Here you will find writings that give some insight into Trinity’s programs.

The Art of Finding Yourself

Posted on Sep 21, 2015 in

 

FINDING YOURSELF PART ONE

Finding yourself is the journey of a lifetime.

A journey that will have periods of greater intensity, for instance, in your youth and your senior years, and significant occasions involving birth and death.

It is one of the most heart-breaking, most joyous of journeys you will ever undertake.

Here are some guidelines to keep in mind as we share our journeys together in these notes:

Be as open to life as you can.

Neither deny, nor reject automatically experiences that make you uncomfortable.

Having said that, always follow your feelings when it comes to personal safety.

The more you can develop the capacity to sustain emotional discomfort until your whole being offers understanding and solutions the more open your life will be.

Know that your life has begun. It doesn’t begin when you finish high school or college or university someday. Nor does it begin when you leave home, get your first job, or start a family.

Despite what any voice tells you, don’t limit your engagement in the present. Your life has begun.

Certain knowledge, certain achievements, certain skills are of course age related. But they do not signify the worth of a life. Your worth as a human being lies in your capacity to love, to grow, to learn and create, and to express yourself. None of these are age related. Nor is your worth as a human being ever actually in question.

Expect that you will likely move through many changes, many transitions, many deaths and many births.

You are never doing only the obvious task at hand but your heart’s work in creating yourself and the world.

Either everything in life is miraculous or nothing is said Einstein- live as though everything is.

Forgive those people who hurt you and move on

Live in love and be guided by kindness.

A Summer in Review

Posted on Sep 17, 2015 in

September… The summer behind us, the school year ahead. Just like that. It feels like only yesterday we were handing out certificates and applauding our Peer Leaders’ great year of work back in May. Yet on the other hand, it feels like ages ago.

We tend to fit a lot in to our summers.

We started out at PACT studios with several days filming with our summer student hires and retired educators at the end of June. Our workshops are being transformed into on-line training programs. Everyone seemed pretty fascinated with the whole process of ‘lights, camera, action’ and meeting other peer leaders from six high schools and four universities.

Then we were right into our Summer Leadership Lab. This year, our partnership with Laureate International College enabled eight summer students to gain GPP3O and/or IDC 4U credits in blended learning courses developed and delivered with the support of our very creative teacher, Danielle Atkinson, and four university student TAs.  We, as always, somehow managed to fit a lot in to the course. In addition to the Trinity-style peer leadership training Alan and I carry out, Danielle introduced yoga, mindfulness and meditation. As well, there were self-defense lessons, university and college campus tours, and post-secondary prep workshops. Then there were the trips – Fort York, St. Lawrence Market Gallery, City Hall, Queens Park, City of Toronto Archives, CAMH, Toronto Star, Ontario Historical Society, Bridgepoint Health, Don Jail, Old City Hall Courts, AIDS Memorial, the Acropolis, AGO, Toronto Reference Library, The Scott Mission, South Asian Autism Awareness Centre, Baycrest Health Centre Creative Arts Studio, Canoeing at Harbourfront – and the interviews – with Jayne Fry of Toronto Parks and Trees Foundation, Constable Shayne Gordon Toronto of Police 23rd Division, Matthew Jennings of Raymond James Ltd., Artist Monica Gutierrez, Jackie Advichuk from Inner City Outtripping Centre, City Councillors Mike Layton and Mary-Margaret McMahon, DECA’s Alison McMurray and Gay Stephenson, CJFE’s Tom Henheffer, Nadine Guimond from Tangerine, Jacqui Strachan of People for Education, and Glenda McLachlan of Quetico Foundation. No doubt I’ve missed some place and some one, but you get the idea. A lot was fit into the month of July.

But I’m not finished yet. Thanks to our partnership with Laureate International College, we had three Japanese students join us for two weeks of the program. It was rewarding to witness the students overcome the language barrier and cultural differences and join in with everyone. Hosting the Japanese guests made our peer leaders tourists in their own city with trips to CN Tour, Harbourfront, PanAm Games, Toronto Zoo, the ROM, bowling, and of course, a trip to our part of Canada would not be complete without a trip to Niagara Falls.

And then there was Quetico in August. Trinity has partnerships with the Quetico Foundation Ridley Youth Wilderness Program (RYWP) and Toronto Police Service TROOP program which made it possible for a team of six Peer Leaders, who reflected the diversity of urban new Canadians, to go on a wilderness canoe trip into the heart of Quetico Provincial Park. The purpose of the RYWP program is to instill an appreciation of wilderness stewardship in our future leaders. The students were guided by our intrepid TDSB outdoor-ed teacher Torie Gervais, and Constable Shayne Gordon from TROOP. The group travelled by Greyhound and Caribou Coach bus to Atikokan, met the mayor and councilors, toured the town, paddled in Quetico Park for six days, did some volunteer field study work with the Park Biologist Brian Jackson, met with Park Superintendent Trevor Gibb at Dawson Lake Pavillion, visited Lac LaCroix Youth Camp at Mink Lake, celebrated the Park at an end of season BBQ, toured Souris River Canoe and XY Paddle maker facilities, visited the Atikokan High School Outers Program, saw and learned about Steep Rock abandoned open pit mine, and stopped in to see Kakabeka Falls on the way back to the airport for a Porter flight home.

I was planning on talking about everything that is coming up for us this school year, but I really think that should wait until next time. I think you get the idea – Trinity tends to fit a lot into our summers!