Showing posts from February, 2019

Diva Girls' Blog Post - February 15th (Photography)

This session the girls were given a presentation about photography where they learned about lighting and perspective. The host, Dawit showed the girls the importance of lighting and composition in terms of photography while also offering examples of different kinds. He also taught the girls about the purpose of photography and why it is so important. The girls were really excited to start photographing and even brainstormed a couple of things they could photograph and some themes they could centre it around. They will start taking pictures in the following weeks, these will be part of the showcase exhibit that will occur later on in the program. Amna Quaid Azam

The Regent Park Focus audio-arts program is back!

Since February 14th, RPF has been offering free access to our fantastic digital music recording studios. Youth community members (ages 15 - 30) can come and use our Logic Pro X-equipped work stations for audio projects or sign up for training in composition, keyboard skills and basic recording technique. Classes run weekly, Monday and Thursday afternoons. So far, participants have been experimenting with songwriting, beat-making and immersing themselves in the amazing world of computer-based recording. If you or someone you know is interested in participating in the program, please contact David Wall at: Or call 416 863 1074

Catch da Flava youth radio February 19th - School Experiences

For the February 19th live show of the Catch da Flava youth radio program, our hosts Kylie, Thalia, and Meredith explored issues that youth experience in schools that can affect mental, physical, and social health and wellness. We focused mainly on high school issues and experiences, but we did briefly touch on some issues experienced in earlier school years also. All of us had moved to a different school at some point during our high school years, so we started our discussion off with a comparison of the different experiences between the different schools we attended, such as the differences between public school, Catholic school, and private or specialized schools. All three of us felt that in our experiences with Catholic schools, religion played a very large part in all aspects of education and general student life, and quite frequently it crossed the line of being relied on and used as reasoning for decision-making far too often. We also discussed school uniforms and dress co

Diva Girls' Blog Post - February 11th (UofT Collaboration)

Regent Park Focus is partnering with the Youth, Arts, and Engagement Program at the University of Toronto to produce a media product that is based on the community. This is the third session.  This session was focused on creating groups. The students from UofT were put into groups beforehand by their professor, Aditi, and given topics. After having the option of switching topics and groups they were given the job of trying to get the young women from focus interested enough in their topic to join their group. After the girls were put into their groups they were greeted by Alexa Mills, an editor from the Washington City Paper who talked to them about journalism and how multiple individuals can tell the same story differently. She read through a few articles and then lead an interviewing activity. For this activity the groups were to pick one interviewee, the other members were the interviewers. They were to create two questions for the interviewee and think of how th

Diva Girls' Blog Post - February 8th, 2019 (Art Workshop)

This session, the girls worked with the guest artist, Karma, to complete their pieces from the last art session. Karma then gave the girls the option of creating paper mache cups and other pieces, most of the girls continued working on their tile piece, some started another one. Karma taught the girls about different techniques they could use to create their pieces while also telling the girls about how much waste there is on the planet and the length of time it takes for it to decompose. The girls then brainstormed ways they can take items they would normally get rid of and find other uses instead of throwing it out.   This was Karma's final visit, she was kind enough to leave some supplies with us to use for future projects with the girls. The girls left the session with more of an understanding of waste and how much of it humans create. Amna Quaid Azam

Diva Girls' Blog Post - February 4th, 2019 (UofT Collaboration)

Regent Park Focus is partnering with the Youth, Arts, and Engagement Program at the University of Toronto to produce a media product that is based on the community. This is the second session. This session the girls offered a tour to the students and staff at UofT. They took them to places they usually hang out at, these being the Regent Park Community Centre and Daniels Spectrum. They then showed the group parts of the community that had been revitalized and explained how it now works in the community.                                                                             After returning back to focus, they worked on an ice breaker. This ice breaker was one where the group had to create a paper airplane, write their names and 2 questions they had for the finder. They then threw it around in the room and had to search for the owner of the plane and answer the question.                               Aditi, the professor of the program, then talked about the evolution

Diva Girls' Blog Post - February 1st (Community and MPP)

Today we are learning practical ways to address and combat issues in our community! We started by bringing up our concerns in the neighbourhood like combating January snow storms, or what our recreational environments are going to look like in the summer. Next, we learned about the role and responsibility of our local MPP, Suze Morison, and discussed our power as constituents.  We talked about how to prepare for a constituency meeting, like being up to date on public policies and how the MPP can help.  We even talked about organizing a constituency meeting as a group in the future.  The girls are very aware of what happens in their neighbourhood and they are passionate about making sure their voices are heard.  Today was about learning practical and impactful ways to use our voices for our community. Melodie M.

Little Divas girls program - December 14th & 21st

For the last two sessions of the Little Divas girls' program in December 2018, we began exploring the theme "love is love". We started into this theme by discussing the question "what is normal?" We thought "normal" is what people expect us to be or do, or what usually happens in a given situation. We also talked about what it means or feels like to not be normal - being weird or different, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, as long as it isn't hurting anyone! We went further into the concept of "normal" and thought about who decides what is "normal" and what is not, and where we get those ideas from. We talked about how the idea of "normal" is different for everyone, and in fact it's really just made up and perpetuated by people with some sort of power or influence in our society. That's also why the idea of what is "normal" is often different in different cultures and different parts of the wo

Music Production - March 4th

    I am still getting used to the students schedule here. There are some familiar faces that I am learning but every now and then someone will come in who I've never met. Today I had the pleasure of meeting a new student who spent time talking with me about her experiences in the city recording music. Unfortunately it hasn't all been easy. We began by introducing ourselves, and she asked about my history as a musician and what experience I had recording music, and producing.     I asked her about her journey as a musician and she sighed and then told me that's it's been hard. She described her trials and tribulations when it came to finding a qualified producer to work with who sees her as an artist first, not a woman. I could tell how passionate this student is because of how emotional she got when describing how hard it's been for her to find someone to work with. She described going from one "producer" to another and just meeting people who weren'