Work Readiness Arts Program grant


The Work Readiness Arts Program is not open in 2023.

The Seattle Office of Arts & Culture, in collaboration with the Seattle Youth Violence Prevention Initiative (SYVPI), funded arts, cultural and community organizations providing programming that linked arts learning and work experiences for Seattle youth ages 12 to 18 years old.


Manage your award

Getting the word out

Want to get the word out about your arts or cultural event or exhibit? Here are some tips on sending out information to the public and local media.

Step 1. Gather all the details: who, what, where, when, and why.

Step 2. Gather graphics for publicity. Gather photos, create a logo if necessary, work with a designer on the look and any printed materials.

Step 3. Write a press release and/or prepare a press kit and send it to the media.

Social Media

  1. Like us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram. Also, be sure you’re signed up for our email newsletter.
  2. Post about your grant/event/program, and tag us! On Twitter, tag us by typing “@SeattleArts”. On Instagram, tag us by typing “@SeaOfficeofArts”. When you tag us, we get notified and can respond. On your Facebook post, type in “@Seattle Office of Arts & Culture”, and select our office’s page from the drop-down menu.
  3. The sooner you tell your Project Manager about your event, the more likely we’ll be able to fit it into our social media calendar. We have a lot of news and events, and schedule posts and activities weeks out.
  4. If you have promo materials, please remember to send anything you have produced (press releases, postcards, brochures, etc.) to your Project Manager. These items should include the Office of Arts & Culture name and/or logo. We rebranded our Office in 2013, so if you’ve been funded before, please make sure to update our logo.

We recommend circulating these items at least two weeks prior to your event to increase awareness and attendance.

The Press Release

Press releases inform the media about your event and can inspire the media to publish a calendar listing or even cover the event. Click here for a description and example of the anatomy of a press release.

  • Try to let the media know what makes your event unique or relevant.
  • Be genuine. Exaggeration or inaccuracy will only hurt your chances of being a reliable media source. The more a press release reads like an actual news article, the better. Many smaller publications love releases they can print verbatim.
  • Press releases should look professional and be easy to read. Type double-spaced.
  • Make sure the organization's name, address, website, and contact information are visible.
  • Include the media contact's name, direct phone line, and e-mail address near the top of the first page.
  • Include a "pull date" (the last date of the event) near the top of the first page.
  • Include a headline that summarizes the event and invites people to read the details.
  • All the most pertinent information should be included in the first paragraph - the five W's. Who is presenting what, where, and when? Why should people attend? Include information on how people can attend or buy tickets, locations of ticket venues or website, e-mail, and/or box office phone-line information.
  • Additional paragraphs can provide more descriptive information about the event, artists involved, and quotes.
  • Use your mission statement or general description of the organization at the end of the press release.
  • If the press release is longer than one page, write "-More-" at the bottom of each page. At the end of the last page, include "# # #" to indicate the end of the release.

The Press Kit

Press kits provide useful background information for members of the press writing previews or reviews of your arts or cultural event. A press kit should be organized in a folder and generally includes:

1) Organization Information (front to back on the left side of the folder)

  • Mission statement
  • Brief organizational history
  • Organizational brochure
  • Feature articles on the organization or lead staff
  • Board list
  • Business card for media contact

2) Specific Event Information (front to back on the right side of the folder)

  • Press release for the event
  • Photos or artwork related to the event
  • Event postcard or flyer
  • Event program
  • Artists' bios, if not in the program
  • Preview articles about the event

Note: Do not include reviews of the event or previous events in the press packet. Most reviewers do not want to be influenced by the opinions of others.

Online calendars

There are numerous websites with online events calendars to use to publicize your event. Here are a few:

Daily and Weekly Papers

Send your press releases to local newspapers. Here are some of the dailies and weekly papers to begin with.

Neighborhood Newspapers


Most radio stations accept a written public service announcement (PSA). Some will take a pre-recorded PSA. Check the website of the radio station you think best matches your audience. Many stations belong to the Puget Sound Broadcasters Association or Washington State Association of Broadcasters. Both organizations list links to their members.


Seattle Channel, the city's municipal television channel, is committed to covering local arts and culture. Art Zone with Nancy Guppy on the Seattle Channel specifically covers the local art scene.

Local television stations are:

Funded Partners

2016 Work Readiness Arts Program Partners

El Centro de la Raza | Youth Voices
Youth Voices is a visual art and work-readiness program designed to empower youth to speak their minds and express themselves in positive ways through art while developing skills to support their careers in art and other fields.
Faces of Expression | Faces of Expression
An 8-week program that will foster creativity, self-confidence, and work-readiness skills of SYVPI youth through exposure to a variety of art disciplines, cultural venues, and international restaurants.
A Personal Point of View | The 5 elements of Hip Hop
This project will take a look at the culture of Hip Hop and the five elements that form its being. The youth will explore the culture through the 5 elements: 1.) The MC 2.) Fashion 3.) The DJ 4.) The BBoY 5.) The Art of Graffiti.
Reel Grrls | Call the Shots Workshop Series
This hands-on video production workshop provides youth participants with creative storytelling opportunity-building skills and focuses on intensive workshops and 1-on-1 sessions with mentors, including professional filmmakers and teaching artists.
School of Acrobatics & New Circus Arts | Roda Program
The Roda program explores circus arts and emphasizes performance and creation. Focusing on developing physical literacy and ensemble through circus skills, participating youth will ultimately develop a youth-led, culminating performance.
Unified Outreach | Event Management with a Focus on Fashion & Runway
Youth will work in teams to plan, design, and deliver a Fashion & Runway program. Teams consist of Facilities/Stage Set-Up/Sound & Lighting, Promotions/PR/Marketing, Photo & Video Production, and Stage Management/Models/Runway.
YMCA of Greater Seattle | Central Puget SoundOff: Through the Lens
The YMCA will provide job readiness skills to youth through teaching digital media production. The project will teach youth digital photography skills, encourage them to connect with a cause, and support their engagement through

2015 Work Readiness Arts Program Partners

Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association | Youngstown Pop-Up!
Two teaching artists will mentor eight youth to plan, promote, and produce a community cultural arts pop-up, including live performances, art gallery, and dinner. Youth will gain skills in art and music production, community organizing, and culinary arts.
El Centro de la Raza | Youth Voices
Youth will develop artistic and professional job skills by learning to draw, sketch, and paint with mixed media, creating individual pieces and a group mural, assembling portfolios, and organizing an art show to display their work.
Hollow Earth Radio | rad-ionYxs - A youth radio work program
A program that walks youth through the process of designing their own radio show. This program gives youth the power to create their own media based on their lived experiences while gaining skills in production, technology, and media literacy.
Na'ah Illahee Fund | Gen7: Native Youth Art, Culture & Technology Summer 2015 WRAP: Building Strong Youth Through the Arts
Youth will engage with Native American teaching artists in a four-week summer internship to build their creative writing, videography & culinary arts; and 21st-century skills.
Reel Grrls | Reel Grrls Video Production Workshop
Youth will participate in a six-week after-school workshop where teen girls will learn to critique media, use technology, and work collaboratively in small groups to create a final finished short video.
Sawhorse Revolution | Youth Construction Company
Youth will take on the responsibilities of an independent contracting company in the process of creating a beautiful, moveable home for the Nickelsville community. Sawhorse will lead the process with two professionals and artists/makers.
Seattle Art Museum | Design Your Hood Teen Art Workshop
DYH focuses on art and design as tools for youth development and community change by equipping and empowering young people to become active and engaged citizens capable of making a positive difference in their community and in their own lives.
Seattle Aquarium | Art and Conservation: Teen Voices
During this six-week project, youth participants will partner with teaching artists to explore artistic mediums including poetry, screen printing, and graphic design, and plan a community forum about environmental issues of concern to their communities.
YMCA of Greater Seattle | YTech Community Voices
The project will provide employment readiness skills to young people through teaching basic media production and encourage youth to connect with a cause. The project will culminate in publication on the online youth voice forum,

2014 Work Readiness Arts Program Partners

Boys & Girls Clubs of King County | Music Makers
Youth will gain creative music and beat-making skills, as well as 21st-century employment skills and event planning experience through making music.
Delridge Neighborhoods Development Association | Delridge Mural Project
Youth will work with professional teaching artists to develop, design, and paint murals on two walls at the Youngstown Cultural Arts Center. Murals will reflect the history of the area, and further establish an artistic identity for Delridge.
El Centro de la Raza | Nicho Art Project
Youth will acquire professional and academic skills by creating and presenting Nichos celebrating people who have died or have influenced their lives.*
Hendrix Music Academy | Summer Intensive Music Academy for Teens
A multi-discipline, 8-week intensive music program that teaches youth how to collaborate, write, record, and perform music.
Light for Life New Church | Paul Robeson Performing Arts Program
Youth will write and perform an original play at Rainier Beach High School. Students will be involved in every aspect of the production.
LK Media | News Reporting 101: Tell Me A Story
This media literacy project will teach youth about news and telling stories. Students will hone reasoning, presentation, and thinking skills as they conduct interviews, write and produce news reports.
Rubicon Foundation | Micro-Housing for the Homeless Community
A group of students, led by one professional builder, one designer, and one program director, will create a customized, portable home in consultation with residents of a Nickelsville community in Seattle's Central Area.
Gen7: Native Youth Culture, Arts & Technology | Na'ah Illahee Fund
Native students will learn traditional and contemporary arts while building character and workforce readiness skills. Engaging experienced teachers and mentors, Gen7 is a way for Native teens to reflect on and begin to develop paths to healthy adulthood.
Unified Outreach | The Unified Outreach Complete Training Program
Youth will produce an industry-level fashion show by taking on roles of artists and arts administrators, by participating in behind-the-scenes preparation work such as set design, graphics, web, video, music, sound, and lighting.
Urban Youth Chess/Anti-Violence Project | Urban Youth Chess \ Anti-Violence Project
A coalition of activists, leaders, former gang members, and Seattle Police Officers will work together on a comprehensive training on role-playing, acting, journaling, and poetry with Southeast Seattle youth.
YMCA of Greater Seattle | Youth Media, Youth Voice, Youth Employment
The YMCA will provide employment readiness skills to young people through teaching basic media production. The project will encourage youth to connect with a cause and will culminate in publication on the online youth voice forum

* This project was supported with funds through the Mayor's 2014 Summer of Safety Initiative. Youth served through this program were not enrolled in SYVPI

2013 Work Readiness Arts Program Partners

Unified Outreach
Youth will take on roles of artists and arts administrators needed to produce an industry-level fashion show. Participants will learn set design, graphics, web, video, music, sound/lighting, and more.
Youngstown Cultural Arts Center
Youth will work with professional teaching artists to develop, design, and create murals on 12 SDOT signal boxes at intersections along Delridge Way SW.
Multimedia Resources and Training Institute
Youth will create a video history of the Seattle Seahawks using creative writing for a sports broadcasting script, sketching, multimedia camera equipment, editing software, and library research technology. The project will also include field trips to the Seahawks training camp, and RadioActive KUOW 94.9.
Rainier Beach Community Empowerment Coalition
This training program will engage a team of local youth in exploring the art of storytelling through various media and modes of expression as a channel for both personal and community growth.
Urban Impact
Youth will learn and practice photography, dance, graphic design, and music production, incorporating elements of each into two events. Youth will practice marketing, advertising, and event planning as they showcase their art projects.
Sawhorse Revolution
8 youth will learn aesthetic elements of design and develop carpentry and woodworking skills while constructing a garden shelter for the community P-Patch. All workshops will be taught and supported by experienced carpentry instructors and mentors.
Seattle Art Museum
Design Your (neighbor)Hood is an intensive multisession workshop focused on art, urban design, and community change. Teens will learn from and work with design professionals to create their own projects for public presentations.
The Center for Wooden Boats
Students in this project will craft a traditional wooden boat. They will develop technical proficiency in woodworking, wood refinishing, group management and leadership, on-the-water skills, and employment skills training.
Totem Star
Youth will participate in a music business work-readiness program. Youth will record original music and produce a live performance while learning about music marketing and promotion.

Arts & Culture

Gülgün Kayim, Director
Address: 303 S. Jackson Street, Top Floor, Seattle, WA , 98104
Mailing Address: PO Box 94748, Seattle, WA , 98124-4748
Phone: (206) 684-7171
Fax: (206) 684-7172

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The Office of Arts & Culture promotes the value of arts and culture in, and of, communities throughout Seattle. It strives to ensure that a wide range of high-quality artistic experiences are available to everyone, encourage artist-friendly arts and cultural policy.