YACOS [Youth Arts]


WRITE ON! Workshop A Success

Melanie Minty

Our second annual Write On Workshop happened on the last week in January. We had a wonderful slate of speakers from the literary community, sharing their knowledge and experience for several young writers. We’d like to take this opportunity to express our appreciation to Melanie Minty, Janet Dhanani, Barbie Warwick, Hannah Christensen and Ellie King for presenting at this free event for local youth!

YACOS Day Trip to the Audain Art Museum in Whistler

YACOS co-ordinator, Lyn Verra-Lay organized a day trip to Whistler to visit the Audain Art Museum and the Maury Young Arts Centre on January 5.

The 16 passenger bus drove an hour and forty minutes along the Sea-to-Sky Highway and dropped us off first at the Audain. This two-year-old building is beautifully situated just below the Blackcomb and Whistler Mountains, the architecture quietly blends in with the surrounding geography. We were greeted by Education and Volunteer Manager, Laura Minta Holland (a former work collegue of mine) and she told us that the Audain has a permanent collection that showcases the art of British Columbia from the late 18th century to the present. The current exhibition, Stone and Sky: Canada’s Mountain Landscape, includes a couple of pieces by Edward Burtynsky from the Surrey Arts Gallery’s permanent collection.

Our next stop was the Maury Young Arts Centre. This venue is the hub for everything arts and culture in Whistler. The Arts Centre hosts a community gallery, local artisan wares, a 238 seat performance theatre, and multi-purpose rooms for workshops and rehearsals. We visited the gallery’s exhibit, The Great White North and browsed through the Sea-to-Sky corridor artisan works in the gift shop area.

We’re looking forward to organizing another trip to see the spring exhibitions in Whistler!


Opportunities such as continuing auditions or Calls To Artist that have no deadline.


We are the Youth Arts Council of Surrey (YACOS)! We are a volunteer arts group run by youth for youth, and it’s our goal to create opportunities for young people in the arts. We provide these opportunities throughout the year through large-scale events such as talents shows, play-writing competitions, film festivals and fashion shows.

All of our members and participants are 13-21 years old, and either live or go to school in school in Surrey, BC. The Arts Council of Surrey (ACS) is our parent organization who provides us with a safe meeting space at the Newton Cultural Centre. The ACS provides us with a mentorship program and services to support our artistic endeavours.

We work on many annual projects such as a playwriting competition [Write On!], City-wide talent show [Surrey Shines!] a talent showcase [Canvas Coffee House], and a fashion show [Y.E.S. Runway]

By working on the youth council, we have the chance to discover who we are, to meet people from other backgrounds and to learn exciting new skills. At the same time, the events we organize are the perfect opportunities for Surrey youth to show off their talents to the community.

YACOS is currently working to provide opportunities for young people to become actively involved in the local Surrey Arts community. Our Youth Coordinator, an experienced Mentor from the Arts community, works with us to develop programs by and for youth. In 2004 the major community theatre project “Let Me Sing” raised enough money to help get us started.

The way we work is: Surrey’s youth provide the ideas and proposals, and then we get together with mentors in the community to make it all work.



Amrit, Chair
Shubi, Vice Chair

MEMBERS: Wendy, Himadri, Fareed, Bakhtiar, Min Jy, Linda, Gurmehak, Tina, Pam, Simmie and Maro

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We welcome all questions you may have about the many benefits of becoming a YACOS member. Please call us at 604-594-2700 or email us at youthartscouncil@gmail.com.

Please fill out form and send to:
By Email: youthartscouncil@gmail.com
By Mail: 13530 72nd Avenue, Surrey, BC, V3W 2P1

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/youth arts council of surrey


When the Arts Council of Surrey established YACOS they knew that ‘experience is a great teacher’ when it comes to the Arts and the business of the Arts. To this end, the ACS set up a Mentorship program that young artists can tap into when creating work or producing events and fund raisers. Today YACOS enjoys an incredible synergy with a number of leaders in the business, municipal and arts communities.

Lyn Vera-Lay

Petra Barker [Guildford Town Centre]
Beth Barlow [Chief Librarian, City of Surrey]
Catherine Bayley [School District #36]
Glen Chua and Tim Reyes [MOONLiTE Productions]
KC Gilroy [Former Coordinator]
Barb Gould [Writer]
Jarnail Singh [Artist]
Chris Thornley [Thornley Hayne Creative Communications]
Barb Wolfe [Surrey Arts Centre]

Paula Cooper,Kiran Dhillon, Trisha Dulku, Jaspreet Kalsi, Gurinder Kalsi, Winnie Liu, Lynn Vo, Isuru Withanage, Tina Yang and Tony Yang