • White: 9.4%
  • Other: 2.4%

Since the first session in 1997, the benefits of the Young Storytellers Program have been clear. Parents, school principals, and teachers attest to the fact that the Young Storytellers Program’s ability to offer personal attention, an unyielding belief in each child’s innate abilities, a nonjudgmental atmosphere for creativity, and a special celebration of each Young Storyteller’s achievement has a direct and substantial positive impact on each participant’s academic performance, test scores, attendance, social interaction, and self-esteem.


As of 2006, the staff of the YSF consists of a full-time Executive Director (unpaid), an Associate Director, and a Program Coordinator. The rest of our enthusiastic staff is made up of volunteers. YSF has volunteer financial and legal assistants, office staff, intern support, and a pool of over four hundred volunteer mentors.

The program is run in each school by a volunteer Head Mentor and nine volunteer Mentors – each mentor works with one child for the duration of the program. Many of our mentors are creative professionals, and all are carefully screened and trained before they enter the classroom.


YSF has received grants and donations from many philanthropic organizations including: The Endeavor Foundation, EIF, Sony Entertainment, The Skoll Foundation, Participant Foundation (a donor advised fund at the California Community Foundation), Paul Newman Foundation and the Louis Borick Family Foundation, as well as from many individual and corporate donors. EIF stands for Edinburgh International Festival European industry federation European Internet Foundation European Investment Fund External interface file This is a disambiguation page — a navigational aid which lists pages that might otherwise share the same title. ... This article or section needs additional references or sources. ... Newman in Cool Hand Luke, 1967 Paul Leonard Newman (born January 26, 1925) is an Academy Award-winning American actor and film director. ...

External links



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