For Immediate Release
May 9, 2006 Toronto

"Citizens Take Community Safety into their Own Hands"

SPEAK UP, SPEAK OUT II COLLECTIVE COMMUNITY VOICES IN ACTION CONFERENCE

Thursday May 18th, 2006 at
Scadding Court Community Centre, (707 Dundas Street West)
from 5:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

Scadding Court Community Centre (SCCC), St. Stephen's Community House Youth Department and the Toronto District School Board present Speak Up, Speak Out II - Collective Community Voices in Action Conference. The event invites local residents from the downtown west Toronto area to discuss issues of safety, education, and violence among youth as well as other issues of common concern.

The conference is a follow-up to the highly successful Speak Up, Speak Out conference, held in 2004. It was presented in response to increasing violence and conflict issues in the community. Parents, youth, schools and social agencies worked together to examine and develop a series of recommendations. The recommendations were then used to help guide the work of community agencies in these areas.

"It's important that our local community service providers and school officials hear from the communities we serve", says Kevin Lee, Executive Director of SCCC. "Just because we haven't been listed as one of the high priority areas doesn't mean that there are not challenging issues facing this community."

"This type of event fosters civic involvement, builds self-esteem and develops skills among the community members that are involved in organizing the conference, particularly for youth", said Liane Regendanz, Executive Director of St. Stephen's Community House.

Speak Up, Speak Out II will focus on the accomplishments, outcomes, emerging trends and next steps to ensure that collectively we are addressing violence and safety issues in our community, especially youth-related issues. Childcare and a light dinner will be provided.

For more information, please contact
Karen Arthurton at St. Stephen's Community House
(416) 964-8747, ext. 241 or
Paula Green at

For more information about St. Stephen's Community House, please visit ststephenshouse.com



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