Project Publish: Support InkWell's 3rd Anthology

After organizing over 125 free creative writing workshops for people with mental health and addictions issues and publishing two anthologies of their work, InkWell Workshops  has built an inclusive community space for those who often don’t have an opportunity to tell their stories. Now we are reaching out to the wider community for support in ensuring that our writers will continue to be heard.

While assembling our third anthology, we received word that we would not receive our anticipated funding due to provincial cuts to arts and culture projects. We need your help to publish the new anthology and to organize its launch party. We have four weeks to raise $5,000. This annual anthology and its celebration have become important sources of confidence, pride, and professional experience for our participants, whose stories are often ignored in larger conversations about mental illness and addiction.


1.    Donate – any amount helps, no matter how small!

2.    Share this campaign with people you know via email and social media. Share it multiple times if you can!

3.    Offer to donate a product or service to incentivize others to give cash.

4.    Like our Facebook  page and follow us on Twitter  and Instagram .

5.    Sign up for our e-newsletter.



Money raised through this campaign will go directly to publishing 200 copies of the third anthology in our series, New Writing from InkWell Workshops, and launching it at a public event on June 13, 2019.

Three participants have worked on an editorial committee with two InkWell Workshops staff and our peer support worker to select writing by our participants for the annual anthology. The books are edited, designed, typeset, and published by professionals with lived experience.

We require funding for this venture as soon as possible, and we would be extremely grateful for any assistance you can give. Every donation helps, no matter how small.

Any additional funds raised above $5,000 will go towards expanding our programming and incorporating as a not-for-profit organization, which will help us sustain this growth. 


“InkWell Workshops is a fabulous initiative. Offering creative writing workshops, mentorship and encouragement to people living with mental illness and addictions — and doing so by using instructors who have known the same challenges — stands out as a wonderful way to recognize the humanity of people in need, to show empathy, and to provide tangible encouragement where it really matters. My own late sister, Karen Hill, was a writer and visual artist who lived with mental illness, and she found profound satisfaction, comfort and support through her own avid participation in arts-based programs.”
Lawrence Hill, author of The Book of Negroes and The Illegal

“We can all play a role in moving mental health forward in Canada and InkWell Workshops is a wonderful example of this. The act of writing as a community is just the beginning for InkWell. Their print anthology and public launch also provide important platforms through which people living with mental illness and addiction can find vital connections to each other and to the world. InkWell creates space for human connection around shared experiences, for hope and for friendship.”
Mary Deacon, Chair of Bell Let’s Talk

 “Over the years, I’ve attended InkWell’s readings and anthology launches and have been blown away by the energy in the room, by the support of the arts community (the place was always completely packed), and by the vibrancy and strength of the stories that were being told. InkWell Workshops is one of a kind, both a vital part of the arts community in Toronto and a safe, empowering space for people living with mental illness and addiction issues. It is a real gem.”
Ayelet Tsabari, author of The Art of Leaving and The Best Place on Earth

“Promotion of peer-led arts initiatives is vital. InkWell provides the platform, the space, the support, and the acknowledgment that creative outlets by and for people with lived experience are essential to wellness. Write On!”
Chyrell D. Bellamy, PhD, Associate Professor Yale University & Director of Lived Experience Transformation Leadership Academy

“Much has been said about the healing benefits of art but art is also struggle, vulnerability and exposure and it needs supportive scaffolding. The wonderful instructors at InkWell know this. Let’s face it: books are not immaculately conceived. They are the result of a messy process and often messier lives. The instructors at InkWell know that solidarity, compassion and flexibility can make a big difference. I hope you’ll support this incredible program and the world-making energy that is storytelling.”
Kyo Maclear, author of Birds Art Life

“InkWell creates space for people to learn new skills, tap into their creativity and find a sense of belonging, all of which are vital components of recovery.”
Dr. Sacha Agrawal, Staff Psychiatrist, CAMH


Vision: A vibrant community of writers and readers in which all live free from stigma

Mission: To run writing workshops for people with mental health and addictions issues led by professional artist-educators with lived experience of mental illness

Values: Recovery, Empowerment, Access, Diversity (READ)

InkWell Workshops offers free, drop-in creative writing workshops for people with mental health and addictions issues. Led by award-winning writers with lived experience, our goal is to offer an inclusive community space where diverse stories can emerge. InkWell builds ability, establishes new and vibrant voices, and strengthens connections between individuals who, too often, have been silenced and ignored.

As a peer-led program run by professional artists, InkWell is the first of its kind in Canada. Founded in 2016 by Eufemia Fantetti and Kathy Friedman, it is an unincorporated artists’ collective currently led by Kathy Friedman, Mahak Jain, Stuart Ross, and Leanne Toshiko Simpson.

InkWell’s team of award-winning professional writers have planned and facilitated workshops in fiction, creative non-fiction, poetry, spoken word, children’s literature, science fiction & fantasy, screenwriting, playwriting, and revision. Each two-hour session includes time for reading, writing, and sharing. We also offer opportunities for participants to receive feedback on their work in one-on-one blue-pencil meetings and to discuss issues such as research, ethics, self-doubt, and the publishing world in monthly literary salons. Snacks and TTC tokens are provided and the workshops take place in a fully accessible, scent-free, and nut-free space.

We have presented workshops in partnership with CMHA Toronto, the Festival of Literary Diversity, CAMH’s Aboriginal Engagement and Outreach, The 519, SKETCH Working Arts, West Neighbourhood House, Across Boundaries, and the Toronto Public Library.


We have a few ways of expressing our gratitude!

Remember that you have the option of donating your incentive back to the campaign, if you wish.

Online Thank-You - $5
All $5 donations will receive an online thank-you by name on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

E-Copy of the Anthology - $15
All $15 donors will receive an e-copy of the new anthology plus an online thank-you by name on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

Thank-You Poem - $25
An InkWell Workshops participant will write you a short, personalized poem, which we will email to you. We will also thank you by name on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

Signed Copy of the Anthology - $50
A copy of our 2019 anthology, signed by the contributors and mailed to you. We will also thank you by name on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

Copies of All Three of Our Anthologies - $75
We will mail you copies of all three of our anthologies in the series, New Writing from InkWell Workshops. We will also thank you by name on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

Poetry Coaching Session with Stuart Ross - $75 (0/2)
Celebrated poet and editor Stuart Ross will critique a dozen pages of your poems and discuss your work with you via phone or Skype (45 mins. session).

Mention in the Anthology - $100
We will thank you by name in our 2019 anthology and mail you a copy signed by the contributors. We will also thank you on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website: .

Huge Thank-You - $250+
We will thank you by name in our 2019 anthology and mail you copies of all three of our anthologies, New Writing by InkWell Workshops. We will reserve a seat for you and a guest at the book launch in June 2019. We will also thank you on Facebook, Twitter, and on our website:

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InkWell Workshops
North York, ON

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