BYRON Writers Festival has launched its StoryBoard Bus, a travelling creative writing program bringing authors and illustrators into schools across the Northern Rivers region of NSW.
The Bus, with graphics was created by Victorian artist and animator Justine Wallace was unveiled at Byron Bay Public School by special guest, Leigh Hobbs, Australia's 2017 Children's Laureate.
Byron Writers Festival board member Jesse Blackadder said the bus was a mobile creative writing hub that includes a pop-up classroom and library full of creative ideas and surprises to ignite the imagination of everyone who sees it.
"Its about putting kids in a space where they are encouraged and nurtured to create, to write , to imagine without being assessed,” Ms Blackadder.
"There is incredible freedom around it- its about stretching kids brains and teaching functional literacy. These are not just fun skills they are skills that kids need for the future .
Writers Festival director Edwina Johnson said, "The launch of the bus means we can expand our reach further into the Northern Rivers, with tours planned for later in 2017 to schools in Yamba, Maclean, Grafton, Kempsey, Port Macquarie, Casino, Tabulum, Bonalbo and Urbenville.
"We are immensely grateful to Create NSW and the Australian government's Stronger Communities program for funding the bus and to the Catalyst program which supports the ongoing delivery of StoryBoard,” she said.
StoryBoard will run more than 100 free school visits and master classes each year for the next three years, with authors including Tristan Bancks, Samantha Turnbull, Lucas Proudfoot, Zanni Louise, Sarah Armstrong, Oliver Phommavanh, Jesse Blackadder and others still to be announced.
Any Northern Rivers schools interested in a free visit from StoryBoard should contact Coralie Tapper on 66855115 or on email coralie@byron writersfestival.com.
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