Rethinking Relationships: A Model for Education, Public Health and Community Sectors

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With funding from the Ontario Women’s Directorate, the primary aim of this project was to develop a versatile and comprehensive framework for mentoring youth between the ages of 11-14 to address various forms of violence and promote healthy and equal relationships and social spaces in ways that are collaborative, creative, and youth-centered.  A framework was developed to provide adults working with youth in diverse institutional and community settings and sectors with promising practice guidelines and strategies for mentoring youth using an approach that is participatory and intersectional.

This main objective reflects our understanding that it is important to develop meaningful and empowering, yet flexible, mentoring strategies for engaging both male and female youth from diverse communities in the work of challenging violence and of fostering healthier, more equitable, patterns of social interrelationships. It is important to develop mentoring strategies that respond to the diversity and specificity of youth experiences, social contexts, and identities, and that inclusively engage the knowledge and direct participation of youth. The mentoring framework created with this initiative was informed by a theoretical foundation of intersectionality and by a participatory action methodology. This mentoring model provides best practices, strategies, and resources that enable youth and adults to work in partnership to design, implement, and evaluate initiatives that engage youth in the important work of examining and challenging the different forms of violence, inequalities, and exclusions in their everyday lives and promoting healthy more equal relationships and social spaces.

This project concluded with a conference in London, Ontario which drew on local knowledge to identify approaches to mentoring youth between the ages of 11-14 that address various forms of violence and promote healthy and equal relationships.  Project Team: H. Berman, P. Jaffe, B. MacQuarrie, R. Hughes, Y. Hussain, M. Pajot,  S. Abdelwahab.

Click here for more information about the conference.

Resources developed for this grant include:

Pajot, M. (2009). Rethinking relationships: Engaging youth & connecting communities: Resource guide. London, Canada: Centre for Research and Education on Violence against Women and Children.

Pajot, M. (2009). Vivre sainement nos relations: S’engager comme jeunes et comme collectivité, un guide de ressources. London, Canada: Centre for Research and Education on Violence against Women and Children.