VICTORIA -- A Victoria non-profit society focusing on youth writing and outreach has received a national award for its work on literacy in the community.

Story Studio Writing Society is this year’s B.C. recipient of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award (COFLA).

One group from each province and territory is selected for the COFLA each year for its contributions to community literacy, teaching and service.

Story Studio Writing Society was founded in 2011 with a goal of connecting youth authors with experienced writers and illustrators.

Every year, the group publishes around 1,500 books that are written by children and youth, with a focus on lower-income or marginalized families, which make up approximately 80 per cent of the society’s participants.

“We're delighted to be recognized for the important work of our staff, volunteers and donors,” said Sarah Tarnopolsky, Story Studio board chair, in a release Tuesday.

“Stories help us process the present and imagine the future. Given the challenges our communities face, it’s now more important than ever for youth to be given the skills and space to tell their stories,” she said.

Story Studio is currently working with the Greater Victoria Public Library organization to mentor young writers and publish a collection of youth-authored stories later this month.

The non-profit has also worked with the Victoria, Saanich and Sooke school districts as well as the Royal BC Museum by leading workshops for teachers and parents on how to support and inspire youth writing.

Story Studio will be receiving a $500 grant, a council of the Federation Literacy Award medallion and a certificate signed by Premier John Horgan for winning this year’s COFLA award for B.C.