The 2013 Mayor's Community Safety & Crime Prevention Awards honoured six individuals and groups at City Hall on Nov. 4, 2013. The four Outstanding Community Projects received $1,000 from their award sponsors to reinvest in community safety initiatives. The awards are presented in conjunction with Ontario's Crime Prevention Week.
Derek Khani is being recognized for his commitment to community building through the arts. Khani, a multi-disciplinary arts educator, works with at-risk populations, providing a positive outlet and a creative approach to rehabilitation and recovery. Khani has built many strong community partnerships, and participated in numerous projects including Honouring our Stories, a photo voice project documenting the lives of Indigenous students from their own perspective, and the Circle of Wellness, a project to reduce mental health-related stigmas through the arts.
Sponsor: Shout Media
Watch the Community Hero Award Video
Allison Lamb is relatively new to Thunder Bay, but has tirelessly dedicated herself to community safety and helping victims of trauma. Lamb works as a parole officer with the Ministry of Community Safety & Correctional Services in Thunder Bay, and volunteers with Thunder Bay and Area Victim Services. In addition, Lamb is involved with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Thunder Bay’s Go Girls Thunder Bay program, acting as a mentor for girls aged 12 to 14 and promoting healthy bodies and minds.
Sponsor: Métis Nation of OntarioWatch the Young Leader Award Video
Roots to Harvest builds community safety and participation in a number of inspiring ways. The organization maintains the Roots to Harvest Garden at the corner of Algoma and Cornwall streets, which has developed into a vibrant public space. Roots to Harvest helps supply local businesses with fresh food, and provides meaningful employment opportunities to marginalized youth, helping them gain valuable skills and grow through their interactions with local leaders, businesses and organizations. Roots to Harvest has also partnered and collaborated with many local crime prevention groups including the Thunder Bay Crime Prevention Council, Evergreen A United Neighbourhood, and the Thunder Bay Food Strategy.
Sponsor: Wasaya Airways
Watch the Outstanding Community Project Video
Kizhaay Anishinaabe Niin Program (I am a Kind Man) encourages men and boys to speak out and stand up against all forms of violence and abuse against women. The program is delivered through the Indian Friendship Centre and based on a holistically cultural model; it reminds us all that violence has never been an acceptable part of Indigenous culture. Kizhaay Anishinaabe Niin deals directly with the perpetrators of violence and abuse against women, and the program’s goals include inspiring men and boys to engage other men to get involved and stop abuse, offering a safe environment where men can feel confident to express themselves positively, and increasing cultural pride to promote healthy role modelling in the community.
Sponsor: Thunder Bay Police Services Board
Pride Central works to end discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity through tireless advocacy, education and awareness. Pride Central reaches out to the Lakehead University community, as well as Thunder Bay as a whole, through awareness campaigns, discussion groups, educational workshops, and special events such as the week-long celebration Pride in the North. Services are available to on- and off-campus individuals, and community organizations. For example, Pride Central and the Catholic Family Development Centre are together offering a support group for parents of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning (LGBTQ) children, while Pride Central’s partnership with St. John Evangelist Church has seen the two groups deliver the Integrity program, a support group for Anglican LGBTQ people and their friends.
Sponsor: Simpson Street BIA
We Stand Up! addresses bullying, racism, social injustice and world hunger at a local level. The first We Stand Up! Conference – organized by Thunder Bay high school students – took place at the Thunder Bay Community Auditorium on May 6, 2013, and brought 1,400 students together to make a pledge to make a difference. Since then, the group has continued to work for change through various community-minded projects, such as raising funds and awareness for clean water initiatives in African communities, running a food drive for Shelter House, to hosting in-school events to help engage hard-to-reach youth. The students continue to develop partnerships in the City and region to ensure the We Stand Up! Conference continues as a regular event.
Sponsor: Brook McIlroy
Watch the Outstanding Community Project Video