Tools for Change To Host Activist Workshop Series

TORONTO, Sept. 23, 2011 /CNW/ - The Tools for Change program has launched its 2011/2012 workshop series. This year's series consists of 16 workshops designed to provide Torontonians with the skills they need to advocate for social, economic, and environmental justice.

Ranging from three hours to a day in length, workshop topics include media strategy, facilitation, scouting, organizing rallies and actions, and conflict resolution. A complete list of this year's workshops is online at: http://www.toolsforchange.net/events/  

"Exorbitant student debt.  Cuts to critical public services.  Ongoing war. Climate change. It's completely overwhelming to students and young people who don't know how to channel their concern and altruism into concrete action," says Tools for Change co-founder and University of Toronto Ontario Public Interest Research Group (OPIRG) coordinator, Clare O'Connor. "Our workshops provide an opportunity for students to connect with like-minded people and learn practical skills for change."

"A healthy society and environment depend upon active and effective civic engagement," says David Sone, co-founder of Tools for Change and a campaigner with Earthroots. "Tools for Change is a pathway that helps people connect with mentors and peers and take steps to improve the world around them." 

"Colleges and universities are great at teaching us what's wrong with the world, but there are very few programs that teach the skills we need to help us create solutions," says Jessica Bell, Tools for Change co-founder. "Tools for Change helps people solve problems, and not just complain about them."

Workshops are held in accessible classrooms at the University of Toronto, St George Campus.  Participants are asked to donate $10-$20 to attend the workshop, and no one is turned away for lack of funds. 

Tools for Change is a project of OPIRG Toronto and Earthroots.  OPIRG Toronto is a volunteer-based group at the University of Toronto, with a mandate for action, education, and research on environmental and social justice issues.  Earthroots protects Ontario's wild places and watersheds by combining powerful grassroots campaigns with effective research and educational programs.

Over 300 people attended the 15 workshops Tools for Change hosted during its first year of operation in 2010/2011.

For more information go to toolsforchange.net.

SOURCE University of Toronto Students' Union

For further information:

Jessica Bell
Tools.change@gmail.com, 647 772 8770, 416 323 4761

Clare O'Connor
opirg.toronto@utoronto.ca, 416 978 7770

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University of Toronto Students' Union

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