Take a Kid to the Theatre (TAKTTT) is our outreach program in conjunction with YWCA Pathways, YWCA Somerset Village and YWCA Trinity Place-Reunite in Lynnwood, Interfaith Services and Cocoon House in Everett, and Vision House in Shoreline. Some of the services provided by TAKTTT include: providing tickets to EDP family-friendly performances to parents and kids in shelters, providing DVD copies of Missoula Children’s Theatre (MCT) summer shows for each partner facility, providing on-site theatre skills workshops conducted by educators at partner facilities, free enrollment in EDP theatre camps for kids living in partner facilities, and a giving tree in our lobby during the holiday show to help provide gifts to YMCA families in need.
TAKTTT was started in 2012 by long time Edmonds Driftwood Players member, Kathleen Huston.
Below is an excerpt from a My Edmonds News article about the Take a Kid to the Theatre program:
“I just thought it would be really great to do something for these kids,” Huston said. “They’re uprooted, often moving. They might have a mother and not a father, and a lot of these women are protected,” referring to those who have a protection order after being victims of domestic violence. Take a Kid to the Theater, Huston’s brainchild, brought its first group of viewers to the Wade James Theater to see the Missoula Children’s Theater (MCT) production of Jack and the Beanstalk in the summer of 2012. At this time, Huston’s sister was working for the YWCA, and she got Huston in touch with Noelle Nishida, children’s advocate at the YWCA Pathways for Women location in Lynnwood. Nishida loves event planning, she said, so when Huston explained her vision for Take a Kid to the Theater, Nishida quickly got on board. One of the first major obstacles the organization faced was transportation. The women’s group at the Mountlake Terrace Christian Church had helped the YWCA with transportation in the past, so Nishida got in touch with them.
Tonya Williams, president of the women’s group at the Mountlake Terrace Christian Church, began working with the YWCA because she wanted to do an outreach project that reached out to women in need. “We wanted to support them and just be there for them,” Williams said. Lila Baer, a driver, clerk and dispatcher for King’s Schools Transportation, was a member of that women’s group. After Williams told Baer that the YWCA needed transportation to the theater, she offered to donate her time as a driver.
“One thing I wasn’t planning on when we first started the program was having the parents join the kids but having them come to the show and seeing how excited their kids are, they’re much more supportive of the whole process.” Huston said. “Some of them are surprised at how excited the kids are.” The main concern Huston has for Take a Kid to the Theater is, naturally, funding. She funded the first trip in August 2012 herself, because she just wanted to see if there was interest and if the project was possible.
“We really do need bigger money to make sure we’ve got it all covered,” she said, “and we hope to expand the project with time.”
My Edmonds News, 7/8/2015, by Natalie Covate