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About Us

Who We Are

The Canadian Society of Children’s Authors, Illustrators and Performers (CANSCAIP), is a national membership organization. We promote the professional development of creators for children and teens, through support for their creativity, craft, and business practice.

As well as 400+ professionally published author and illustrator Members,  CANSCAIP has 600+ associate Friends who are emerging or self-published writers or illustrators, plus educators, librarians, publishers, and journalists.

CANSCAIP’s professional development activities and resources include monthly meetings with guest speakers, Packaging Your Imagination conference (in-person and online), webinars, promoting our Members for school and library visits, Writing for Children Competition, Prairie Horizons conference, quarterly newsletter, Blue Pencil mentorship program, and more.

CANSCAIP is a not-for-profit national arts service organization and a registered charitable organization. We are inclusive, respectful, supportive, professional, welcoming and proudly Canadian.

Our History

CANSCAIP grew out of a Canada Day conference in 1977, organized by the Port Colborne Public Library. Eleven creators for children—writers Claire Mackay, Jean Little, Madeline Freeman, Audrey McKim, Madeline Kronby, Bert Williams, Mike Wilkins and Nancy Cleaver; illustrators Alan Daniel and J. Merle Smith; and performer C. Sam LaBrecque—had been invited to share their expertise.

Many were strangers to each other, and they all realized they needed (and wanted) to know others working in their field. Out of this need for professional connections, CANSCAIP was born.

We celebrated our 40th anniversary in 2017.


CANSCAIP offers an inclusive and supportive community for our Members and Friends in their creative work of writing, illustrating, and performing. We believe all young people have a right to see themselves in stories that reflect diversity and celebrate differences.

We recognize that creators in the BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, disabled, and other marginalized communities may have faced difficulties finding professional opportunities in which their perspectives and experiences are valued.

CANSCAIP stands by organizations working for structural change within Canada’s book industry.

To build and support an inclusive and welcoming environment, CANSCAIP:

  • Includes presenters from diverse backgrounds at our conferences, webinars, and monthly meetings;
  • Addresses topics such as appropriation, authentic cultural representation, the need for sensitivity readers, and takes concerns and suggestions about inclusion seriously;
  • Commits to expansion of our membership across the country by promoting a safe place to meet online and in-person;
  • Begins our events with a land acknowledgement statement and an invitation to indicate personal pronouns;
  • Creates additional support for our membership by networking with other like-minded organizations and programs.

CANSCAIP office is located within the Centre for Social Innovation, Annex.
720 Bathurst St., Suite 503, Toronto, ON M5S 2R4

Email: office@canscaip.org
Phone: 1-416-515-1559

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