United Way: Youth, Community & Art

We have a long and proud relationship with United Way Greater Toronto, donating over a $1,000,000.00. Some of our contributions are directed to specific programs and services such as the 519 Church Street Community Centre, Toronto Rent Bank and The Remix Project which provides at-risk youth access to innovative, impactful arts programming to build their talents in the arts and create meaningful careers for themselves. Through this support, 118 young people have built their talents in the arts and created meaningful lives and careers for themselves.

The 519 Church Community Centre 
The 519 Church Community Centre was able to conduct the Community-Led Programs Review. The purpose of the project was to better understand and integrate staff-led and community-led initiatives and find effective ways to provide more support to the community groups that operate out of The 519. That three-year review ensured a broad spectrum of responsive, expandable and flexible programming to LGBTQ+ communities, and to the greater Church–Wellesley neighbourhood. The review process provided better connection among the many community groups and programs operating out of the Centre, allowing for more robust service delivery and community-building opportunities.

Creative Arts Stream
The support of the K.M. Hunter Charitable Foundation was critical to the success of the Creative Arts Stream. Since 2006, due to popularity, the stream has grown into two additional streams: the Art of Photography and the City Life Film Program. Graduates of the Creative Arts Stream had also gained valuable work experience by participating in Remix’s social enterprise projects.

The Remix Project
Our support enabled Remix to increase the number of participants of the Creative Arts Stream from 20 in 2006 to 50 youth in 2011. In 2012, 20 youth worked within the general Creative Arts stream, 10 youth participated in the City Life Film Project and 20 youth studied within the Arts of Photography program. The Creative ArtsStream’s focus was creative writing, journalism, graphic design, and fine art. By offering a range of training sessions and workshops led by well-known artists and Remix’s program leaders, as well as encouraging important industry networking, the stream was able to offer educational and professional experiences in a real-world setting. Graduates have gone on to do everything from graphic design for rap artist Drake to curating gallery shows to designing for well-known clothing label French Connection and Canadian singer and songwriter Jessie Reyez also participated in the project four years ago and today is touring the USA with her show.