The Power of Labels

I remember that summer before starting Grade 9 really well. My older sisters coached me on what I could expect. I even bought my first pair of Vans to replace my usual Nike Air runners. I was going to be in high school now... a whole new start.

I was hoping for a new start in many more ways than just some wardrobe choices. Elementary school for me included more than the average amount of visits to the Principal’s office and discipline. I had a number of teacher’s who didn’t really know what to do with me.  My Grade 8 teacher definitely belonged on that list.

Canada's Violent Youth Culture

Here’s a clip from Bowling for Columbine, Michael Moore’s Oscar winning documentary. It asks the question of why Canada doesn’t have the amount of gun violence as the United States.  You can watch it in its entirety if you wish but the first 45 seconds is what I would like to focus on.

Ken's Street Journey: Brad and Scott

4 summers ago I decided to hitchhike out to Vancouver without the benefit of very much money.  No hostels or motels.  Perhaps the explanation for why will be a future blog. I journalled like mad during the journey and would post snippets in a group that I created for the occasion on Facebook, you can find that here

Thought today I would share one of those journal entries from when I was in Regina for a little entertainment.

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I Love You Man

One of the greatest things I get to do with The Dam is meet with youth one on one. When I am mentoring a youth I try to meet with them once a week for about an hour. It can take time for a teen to become comfortable with the arrangement.  I’m pretty used to getting stood up, particularly at the beginning, I think because many of us have some fear of getting close to someone and being vulnerable and honest, and mentoring at its best draws that out.

Honour Yourself

Last night I found out that a youth I’ve known for a while is one half Aboriginal Canadian.  His mother is from the Mi’kmaq First Nation people. I told him how cool I thought that was, but he was quick to joke, “But, I don’t huff gas or anything.” I knew he was ‘joking’ but I looked at him very seriously and said, “I never would have thought you did. That would never have crossed my mind. I want you to know that I honour the First People of Canada.” I wanted him to hear that...

The Heart of A True Champion

Tim Thomas was a champion long before he raised the Stanley Cup on Wednesday night in Vancouver.  He wasn’t a champion because of any trophy he’d won or any of the previous accolades, awards or honours he had been rewarded.  Being a true champion is something that can never be handed to you in the form of a cup, plate, medal or trophy.  It is something that has to do with WHO YOU ARE, it is about character.

Relationships and Power Balance

A friend of mine wanted advice about his relationship. His girlfriend and he had a number of issues that had caused an on again/off again type of scenario over a number of years. At this moment they were broken up, she had broken his trust and he was wondering if he should give her another chance.

Spotlight: Playing for Change - Music Around The World

Is There Life In Your Eyes?

The summer after Grade 10 I started dating a Turkish girl. She didn’t know this, but I was absolutely mesmerized by her.  I thought that she was so beautiful and I couldn’t believe that she was interested in me. I had spent so much of my life being the chubby kid who got called ‘friend’ by the girls quite a bit.  Now, in a relationship with this gorgeous girl, I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. I was very shy with my body (embarrassed really, I still saw myself as the fat kid).

Lauryn Hill - I Find It Hard To Say (Rebel)

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