Indie Game Dev Program - Its Back!

RPF Indie Game Dev Catalyst Club
After a break at the end of the summer, the Catalyst Club is back and on a year long journey.
For the returning youth, the first month of the year long program has been a time to wrap up on their summer projects while eyeing year long projects to start working on.  They're not beginners anymore, their ambitions have grown and they are building the courage (and skillsets) to start creating their dream games.
For the new faces, the first month has been a challenging series of mountains to climb, building their programming and design profeciencies while also working through tough questions of choice like "what do you want to create?".  Having reached the summit of basic skill development, they are now eyeing first projects to begin working on and/or additional skill set to acquire.
Stay tuned to hear about the projects being developed and workshops being offered.
By:  Fernando Restituto
Fernando Restituto - Map Maker
Toronto, Onta…

Catch da Flava Radio - ADHD Drugs, Anxiety and Nootropics

Radio Blog - Oct 17, 2017​

For Catch da Flava’s October 17th show, host Diamond Bailey held a panel discussion about post-secondary students reaching for ADHD drugs and other stimulants to achieve academic success. With students stressed and frazzled, they have turned to studying with the aid of prescription pills that are not necessarily their own.​

With 65 per cent of students surveyed by the Center of innovation for campus Mental Health saying that they experienced overwhelming anxiety in the last year, an increase from 57 per cent in 2013, we agreed that the increased stress students faced should encourage them to look to other coping mechanisms rather than such a dangerous alternative.​

Additionally, we discussed the topic of Nootropics also known as “smart drugs.” They are cognitive enhancers and are yet to be legal, so we wondered whether the government should allow it to be legally sold as it is illegal to sell in Canada. ​

Accordingly, we talked about the many side ef…

Powerful by Nature - Blog 2

Date: Oct 16, 2017

Hosts : Moya & Victoria

Guests : Anny, Shadae, & Sherry

Topic : Teen Pregnancy & Stigma

This week Moya and Victoria shed some light on teen pregnancy and the stigma that young parents deal with on the day to day. Moya and Victoria welcome the rest of the PowerfulXNature team to the show which includes: Anny and Shadae; and Sherry the Youth Leadership Program lead at Jessie’s Centre ; who all share experiences throughout the show about pregnancy and parenting as a youth and the stigma that they have experienced. For the second half, our hosts lead a conversation on how the media can portray teen parents in a negative way and the impact that this can have. Being shamed for decisions that you’ve made and being stigmatized makes navigating the world very difficult. We also discuss how the team is changing the dialogue through the Community Education Program at Jessie’s Centre; and how Shadae through her blog, She's Too Young To Mom …

Divas Girls Group - "This is Me"

Divas Group

October 6th 2017

Starting off for the month of October the Divas shared their “This Is Me” poems that they wrote the previous week. Many of the poems were inspiring and the girls spoke highly of themselves. The Canvas ladies, Londzo and Maymuna had an activity prepared that involved digging skin deep. The Divas were required to analyze their meaning of beautiful then study a few pictures of racial stereotypes and moved forward in having a discussion on the impact of these negative stereotypes. They even shared their own experience of being stereotyped. After a 15-minute break the Divas regrouped and watched a video about colorism then were to reflect on how they felt about the video. A lot of the girls had great insight on how they felt about the video. Lastly, the Divas wrapped up the rest of the evening with writing in their journals. Next week, there will be a lot more exciting activities for the Diva girls.

By: Alexis Augustine

Catch da Flava - Mental Health Awareness Week

For our Catch da Flava Youth Radio show on October 2nd, 2017 we centred the show on mental health concerns as it is mental health awareness week. We started the conversation with covering the recent news on 17-year-old teenager Noah Irvine and his quest to bring more awareness and resources to mental health concerns to the Canadian government. Noah was only five years old when his mother passed away from suicide. Then three years ago when Noah was fifteen, his father passed away from a drug overdose. Noah believes it could have been prevented if the government had provided more resources for mental health.

He started off writing to every member of Parliament, then later was able to meet with the Federal Minister of Health, and just recently had a scheduled meeting with the Prime Minister, scheduled for Wednesday morning. Sharing this story, we also provided some audio clips of the story being covered by local media outlets to highlight how much public attention young Noah i…

Powerful by Nature - Blog 1

Date: Sep 29, 2017

Hosts: Brianne & Shadae

Guests : Moya, Victoria (PowerfulXNature), Faith Hatchet, Hodan Osman, Monika Obermeier, & Sherry Rutter

Topic : Who is Powerful by Nature & Jessie’s?

This week, Powerful X Nature youth radio show debuts on the air. Our hosts, Brianne and Shadae introduce the Powerful X Nature team and lead a conversation to learn more about services and support offered at Jessie’s Centre.

In the first part of the show you meet the PowerfulXNature team, consisting of 5 participants who have been actively involved in our Community Education Program and who share a commonality; they’re all YOUNG PARENTS.

In the second part of the show, our hosts welcome staff from Jessie’s; Sherry, the Youth Leadership Program Lead; Hodan a Counsellor/Case Manager; Monika, the Parent Child Centre Lead; and Faith a Registered Nurse, who oversees the Health Program. This segment starts with a brief her story of Jessie’s Centre. Each guest then provides i…

Catch da Flava - Racism in the Education System

For our September 26th show, Catch da Flava explored the topic of racism in the education system, and how coming back to school affects students. For our first half, our co-host Diamond led the discussion on racism in school. She brought up a recent event in Toronto hosted by Ontario’s Anti-Racism Directorate, which invited 30 Youth from across Ontario who witnessed or experienced racism, and how they participated in an engagement session. The event was held in order to bring a spotlight to the everyday struggles that students face, and to give legitimacy to the experiences that they youth face. Ontario’s Minister of Children and Youth Services Michael Coteau was present to give remarks before the start of the event, as well as the Minister Responsible for Anti-Racism. With the introduction of this topic, Diamond and another co-host, Tyger, discussed their personal experience in dealing with racism. Diamond discussed her general experiences as a young Black girl in the schoo…