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Sci-fi writing program helps queer youth of color

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A group of queer youth of color is putting its imagination into words at an inaugural science fiction and fantasy workshop in Oakland.Earlier this year, Chapter 510.

launched a first-of-its-kind science fiction and fantasy workshop for LGBTQ sixth and seventh graders called New Origins.Jahan Khalighi, director of programs at Chapter 510, told the Bay Area Reporter that the organization developed New Origins to create more space for Black and Brown queer middle school-aged youth to connect with each other.The organization created a space where youth "can utilize their imagination" to connect, build community, and gain confidence and joy "in their capacity to imagine themselves into the future and also write the stories that feel most compelling to them," he said.The creative writing and bookmaking organization based in Oakland has a budget of $850,000.

It focuses on raising young people of color's voices and stories. Queer youth are a part of the community, said Khalighi.The organization is also celebrating the grand opening of its new Writing Center on Write Your Roots Day, April 29.Khalighi, a 41-year-old ally, pointed to the importance of the New Origin's workshop, pointing to Black science fiction legends, such as Octavia E.

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