AMP January News

AMP Welcomes New Staff Member

Dayna Hobbs – AMP Key Contact (North Region)
Dayna Hobbs comes to the Alberta Mentoring Partnership from Ontario where she completed her education in teaching and social work. Her past experiences include various positions within elementary and secondary schools as a child protection worker and counsellor working with children, youth and their families. Dayna currently works part-time as a Site-Based Mentoring Coordinator with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Grande Prairie and Area. She is a strong believer in the impact of mentoring programs having volunteered in the past as an In-School Mentor and working closely with at-risk youth in the community.

Call for Presenters

November 5 – 7, 2013
Banff Centre, Banff, Alberta

It’s About Inspiring Lives
NOVEMBER 5 – 7, 2013
Deadline for submissions: February 22, 2013
Overview of Symposium
This symposium will celebrate 100 years of mentoring across Canada by showcasing innovative mentoring partnerships, practices, programs and research and by setting the stage for mentoring in the future. The event will strive to advance the unique contributions of mentoring to the well‑being of children and youth, volunteer mentors and communities.
The event is co-hosted by Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada (BBBSC) and The Alberta Mentoring Partnership (AMP).
Call for Presentations
The National Mentoring Symposium Program Committee is inviting abstracts featuring evidence or promising practices relevant to the four presentation themes listed below. Presentations are not limited to academic research. Practice and community based-innovations, as well as youth presentations are encouraged. Presentations can be presented as part of the concurrent sessions or cracker barrel.
Cracker Barrel Presentations
A cracker barrel session allows multiple presentations in the same room. Each presenter has ten to fifteen (10-15) minutes to describe their work to a group of 15-20 participants at a table. After each 10-15 minute presentation, the participants will be asked to move to another presenter. The presenters remain at the same table in the room and present to the next round of participants.
There is no audio/visual equipment used during Cracker Barrel presentations, but presenters are encouraged to bring table-top displays and handouts..
Presentation Streams
There are four presentation streams. Please indicate which of the four streams your presentation fits within. Innovative Partnerships to Support Mentoring
Mentee and Mentor Perspectives
Mentoring with special populations or in special settings
Tools, Resources and Training
Speaker Travel, Accommodation and Registration Fees
If selected, all presenters and their accompanying team members/colleagues will be responsible for costs related to travel, accommodation and symposium registration fees.
Click here to fill out a call for presentations form.

LINKages Continues to Prove its Success

Storytelling, laughter and smiles filled the hall at the Colonel Belcher care facility two weeks ago when Western Canada High School (WCHS) students stopped by to visit their senior friends.
The group gathers every week at the care facility for different activities, including board games and stories, through LINKages, a Husky-supported program.
According to LINKages Executive Director, Debra Armstrong, the program aims to minimize the ageism that exists in today’s culture, and to build healthy, meaningful relationships that are “heart warming.”
“The laughter is good for the seniors who benefit from the connection and energy that comes from the young people,” Debra says. “It also teaches young kids how to get involved in their community, how to give back. They are learning about civic engagement.”
Although the program exists to educate Calgary’s future leaders about subjects such as aging, communication and community involvement, it is clear that the students are simply having fun and bonding with their senior friends.
Grade 12 student Paulina Podgamy joined the program after hearing about her friend’s experiences, however it was when she met her senior friend Eileen McLean, that she really understood how remarkable LINKages is.
“Some elders here have Alzheimer’s, yet they remember your name. They remember what you told them,” Paulina says. “It really helps our senior friends feel more involved.”
Debra agreed, stating that, “seniors need that social connectivity.” She explained that before LINKages events, the seniors line up outside the hall in excitement to greet their friends. Oftentimes these are the only visitors they will get during the week.
At 93 years old, Aimos Wilkins says he is happy to be involved with LINKages, “I enjoy meeting the young people, finding out where they come from, and finding out what they are interested in. Our cultures are miles apart due to our age; we have a life of learning and experience that they haven’t yet experienced.”
Aimos is a World War II veteran, and his student friend Megan Liang says that the stories he has shared has been invaluable in shaping her understanding of the seniors at Colonel Belcher.
Program coordinator, Barb Greig says the relationships built through the program are amazing, “Some students take a bus and a train and a bus to get here, and that takes a lot of effort.”
Debra says, “We have witnessed in the last three years triple the amount of requests than we can accommodate. Almost 100 kids from WCH applied, and we could only take 30.”
Growing interest in the program has pushed coordinators to seek ways to accommodate more participants. Debra says that it is through contributions like Husky’s that positive outcomes are possible.

LINKages Society of Alberta is a Calgary-based nonprofit organization that provides programs and services to encourage young people to reach out to seniors in thoughtful and meaningful ways. Our expertise with inter-generational practices and programs (IGPs) has allowed for great success in the bringing together of generations. Learn more:

Nominations Needed for the 2013 Aboriginal Youth Achievement Awards

The 2013 Aboriginal Youth Achievement Awards is continuing to look for nominees. The award ceremony will be held on March 8, 2013 at the Winspear Centre in Edmonton. Nominations are needed for Aboriginal young achievers (between 10 and 30 years old) in six different categories. Anyone from the community can nominate a deserving candidate. Nominations are due Jan 31, 2013. Information about the six nomination categories, and how you can nominate someone you know can be found here.

2013 Winter Walk Day

The weather in Alberta might get cold in the winter, but SHAPE (Safe Healthy Active People Everywhere) as well as a variety of communities across the province will be participating in the annual winter walk on Feb 6, 2013.  This event has been organized to help promote the benefits that walking brings to our health, our environment, and our community. To find out more information about the Winter Walk Day, including a of registered participants, and how your organization can register for the even please visit the Winter Walk Day website.
The Calgary Foundation Community Grants

The Calgary Foundation’s Community Grants Program promotes a healthy, vibrant community that embraces diversity and supports all of its members.  
The average size Community Grant over the past few years has been approximately $30,000 – although some are larger and some are smaller. Contact Grants staff to explore larger amounts that might be available for collaborative projects, or to inquire about smaller amounts for organizational development.

Grant applications are due on Feb 15, and September 10. To apply for a Grant with The Calgary Foundation please visit their website.

The Canadian Active Partnership Parent Survey

The Canadian Active After School Partnership wants to better understand how children between 5 and 17 years of age spend their time after school in the 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm time period. They’re interested in learning how children spend their time after school; what parents think about after school programs that their children are now in; and what children who are not in after school programming do during this time. Anyone who is a parent or caregiver to child between the ages of 5 and 17 is encouraged to complete the survey that is available online here. As a thank survey participants can opt in and enter their email address into a draw for one of three $150 gift certificates at Sport Chek.

Engaging Talk About Science at Mount Royal University with Bob McDonald
What a great opportunity for Mentee’s and Mentor’s in Calgary and surrounding areas! This free event is perfect for any children or youth with an interest in science.

Thank You!

The Alberta Mentoring Partnership would like to thank the Rotary Club of Calgary Crowchild Urban Spirits for the opportunity to present at their weekly meeting on January 29th, 2013. Gabriel Imbert-Boyd is one of the first Rotarian mentors in the Rotary Tom Jackson Stay in School initiative. This Rotary Club is very passionate about supporting youth in and around the Calgary area.
To find out more about this club please visit their website.

Club President, Jordan Katz (L) & Club Secretary, Gabriel Imbert-Boyd (R)