2012-hampton-roads-youth-poetry-festival-79The 2015 Hampton Roads Youth Poetry Slam Festival, in its seventh year, featured young writershryp slam team 15, emcees, spoken word artists and performers for an epic event, centering on the powerful poetic expression of the youth in our community. Hampton Roads Youth Poets is part of a global network of 70 Creative/Youth Development organizations that present the world’s largest Youth Poetry Festival attracting thousands of attendees and 500 participants from almost every state in the US and countries like New Zealand, England, India and South Africa.

Something for Every Youth Poet! Each youth poet, ages 13 – 19, who competed in one of the qualifying slams, is automatically eligible* to become a member of the 2015 Hampton Roads Youth Poets.


Meet Raven Bland, Norfolk Youth Poet Laureate Winner

The Norfolk Youth Poet Laureate is a joint program of Teens with a Purpose, Hampton Roads Youth Poets, and in partnership with Urban Word, supported by PEN Center USA and the Academy of American Poets. The Norfolk Youth Poet Laureate program aims to identify young writers and leaders who are committed to civic and community engagement, poetry and performance, and leadership and education across Norfolk. Congratulations Raven Bland!!

Teens with a Purpose accepted submissions from young poets, rappers, leaders and activists ages 14-19 from across Norfolk who were interested in representing Norfolk as the inaugural Norfolk Youth Poet Laureate. A group of esteemed judges selected one teen to be honored with the title of Norfolk Youth Poet Laureate on Saturday, April 4th at Old Dominion University Theater.

View the full Hear This! Documentary that aired last spring on Cox Channel 11 last spring. A film about passion, competition, teamwork, and trust.  It’s about the joy of being young and the pain of growing up.  It’s about speaking out, making noise and finding your voice.  It also just happens to be about poetry plus the grassroots organization behind this movement and the community they create for young poets, singers, artists and other aspiring young agents for positive change! This film covers the 5th annual Hampton Roads Youth Poetry Slam Festival.

Tune into Cox Channel 11 for Hear This The Series, Fridays at 10pm.