Impact Tomorrow Expo is an Entrepreneurship Conference and Pitch Competition hosted by youth. ACCESS was a lead Sponsor of the conference, which evolved from the first Impact Tomorrow expo in 2013, started by Mississauga high school students who chose to donate proceeds to ACCESS which is now a mentor of the team.
The sixth Youth Making a Difference Conference was hosted by ACCESS at the Brampton Community Door. The event featured activities, stories and instructions to help students start socially-focused projects. Students worked in smaller groups and produced tangible results. YMAD6 received a Social Good Design Award.
Youth leaders and activists will received hands-on learning opportunities from experienced facilitators who have worked with countless youth-led organizations and initiatives across the Greater Toronto Area to build stronger organizations and create greater impact in their communities. The ACCESS Speak Up for Change Workshop Series is funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation.
Regional Youth Roundtable, a grassroots initiative bringing together youth-led organizations, alleviating pressures facing minority groups, sharing experiences and advice, and collectively taking action on issues in the community. The Regional Youth Roundtable (RYR) is funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation’s Youth Opportunities Fund with the Organizational Mentorship of ACCESS. Formally launched in Fall 2014, the the group hopes to offer support towards all youth-led organizations in Peel Region, helping them grow and reach their full potential thanks to collaboration, events and community consultations. ACCESS is providing the RYR team with organizational development and ongoing mentorship, supporting the young leaders in creating change in their community.
Phanuel (pronounced “fan-well”) is a young man born and raised in Haiti. He was accepted into university, but like most in his situation, he was unable to afford the high costs. With ACCESS funding, Phanuel began studies at Universite Notre Dame d’Haiti (the University of Notre Dame of Haiti) where he studied in the Faculty of Economic, Social and Political Studies for first year. Due to the Earthquake in January 2010, Phanuel has since transferred to a school in Texas, USA where he started in August 2010. He is studying in a four-year BA in Theological Studies at The University of the Americas. Phanuel is highly motivated to receive an education and to return to Haiti to help his country.
Team Empower is the ACCESS Youth Ambassador Program for high school students. It was developed to give students the chance to inspire meaningful change in their community through awareness initiatives, fundraisers and community-building. Team Empower members met regularly, go to conferences, participate in and organize workshops, and network with like-minded youth. It is a unique opportunity for students to connect with community organizations, meet students from other schools, earn volunteer hours, gain skills, and even run their own program or join the ACCESS team.
ACCESS funded 4 conferences through Alianza in a rural village in Guatemala’s Northwestern San Marcos Department. The vocational aptitude conferences help junior high school students to become inspired and interested in a variety of careers outside the traditional subsistence farming (which is rapidly becoming untenable as the land base shrinks and the population grows). Students compleate aptitude tests, discuss their aspirations, and hear from role models who have gone on to become (for example, nurses, social workers, business people). Similar to YMAD, the conferences also focus on Leadership. Workshops were held for students receiving bursaries, over a period of 5 days. The themes of these workshops included Self Esteem, Youth Rights and Obligations, Reproductive Health, Youth Social Issues, and Relationships.