In-Community Retreats & Programs

at the Highlights Foundation

5_6 Asian American Voices Retreat
Native Creatives at an In-Community Retreat
Rainbow Retreat Group photo
Muslim Storytellers Gathered in the Barn
Latinx Voices 2022 Retreat

Find an In-Community Program that Fits Your Needs:

Writing Through Trauma to Empower Readers: A Working In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: April 11, 2024

Asian and Asian American Voices: An In-Community Retreat

Starts: May 2, 2024

Jewish Symposium: An In-Community Gathering for Jewish Writers and Illustrators

Starts: May 5, 2024

Black Voices: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: July 7, 2024

Neurodiverse Writers and Illustrators: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: August 8, 2024

Native Creatives: An In-Community Retreat

Starts: August 21, 2024

Latinx Voices: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: October 27, 2024

Rainbow Retreat: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

Starts: October 31, 2024

What Are In-Community Programs & Retreats?

In-community retreats and programs offer reserved and respected spaces for children’s authors and illustrators in affinity groups to find connected care, learning, growth, and collaboration—together.  They’re part of our Essential Conversations Series, and include retreats on our campus, online workshops, and other programming.  Some opportunities are application-based, funded through donations, partnerships and grants.  Others are available for open registration.

What would become In-Community programming at the Highlights Foundation began as far back as 2010, when a member of the Highlights Foundation community brought forth an idea for a program specifically for Jewish writers.  Offerings have evolved since, and now we’ll offer ten in-community retreats on our campus in 2024, plus additional online programming and workshops.

It made me think about all the writing conferences I’ve attended before and how I’ve always found some support, but also have always spent considerable time on the margins, explaining so much about the pieces I’ve submitted to workshop, or waiting around during cocktails and parties where I just don’t fit, and where I often leave, feeling even more alone and set apart. Here every minute of the time we had together was something I could and would want to be a part of, and again, that was something so refreshing to experience as an individual and a writer.

8-30_PJ Library Fun Group photo

At In-Community Retreats and In-Person Events, You’ll Find:

  • A mix of time to gather, network, learn, and retreat on our campus, with an agenda thoughtfully prepared in coordination with your faculty hosts.
  • Ample time for independent work, meeting informally with fellow creatives, and resting.
  • Lodging and meals included.

    At In-Community Online Programs and Events, You’ll Find:

    • Learning and connection opportunities carefully design by faculty in collaboration with the Highlights Foundation.
    • A range of course types, topics, and formats.
    • Gathering through Zoom and our online classroom platform, depending on your course or program.
      Zoom Sessions from Amplify

      From Our Alumni & Faculty

      Natasha Khan Kazi

      Community doesn’t even sum it up. My whole life, I’ve walked this Earth feeling somewhat like an alien. The experiences that were happening to me, I just didn’t find them in other people that I was meeting. And when I [joined the Muslim Storytellers]…every time that I share one of these experiences with them, there’s just an instant connection. Like they’ve had that very moment at the age of five, or that moment growing up, or that experience with their family, and all these things that were just jumbling around inside me finally have definitions. They have language. They have ways of being explained 

      Natasha Khan Kazi

      Lyn Miller-Lachmann

      …that giant Lego town behind me? In 2013, I celebrated the launch of my middle grade novel ROGUE, my first, featuring an autistic protagonist like myself, with that town with mini figures and a billboard made of Lego bricks, because I was so isolated from the writing community. Then in 2015 I discovered Highlights, and came to retreats where the welcoming staff accommodated my food restrictions and my need for the perfect balance of community and solitude. Since then I have found my people at Highlights, and the support and inspiration I’ve received has led me to write more books that draw from my experience of growing up autistic. 

      Lyn-Miller Lachmann

      We were all Black authors and illustrators at different stages of the publishing journey… I am so grateful for the opportunity to get to know so many wonderful creators. Additionally, The Brown Bookshelf team shared with us such a wealth of information. They taught us how to advocate for ourselves with our publishers, helped us connect with others in the Black community who could spread the word about our books, and inspired pride in our Black storytelling traditions. Having space to discuss the challenges of publishing as a Black creator but also uncovering for us the immense opportunities was inspiring and enlightening.

      Lisa Stringfellow

      Find an In-Community Program that Fits Your Needs:

      Writing Through Trauma to Empower Readers: A Working In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

      Starts: April 11, 2024

      Asian and Asian American Voices: An In-Community Retreat

      Starts: May 2, 2024

      Jewish Symposium: An In-Community Gathering for Jewish Writers and Illustrators

      Starts: May 5, 2024

      Black Voices: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

      Starts: July 7, 2024

      Neurodiverse Writers and Illustrators: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

      Starts: August 8, 2024

      Native Creatives: An In-Community Retreat

      Starts: August 21, 2024

      Latinx Voices: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

      Starts: October 27, 2024

      Rainbow Retreat: An In-Community Retreat for Storytellers

      Starts: October 31, 2024

      Copyright © 2024 Highlights Foundation. All rights reserved. Tax-exempt 501(c)(3) Organization

      CONNECT

      Contact Us

      Phone:
      570-253-1192

      Retreat Center Address:
      392 Boyds Mills Road

      Milanville, PA 18443

      Mailing Address:
      814 Court Street
      Honesdale, PA 18431

      OUR MISSION

      The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.

      Website design and development by Tandem Web Co.

      Our Mission in Action

      Share Your Story, Inspire a Child
      Scholarships
      Equity & Inclusion in Kidlit
      Partners & Sponsors

      The Highlights Foundation positively impacts children by amplifying the voices of storytellers who inform, educate, and inspire children to become their best selves.  Learn more about our impact.