Youth are recruited into LOVE’s entry-level Media Arts Program (MAP) from alternative schools, group homes, youth-serving organizations and priority schools, where LOVE delivers programs. These youth have personal experience with many forms of violence. The Media Arts Program (MAP) uses photography, music, video, journalism and creative writing to teach youth how to document the violence in their lives and community, and create reality-based solutions. Using different mediums, youth learn tangible skills and how to positively express themselves, as they examine the impact of violence in their world. By giving youth a voice we empower them to make the positive changes they want to see in their communities.
Participants of MAP then graduate into Leadership Training where they develop the skills, confidence and passion to become Youth Leaders in LOVE’s community violence prevention team. Each year, Youth Leaders reach out to thousands of young people, helping to inspire positive action. This unique combination of knowledge, experience and opportunity enables them to be effective leaders in promoting awareness, influencing attitudes and effecting change amongst their peers. It is through this peer based model that LOVE’s programs work on both an individual and a community level.
- Public speaking, producing and performing
- Advanced photography, video production & creation of public service announcements
- Community presentations and group facilitation skill training
SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY VIOLENCE PREVENTION OUTREACH PROGRAM
LOVE Youth Leaders work in priority schools and neighbourhoods throughout Toronto. They educate their peers, professionals, and concerned community members about the causes, consequences and solutions to violence. Youth Leaders use their presentation skills and group facilitation abilities, as well as educational tools that they have created, to examine the impact of violence and share reality based strategies for prevention.
To complement Leadership Training, each year, a 5-day intensive Leadership Training Camp is held, joining Youth Leaders from across the country to further enhance their leadership skills which they can then take back to their schools, neighbourhoods and communities.
In 2018, LOVE celebrates its’ 25th Anniversary with LOVE Across Canada funded by the Government of Canada. Youth have the opportunity to lead experiential learning workshops representing the communities, geographies, cultures and languages of each of the four regions where LOVE delivers programming. LOVE Across Canada acknowledges the many different lived experiences of youth, the challenges they face, and ways that more young people can be engaged to have a greater voice in shaping the future of Canada.
Youth are given the space to work together and build their own workshops surrounding creativity and identity, while also developing broad strategic alliances to create a sustainable and inclusive Canada. LOVE youth participate in workshops and discussion to better understand the legacy of colonialism and find ways to work together to support our diverse communities with a message of solidarity across Canada.