Showing posts from May, 2012

Catch da Flava Radio May Highlights

From Frankenfish to Robofish! From Newsweek of Obama being the first gay president to Times' Breastfeeding cover of a hot model breastfeeding a 5 year old boy! From Sports to entertainment... Kobe being taken out by Kevin Durant's entourage, while Miley Cyrus claiming that "Sex is magical and cool" . We also had updates of the Occupy movements, the EI policy reforms, and Rob Ford and his budget and his weekly weigh in cancellation adventures. These are just a few of the month of May's whackiest topics on our youth radio! Joining us with our youth radio groups from the "CatchdaFlava headquarters" is Jared, Isaac, Omar, Tresvonne, William, Bubba Africa, Nicole, and of course myself, Jerry z! Always blessed with riotous energy and youth wisdom. Come join us at catchdaflava radio at Radio Regent! jerry z

May Last Friday Review

The May Last Friday was held at 246 Sackville Street and it was another fun evening with new talent. We had the Focus House Band kick off the night with what they do best as everyone ate Caribbean food. We also had Trevonne also known as 1 2 Tres read a poem he wrote. Trevonne is truly a Jack of all trades. He can produce beats, play the drums, the guitar and now write poetry? Wow! We had Isaac who is part of Catch da Flava Radio read a poem he wrote. Isaac was really nervous but as he said in his poem he, “came to finish what he started” and he did! I was so proud of him. Amazing talent from our youth in the Regent Park community! We had Sean Reyes perform who also came into the Radio Regent studios a few months ago on one of our Catch da Flava Youth Radio shows. You can check out his interview by visiting our archives on our website Sean has been through a lot after getting into a serious accident and having numerous brain surgeries. Music brings happines

Boyz 2 Men Blog May 24

Today proved to be quite an interesting day for the boys. They were able to get some much needed excercise, thanks to Tadios, for bringing his basketball. We met at Regent Park Focus at 4:30pm and went to the basketball court across the street. At around 5:15pm, the boys were hungry, so we went across the street to Noor's Pizza to have a bite to eat. Jerry was kind enough to pay out of his own pocket for the pizzas. The boys got to choose from pepperoni and vegetarian. After the pizzas, we went to Freshco for drinks. at around 6:00, the boys came back to Regent Park Focus;we were able to watch the video recap of the boys to men program that we made a week earlier. It was all in good fun as the boys were able to see themselves in the third person. The boys were so enthusiastic about the boys to men program that they suggested extending the program though the summer. After watching the video, the boys did 30 minutes of comic art. Theme of this program was a self portrait. Many of th

Boys 2 Men Basketball Diaries

Today was a very productive and fun day for the boys. Teamwork was the theme of today. 8 boys showed up to the group today. Although we thought that it was going to thunderstorm, we planned 4:30 pm to 5:15 pm, for basketball, hoping that the sky would be clear. We were very fortunate that there was no storm, and managed to play some basketball on the basketball court across the street from Regent Park Focus. We managed to play 2 games. Not only did this teach the kids about teamwork, they got some exercise and had fun doing it. The Regent Park Community Centre across the street was nice enough to lend us their basketball for the boys. During snack time at 5:15 pm, Jerry and James talked to the boys about gang mentality and hip-hop cultures. It was interesting to hear what the boys had to say. Most of them believe that gang violence has really subsided in Regent Park; they thought that they didn't see much gang activities in Regent Park. They also seemed to stress on the impo

Boyz 2 Men - "Tough Guise"

Today, those that were in the boys to men program, around 7, went to Duke of York Public School to play a game of tag. The 3 staff members first present included James and Jerry; Raul joined a bit later. It seemed that James was particularly good at this game because of his speed. A life of running away from bullies, and responsibilities certainly paid off. Even though the slides and the structures on the playground were off limits to people aged 12 and over, we went on anyway. We formed two groups, consisting of 4-5 players each; it was good exercise. After a while, we went back to Regent Park Focus to have some snacks. There were tuna fish and turkey sandwiches; ham was avoided because it wasn’t halal. While having snacks, we watched a 15-minute youtube video called "Tough Guise" by Jackson Katz. He talked about the racialization of the masculine imagine in the media, and how couloured men are represented as "overly masculine" to compensate for a lack of privile

Diva Girls Friday

 Daughter, student, friend, mother, patient and kind were only some of the words that were used by our Diva Girls to describe themselves. In a society where everything is on the go, and there can be so much stress and frustration it’s always nice to take a step back an re-evaluate yourself and your qualities, and that is exactly what this group of young women were able to do. On April 20, the Diva Girls were asked to draw an illustration as they see themselves today. Instantly a group of young artists were born and characters were brought to life. What was most remarkable is that every character was drawn with a smile on their face. They were then asked to write describing words about themselves and where they are in their lives right now. Girls were able to compare their drawings and see that we really aren’t that different from one another. We were all daughters, we all had siblings and we were all currently or had been students. Discussions were raised and we began to find out

Boyz 2 Men Day 4

Today, we had many things planned. We had a trust/obstacle game with the boys. The goal of the game is that the boys are supposed to go around obstacles with the instructions of their team members and obtain an item. If the participant were to touch any of the obstacles, he would have to start all over again. It became confusing when the boys were unsatisfied with the teams that were chosen. We didn’t allow them to pick their own teams because that would lead to some of the participants being left out. Jerry and I decided that we should talk to the kids about the topic of bullying. This was quite an interesting topic; first, we asked the boys what forms of bullying there were. We came to agree that there was physical bullying such as punching and kicking. There was a contemporary form of bullying called cyber bullying. It included the use of offensive remarks on web sites such as facebook, twitter, or the use of text messages. It’s remarkable that technology can bring such

Boyz 2 Men Day 3

Today was a very productive day for the boys. We had 5 boys show up for the workshop, but we had a lot of fun. We were able to get Dainty Smith to come and do a workshop with the boys; this was a workshop based on teaching the boys about the negative aspects that the mainstream media has on gender, deconstructing the status quo. At first, we played a game that Jerry brought to us. It involved passing an item around a circle, using only our legs. We first tried it with our eyes open. Then, we tried it with our eyes closed; each time the item was passed, it the participant was allowed to open his eyes and help with directions; this game taught the boys some leadership skills and teamwork sills. The game was fun; it took around 20 minutes. We had a brief introduction of ourselves, as we sat in a circle. Dainty started talking about the radicalized image given of masculinity in the media. Dainty asked each participant ‘what it takes to be a man’. One of the participants said the wor

Diva Girl’s Blog

Hey it’s Paige, George Brown Student, and as the school year winds down, (the kids aren’t the only ones counting!) we are also winding down here at Diva girls. The program will end for the year in a few months and start back up in September. Since the program is ending soon, we needed to start thinking of something to do for an end of the year project. There has been a really good turn out and new girls joining us, so to start out we did a name game to make sure we knew everybody’s name. What happened was participant one would say their name and do an action. Then participant number 2 would say their name do an action, and then say the person’s name that just went and their action. The pattern repeats itself until everybody goes. It’s a good way to remember because there is a lot of repeating and trying to remember. After that, we played another game to get girls to think about who they are and also learn interesting things about themselves. I gave everybody a piece of paper and ever

Boyz 2 Men Day 2

Today was a very productive day for the Boyz 2 Men program. The topic that we were trying to teach the youth was ‘chivalry’. This was a very important topic for the topic of ‘masculinity’. It was originally from the White Ribbon Campaign, at Ryerson University, and McClungs Magazine. Sub-topics included how chivalry should evolve rather than end. Because there were some chauvinistic undertones of the issue, the boys were taught how to act and how not to act. Placement student Paige was very helpful in the elaboration of the topic. After the lesson, the boys were given a quiz. Each time they answered the question correctly, they were given a candy. The boys literally ate it up. During break time, at 5:15, the boys had some snacks and juice. They were very intelligent and were able to retain much of the lesson taught to them. Afterward, the boys did some arts and crafts. Each of them made a collage with magazines, glue, and scissors given to them. The theme that the activi

Boyz 2 Men Day 1

Today was the first day of the Boyz 2 Men program. Unfortunately, we only had one staff member present. The boys who showed up included Fataltal, Natnael, Tadios, Claude, Mousbah, Yacin, Canaan, and Kayden. We did a brief introduction exercise with the boys. We had a bag of skittles; each youth had 2 candies. The rule of the activity is that each colour represented something that the boys were to talk about: Lime represented favorite movie; grape was favorite place, lemon was favorite person; strawberry was favorite food, and orange was the wild card. The boys loved the part when they got to eat the candy. We were able to play a game called acrostics; this is a game in which you choose a person, and use the letters in their name to make a description of the person. Each boy was supposed to pick a male role model and use acrostics to describe him. We lost time of track when we were doing this activity because there was a lot of side talk that was going on. Many interesting c

My Experience at Focus as an Intern from Ireland!

Hi everyone, My name is Maria and I've come to Toronto all the way from Ireland to work with Regent Park Focus for seven weeks as part of a cultural and training program. I'm into my second week of being in Toronto and working in Regent Park Focus. So far, I'm enjoying every minute of my time in Canada and of course working in Focus. I should maybe explain a little about how I ended up being here in Toronto and working for Focus. Back home in Ireland, I applied for a nineteen week program called, Springboard. The course name is 'Wider Horizons'. It's a program which is open to anyone interested in furthering their knowledge and experience. It offers the chance for a person to gain the crucial experience they need to hopefully be able to eventually have a career in an area of work which they love. Mine being film production, photography, editing & music. I got a perfect placement in terms of all those things, since Focus offers them all and more. There we