Radiozilla Reflection

My grade eleven year was largely highlighted by my experience in the TDSB and Facing History and Ourselves “Genocide and Crimes Against Humanities”course. Through it my class and I were able to explore topics that sometimes rendered us speechless and often produced new inspiration in our minds. Everyday in class we would learn about atrocious events of the past or present, at home or abroad. We would try to step into the shoes of the victims and the perpetrators, and understand the atmosphere around such events. However, throughout the course we always knew that what we were studying was too far removed from our lives for us to be helpful. If they were current issues, we struggled to find a way that we, Torontonian high school students, could tackle such issues. It was often very distressing to delve into difficult questions when none of us could really provide an answer.

When Facing History & Ourselves and Regent Park Focus teamed up for the “Radiozilla” project, it seemed they had found a very real way for us to step up and start challenging this obstacle. Through creating our very own radio program, we were not only able to learn from each other and start answering our big questions, but we were able to share what we learned with our community. In small groups of students, brought together from all over the TDSB, we chose topics that we were drawn to and wanted to further investigate. While putting together our radio show, we were able to talk to experts (a social psychologist and Holocaust survivor, for example), have conversations with the public and our peers, while also learning what happens behind the scenes at a radio studio. Media can be a wonderful thing; it allows for the flow of constant and diverse communication -- a much-needed tool if you’re seeking change.

What I learned from this project was that although at this time in my life I may not be able to make physical change in world, there is a whole different side of revolution meant for young and inspired students like me. It is through spreading our ideas, concerns, and discussions within our communities that a real difference can be made. Meaningful conversations are a stepping-stone into a place where visions of the future are more foreseeable. You just need to get those conversations broadcasted!

To learn more about our project results, please check out our radio documentaries here:


Imogen Bysshe, Harbord School Toronto, Radiozilla 2014 youth participant

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