Reading with RaiseUp

Story telling

Fundraising organization raises money for LGBTQ summer camp by reading books to children.

Members from RaiseUp and the Audrobox raise funds for a LGBTQ summer camp by reading.  Drag Story Time was hosted at Chapters in St. John’s. Amy Clearly/Kicker 

Amy Cleary

One of St. John’s more colourful events is Drag Story Time.

A drag king or queen reads a book to the children who show up for story time.  The organization uses the money to fund a summer camp for LGBTQ children.

The entire event started at a board table, said Charlie Murphy.

“We wanted something that was family friendly, that played with gender roles, we wanted to show that drag is fun and cool, and just playing around those roles,” said Murphy, president of RiseUp. “From that, we reached out to our local talent – drag queens and drag kings, and it was a partnership.”

Taylor Stocks plays the character called Doctor Androbox.

“Drag is for everyone and it’s an exaggeration play around of who you can be and how you are perceived in the world and you know a fair bit of humor along with it,” said Stocks.

The members of RaiseUp, said Murphy, pick a book based on certain cr

“It’s kind of different every time,” said Murphy. “Its more like a collaboration between us and the performer at the time. So sometimes we would just go around and look for a book with a nice message about love and acceptance.”

According to Stocks, the experiences with the children are always different and exciting.

“Having the children dance around to the songs that I wrote was entertaining and something that I have never experienced before,” said Stocks.

The donations gathered at Drag Story Time go to a four-day youth summer camp created by Parents of Trans Genders NL.

The camp’s goal  is to connect youth all cross the province who are trans, gender creative and non-binary youth so they can become apart of the LGBTQ community in Newfoundland and Labrador.


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