Turtle House Art/Play Centre is a Special Arts Program

for Children and Parents Coming from Regions of Conflict

Previous Turtle House Programs

Since January 2008 Turtle House has provided a welcoming and inclusive environment for Newcomer/refugee families from different ethno-racial, cultural, language and faith backgrounds.
Turtle House Family Arts Program
Through art, conversation, and shared meals, parents and children have connected with each other, built relationships with other families and with Turtle House artists and volunteers.

Our second program Turtle House Ceramics – a ceramics training program for Newcomer refugee artists and non-artists has been running since 2017 with support from Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council Artists in Communities and Schools Projects, and the Gardiner Museum.

In April 2019, Turtle House Ceramics held in the Gardiner’s lobby a
wonderful reception and exhibition titled “Mixed Feelings: Leaving Home, Finding Home” to celebrate Refugee Rights Month.
While we as an organization are now disbanding, we are happy to say that the vision and mission of Turtle House will continue to thrive as our programs have found new homes with like-minded organizations.
Continuity of Our Programs
Click here for the CAS2020 digital catalogue.
We partnered with Working Women Community Centre to apply for Federal Funding for the Turtle House Family Arts Program through the Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. The application was successful and the program has received conditional funding for the next five years. Working Women Community Centre will retain the name “Turtle House Family Arts” as they administer it over the years.
We partnered with FCJ Refugee Centre to participate in the Gardiner Museum’s Community Arts Space 2020 Project (See the CAS2020 “Community is Essential” digital catalogue) The end date of our ceramics project was adjusted to account for pandemic related delays and the final stage of project management has transitioned to FCJ Refugee Centre. 
FCJ Refugee Centre welcomed the opportunity for their community to participate in the art programming that they would otherwise not have had access to.  We are hopeful that they will receive funding to continue the ceramics training program beyond this project.
Your donations over the years have been critical in enabling us to offer our very valuable programs free of charge to children and parents coming from regions of conflict, as well as to Newcomer refugee artists. 
As Turtle House Art/Play Centre is dissolving, we welcome general donations through Canada Helps which would enable us to cover our related final expenses.
Thank you for your support throughout the years!
“I thank you so much for this program because I and my children enjoyed it so much…I hope there will be a program in the summer”



Mother who participated in the Turtle House Program with her children