To catch you up on the on-goings of our workshop;
From New Circles Community Services Executive Director, Alykhan Suleman, “The youth unemployment rate is 18%, nearly triple Toronto’s overall rate. However, for newcomer youth, who make up the majority of our clients, youth unemployment is over 30%, as they face additional cultural and language barriers. Free employment training programs, particularly for those under 17 years, are very limited in the community.”
One of our two locations/programs for today, New Circles Community Services offers a summer training session to train people on essential retail and office skills in order to prepare them for entry level jobs. The summer camp, called LIST (Leaders in Servie Training), has an office skills component and a retail component. The retail classes are integrated into a unique clothing bank concept that functions as a “store” and a training facility. They also run a program there to help prepare young newcomer students for the start of school: providing them with backpacks, notebooks, and other school supplies. All of this under the same roof as computer skills classes, other organization collaborations (we watched a design challenge run by the Design Exchange, a not-for-profit design museum), and the GLOW (Gently Loved Outfits to Wear) store. Two of our groups headed that way to try and convey the action and the story of the organization in images rather than words.
The other group headed to the Toronto Public library where there is a summer camp program for young kids. The students focused on two programs that were particularly interesting: a STEM program and an art class. In the stem class, young kids learned about electronics and played with snap circuit boards while the participants in the art session learned about and practiced origami. These stories, and those of New Circles, exemplify the initiative in the greater Toronto region to provide programs that make assimilation and integration easier for newcomers to the community. For those who are trying to remake a life unsettled by migration, they are a useful resource and place of community and we hope to begin to tell that story.
And now a Blurb from One of our Advanced Students: Sara Addetia
Today we viewed our pictures during our daily critique. Today we were asked to speak about their pictures. This brought a new view on our photographs. We then went through a discussion/lesson about different types of lighting. We went outside and practiced taking silhouettes of each other using the natural light. We then returned to view Wendy’s presentation about curing treatable blindness in Nepal. We then ate lunch and headed out on our second field mission. We split in our groups and went to 2 different locations. Fred and Wendy’s groups went to the Flemingdon Park Toronto Public Library, where they photographed an origami camp and children’s activities. Sarah and Arthur’s groups went to New Circles, where they photographed the G.L.O.W and the L.I.S.T programs. We finally returned after sitting in heavy traffic for less than an hour. We then ate dinner, downloaded and completed our group critiques. It was amazing day 5!
Check out some of the student work below: