PNSM is a highly successful project of The Students Commission, a national non-profit and registered charitable organization. The first phase of PNSM was a partner project between The Students Commission, the Pape Adolescence Resource Centre and Covenant House Toronto. With the support of our partners and the various funding partners this project has reached more than 1000 Toronto youth – either in weekly discussion groups or as recipients of the young men’s workshops. The group has flourished and the individuals have flourished creating positive change in the city. Members now work for other community youth organizations, others are in the Toronto Youth Cabinet, including in positions on the executive, others advise the Mayor and the Chief of Police on a regular basis. One participant is completing a year long program with Katimavik, a national youth exchange program, several are in full time post-secondary studies, and others are holding down their first jobs. Yet another has received the Street Level Advocacy Award from the City of Toronto.
“We are a group of inner-city youth from Toronto. We come from various backgrounds, but have all challenged adversity to become who we are today. We are all young people who have faced and currently facing significant challenges such as struggling to stay in or return to school, living in care or custody, living on the street or in shelters. Individually we have become leaders in our communities, and together we exist as PNSM. We are comprised of former youth in care, shelter and homeless youth and former young offenders between the ages of 16 – 24. We have toured the road of destruction and chosen to break the cycle. We are former negative youth leaders who become positive role models. Walk With Me is only one example of what we are doing to address the serious issues facing Toronto’s young people.”