Japanese Canadian Youth Cohort

volunteer 2014

The Powell Street Festival Society is excited to introduce the Japanese Canadian Youth Cohort! 

Applications for the 2022 Cohort are now Closed

What is the Japanese Canadian (JC) Youth Cohort? 

The JC Youth Cohort is a free summer program for young Japanese Canadians, 19-29 years old, raised outside of British Columbia. Do you have an interest in cultural heritage and community building through live events? This program will provide training and education in event production, culture, history, interpersonal communication skills development, networking with cultural event producers and artists, inter-generational relationship building and hands-on tasks to create an embodied experience of Japanese Canadian identity as vibrant and vital. Three applicants will be accepted each year. 


  • Build hands-on skills in live cultural events production 
  • Educational and personal growth through Cultural Workers Training  
  • Networking with Japanese Canadians across the country 
  • Tangible connection for people outside of the province to connect with Japanese Candian history and their furusato (hometown) 
  • Mentorship through engagement with elders and non-profit professionals 
  • Diverse volunteering experience with over 200 Festival volunteers 

Eligibility and Requirements 

  • We are accepting applicants from Japanese Canadians 19-29 years old, raised outside of British Columbia. 
  • As a portion of the program will be remote and online, a stable internet connection and a device with a video camera and microphone are necessary. 
  • You must be available to travel for the in-person Production Residency, Sunday, July 24 to Wednesday, August 3, spanning the Powell Street Festival weekend (July 30 & 31). Proof of full vaccination and COVID-19 testing may be required before travel, depending on Coastal Health Orders. Travel, accommodations, and a per diem will be covered. 
  • Some manual labour will be required over the production week, which includes lifting heavy objects and standing and walking for long periods. Please let us know in your application if these are barriers to your participation. 
  • A Criminal record check will be needed as you will be working with vulnerable populations.


This is a hybrid program from May to August with both online and in-person training. Expect this to be a once per week commitment up until the in-person component, Sunday, July 24 to Wednesday, August 3. 

  • May: pre-training onboarding  
  • June: online training begins (ie there are a series of videos to watch, online discussions)  
  • July: online training continues  
  • Sunday, July 24 to Wednesday, August 3: Travel to Vancouver for the Production Residency 
  • August/September: Online debrief and Post Program Survey 

Online meeting times will be determined based on accepted applicants’ availability.

Application Deadline: Tuesday, February 28, 2022, 11:59 pm PST  – Acceptances will be sent in the beginning of April

Application Process 

You can apply through our online form, or you are free to submit a video, audio, or written application answering our questions located in the PDF below.  

If you choose to submit your application by video, audio, or written means, please email your application to the Program Coordinator ( samantha [@] powellstreetfestival.com ) and include “JC Youth Cohort 2022” in the subject line. No phone calls, please. Powell Street Festival Society thanks all applicants in advance for their interest; however, only accepted candidates will be contacted. Accepted applicants will be contacted in April. 


Questions or need support with your application? 

Email: samantha [@] powellstreetfestival.com 


About the Powell Street Festival Society 

The Powell Street Festival Society’s (PSFS) mission is to celebrate Japanese Canadian art and culture to connect communities. The main activity is producing the Powell Street Festival (PSF), an annual celebration of Japanese Canadian arts, music and culture in Vancouver’s historic Japanese Canadian neighbourhood, Paueru Gai in the Downtown Eastside (DTES). With the support of over 250 volunteers, this two-day free event is the largest of its kind in Canada and the longest running festival in Metro Vancouver, entering its 46th year. PSFS is a non-profit professional arts presenter that is progressive, diverse, contemporary, and compelling.