Community Challenge

“What a great conference! I was really impressed by the energy of the students and I congratulate you on bringing out such a big group! The diversity of speakers and exhibitors really brought the message home of how youth can make a difference in their communities!”

– Rahul Mehta, Speaker at YMAD 2013

At YMAD, students will collaborate with high-school students from across Peel Region to create solution concepts for local and global issues. At the end of the day there will be a competition for the top concept! Challenge topics are listed below.

Diminish Deprivation | Poverty Alleviation | Jenn Davis

Not many people know that 1 in 7 people and 1 in 5 children right here in Peel Region are living in poverty. This statistic is even more extreme if you account for “at risk” communities as well.
Students will learn about poverty in Peel region and confront these issues through discussion and the development of possible concepts for a resolution.

Earth Ethos | Environmental Issues | Rahul Mehta

Now more than ever, the environment is an important focus of discussion. Climate change and environmental degradation are affecting communities worldwide. While awareness is growing, grassroots action in our communities is lagging behind.
Students will question the possibilities for change and develop innovative concepts for practical local contributions.

Destroy Discrimination | Diversity & Inclusion | Ken Dryfhout

We live in one of the most diverse communities in the world. Despite this, a variety of forms of discrimination and stigma exist that challenge people in our society. The future of inclusion is in the hands of youth who will be the policy makers of tomorrow.
Students will learn about inclusion and develop concepts to combat stereotypes and accept all kinds of people in  our community.

Mental Matters | Mental Health | Tammy Whelen

Mental illnesses will be directly experienced by 20% of Canadians in their lifetimes. Challenges from ranging from anxiety to bipolar disorder can have a huge impact on individuals, families and communities. However, many people who feel they are suffering from mental health issues will not seek help, in part due to  fear of public stigma.
Students will discuss mental health issues in Peel. They will then create concepts to challenge stigma and stereotypes amongst their peers.

Real Reservations | Aboriginal Issues | Cat Criger

Although indigenous communities have played a very important role in the history of Peel Region, issues that affect Ontario indigenous communities are surprisingly often absent from public discussion. Many of the issues from the other YMAD topic areas are compounded for indigenous populations.
Students will learn about indigenous issues in Ontario and be challenged to question the possibilities of how they can collaborate to affect change.

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During the Topic Talks and Community Challenge, there will also be an Educators Workshop. Click for details on the speaker.