Best Slam Poets - 2003
On the front lines of the nationwide spoken-word phenomenon is Youth Speaks, the premier program for teen poetry in the country. Founded in 1996, the organization encourages Bay Area kids to write and perform, running a variety of classroom and after-school workshops to help teenagers represent their lives as they see and experience them. Since its inception, Youth Speaks has produced award-winning poets and transformed some of its participants into community leaders. The artists frequently showcase their newly honed skills at events like the monthly "Second Sundays" performances and the annual, national Teen Poetry Slam (which Youth Speaks started).