Power of Hope

Summary of organization/program

The Power of Hope is a non-profit organization that delivers arts-based experiential learning programs to teens from diverse cultures and socioeconomic backgrounds.

Contact information


 #7 – 1921 Fernwood Road, Victoria, BC V8T 2Y6

 ( 250) 381-4673 / (250) 508-6897


Geographic region

  • Canada and USA


  • Youth aged 14-18

History/Background Information

  • Since: 1996
  • In the USA and Canada, we offer programs for youth and adults who want to take an active role in creating a positive future, develop their leadership skills, build stronger communities and have a great time in the process! We have been successfully creating and delivering summer camps and school-year programs since 1996. We are non-religious and our programs are open to all.
  • The Power of Hope was founded in 1996 by Charlie Murphy and Peggy Taylor out of the belief that young people — regardless of their circumstances — are an untapped resource for community renewal and social change.
  • The core belief of Power of Hope is that by acknowledging the creative potential of our youth, rather than treating them as “problems” to be solved, we may witness over and over again their remarkable transformation and inspired self-expression.We have seen youth in positions of hopelessness, anger and self-destruction transform into positions of leadership, hope and empowerment. And we have seen youth who already come from positions of self-confidence, strength and relative privilege recognize their ability to serve as allies and collaborative change-makers in society. There is a place for youth from all walks of life at Power of Hope.We are living in a time of rapid cultural change in which young people are exposed to levels of personal and societal stress unknown even a generation ago. The challenges youth may find in school, at home, and in peer groups can be a source of internal conflict and stress at a time when they need guidance and support the most. Power of Hope exists to be a community of support, empowerment and encouragement to teens at this crucial and special time in their life. Read more about what teens have said after coming to Power of Hope.

Dominant Media Forms

literary production


multi media presentations


The Power of Hope unleashes the positive potential of youth through arts-centered intergenerational and multicultural learning programs that value self-awareness, leadership, community and social change.

Power of Hope’s model is based on:

  • Expanding our creativity
  • Learning from people different from ourselves
  • Learning from nature
  • Exploring our inner life
  • Identifying ways to take action on what we care about in the world

These themes are central to the success of our week-long summer camps and emphasized in various ways in our school-year and adult training programs

Statement of Principles

not provided 


  • Summer camps, Weekend retreats, after-school workshops, school-year programs, programs that run within schools
  • The cornerstone of our youth programs is our distinctive, 8-day overnight camp during the summer. At camp, we bring youth together in a 2:1 ratio with a staff of artists, naturalists, self-care specialists, community activists and other adults working for positive change in the world.Our school-year programs offer youth ways to connect to the Power of Hope via in-school and after-school programs that offer experiential, creative and non-traditional learning opportunities.

    As a result of our programs, young people:

    • Discover and expand their creativity
    • Connect with their sense of purpose
    • Develop their leadership skills
    • Learn ways to become active in their communities
    • Speak out about issues that matter to them

    We also offer workshops and trainings for adults who want to expand their skills in using creativity in their work with youth. We teach arts-based techniques for building community, as well as providing deeper training in facilitation skills and leadership development.


Samples of work

  • Across the Lines:Learning from Difference 
  • A weekend gathering for youth on diversity, creativity and community building
  • Power of Hope’s eight-day summer camps are for teens ages 14 to 18 who want to explore the arts and take an active role in their communities. Teens learn to express themselves through a range of creative workshops on subjects such as: visual arts, dance, theater, writing, media literacy, nature education, social justice and much more!2011 Summer Program Dates & Locations
    • July 9-16: Tierra Learning Center, Leavenworth, WA
    • July 10-17: Linnaea Farm, Cortes Island, BC
    • July 22-29: Linnaea Farm, Cortes Island, BC
    • August 9-16: Camp Indianola, Indianola, WA
    • August 16-23: The Whidbey Institute, Clinton, WA (young women only)

    Approximately 40-60 youth & 25-35 staff from all over the US & Canada attend each camp. This small youth to staff ratio allows the staff to provide a safe environment where mentorship relationships can thrive.

    Power of Hope strives to bring together youth and staff from all walks of life. At every camp we strive to bring together a truly diverse group of youth and staff, aiming for the inclusion of diversity of all kinds: ethnic, cultural, religion, class, personality, life experience, and more. Spending a week in community and connection leads to powerful conversations, meaningful friendships, a deep learning.

    Camps take place in beautiful natural settings in Washington and British Columbia. Youth have many opportunities to explore the natural world through outdoor education workshops, hiking, and swimming or tubing on the river. Depending on the facilities at our various sites, youth either stay overnight in cabins or tents.

    Each of our sites has spacious and inviting facilities for group meetings and workshops. Our fabulous chefs prepare nourishing and delicious meals for everyone. Overall, teens and staff are nurtured, body and soul, throughout the week!

  • Hip Hop Hope is held as either an exciting 5-day retreat camp or an After-School drop-in program that brings together a diverse group of youth to create a Hip Hop CD that challenges and inspires.Using portable digital studios, youth record beats, songs, raps and poems, most of which are created during Hip Hop Hope. Hip Hop Hope provides an enriching and empowering learning community for youth to express themselves using a musical genre at the core of youth culture. Youth also get to explore issues of media literacy and the controversies surrounding Hip Hop culture before they step behind the mic to say what they think is important and what they think needs to be heard.

    Who Hip Hop Hope is for:
    Youth ages 14-18 who want to make their voices heard on issues they care about. Power of Hope staff and teaching artists who are skilled musicians, beatmakers, DJs, percussionists, writers, spoken word poets, beat-boxers and more will guide the process. The staff will include regional Hip Hop and Spoken-Word Artists, many of whom are recording artists themselves. Some youth who come to Hip Hop Hope have lots of prior experience with Hip Hop, and some have none — at Hip Hop Hope everyone is welcome.

Funding Sources

Foundation Partners 
Ashoka Innovators for the Public (provided the Technical Assistance Grant to create our new website!)
Bainbridge Island Arts and Humanities Fund
Baker Weaver Fund
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
Burning Foundation
Cricket Island Foundation
Endswell Foundation
Eulalie Bloedel Schneider Foundation
Ferguson Foundation
Fidelity Charitable Gift Fund
Gannett Foundation
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
The Harlan E. Anderson Foundation
Harvest Foundation
Hugh and Jane Ferguson Foundation
Icicle Fund
Joseph L. and Marjorie S. Steiner Foundation
Kalliopeia Foundation
The Little Foundation
Mark Torrance Foundation
New Tudor Foundation
OneFamily Foundation
Peck Family Foundation
Renewal Partners
RSF Global Community Fund
Satterberg Foundation
Seattle Foundation
Silicon Valley Community Foundation
Smiling Dog Foundation
Still Waters Fund
Tauck Foundation
Threshold Foundation
Tides Foundation
US Bancorp Foundation
Vancouver Foundation
Victoria Foundation
Virginia Wellington Cabot Foundation
Wild Old Women’s Charitable Lead Trust
Windermere Foundation

USA and CANADA Business and In-Kind Supporters 
Adobe Systems
Aria Foods, Inc
Beadman Enterprises
Bellingham Millwork
Bellingham Rotary
Birch Equipment Rental & Sales
Black Drop Coffeehouse
Buyers Market
Bubby Rose’s Bakery
Café Flora
Café Mam
Canadian Springs Water
Cascade Design Group
Cascadia Bakery
Chubby’s Diner
Colophon Cafe
Community Co-Op
Dick Beldington Potato
Dick’s Drive-In
EcoPacific Seafoods
Essential Baking
Food Country
Fresh Pix
Great Harvest Breads
Green Cuisine Restaurant
Hardware Sales
Hi Hoe Nursery
Jupiter Studios
Katrina Shoebox Campaign
Laird Norton Company
La Vie En Rose
Lifestyle Market
Lifestyle Select
Little Cheerful
Mallard Ice Cream
M. Eric McRory, DDS
Microsoft Employee Matching Fund
Moshi Moshi Sushi
Sophie and Michael Moore
Nature’s Path
Nielsen Brothers
Noah’s New York Bagels
North Coast Electric
Northwest School of the Arts
Odwalla, Inc.
Oregon Central Credit Union
Planet Organics
P.S.C. Natural Food
Que Pasa Mexican Foods
RE Store
Rice Insurance
Royal Blue Organics
Rudy’s Pizzeria
Seafood Producers Coopertative
Skagit River Ranch
Son’s Milling
Starbuck’s Coffee
Sub Pop Records
Taylor Made Group
Turabi Inc.
Uprising Breads Bakery
Vancity Credit Union
Waycross Investment Management
Whatcom Educational Credit Union
Wildfire Bakery & Pastry
The Willows Inn