Important Conversations with Youth on Social Justice Issues



Empowering Youth Dialogue on Anti-Oppression: A Big Brothers Big Sisters Winnipeg & NYMAC Initiative

The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Winnipeg agency is developing online modules and activities focused on anti-oppression and anti-racism strategies for Big-Little matches. These conversations and resources are made possible through a grant from The Canadian Race Relations Foundation. As part of this initiative, they hosted an online event on March 14th inviting youth from BBBS agencies across Canada to engage in a critical conversation about the realities of living in a society marked by racial injustices and inequalities.

NYMAC’s role

The National Youth Mentoring Advisory Council (NYMAC) members, Abigail Edmond, Ashley Whiteman, Bree-Ann Jubinville, Keyla Ange Keza, Ryan Chan and Yasmine Elmi played a pivotal role in driving the discussions. They guided discussions on social justice issues and asked relevant questions to prompt dialogue on the specified topic. Their lived experiences and expertise in social justice issues brought depth to the dialogue, encouraging open and thought-provoking discussions.

Key Discussion Points:

The discussion was extensive and rich. We are sharing some of those key discussion points with you here.

  1. Navigating Cancel Culture: Addressing the challenges and fears of speaking out in today’s society, particularly in the face of potential backlash.
  2. Moments of Value-Driven Actions: Sharing personal narratives of times participants acted in alignment with their values, and the pride and impact stemming from those actions.
  3. Feeling like an Outsider: Delving into the experiences and emotions related to feeling alienated within groups that individuals identify with.
  4. Social Media Dynamics Today: Exploring the current state of social media engagement, including potential ‘click fatigue’ and the pressure to continuously share content.
  5. Changes Toward Equality and Inclusion: Discussing the societal changes over recent decades that have promoted equality and inclusion, comparing past and present scenarios.
  6. Personal Sense of Safety in Society: Delving into personal narratives about feeling alienated within groups they identify with and continuing the emotions and dynamics around these experiences.

Impact and outcome

This event not only offered NYMAC members a platform for social advocacy but also facilitated an essential conversation in the mentoring community. The discussions were more than just talks; they were steps towards meaningful progress in understanding and addressing racial dynamics in society. The conversations cultivated hope for today and future generations.

Event Takeaway:

By engaging youth in these vital conversations, this initiative contributed to developing a more informed, empathetic, and socially aware generation, laying the groundwork for a more inclusive future. It’s important we recognize the importance of having events such as this to be able to have insightful conversations in a safe space.

NYMAC - Abby Edmond

Abigail Edmond
NYMAC Member

Ashley Whiteman

Ashley Whiteman
NYMAC Member

NYMAC - Bree-Ann Jubinville

Bree-Ann Jubinville

NYMAC - Keyla Keza

Keyla Ange Keza
NYMAC Member

NYMAC - Ryan Chan

Ryan Chan
NYMAC Member

NYMAC - Yasmine Elmi

Yasmine Elmi
NYMAC Member

Learn more about our National Youth Mentoring Advisory Council including how to become a contributing member :

Mercedes-Benz Canada is the proud title sponsor of BBBSC’s National Youth Mentoring Advisory Council (NYMAC). This nationwide consortium of youth experts (aged 17-28) representing diverse backgrounds is helping to shape the future of mentorship in Canada.