Youth conference opens Thursday
Wednesday, May 05, 2010 06:00 am
St. Albert will host more than 200 delegates later this week at a national conference on youth development.
The Thrive Canada National Conference on Positive Youth Development takes place this week at the St. Albert Inn and is designed to look at positives in youth development.
Patricia Howell-Blackmore, the organization’s director of communications, said the conference is an opportunity for people to come together and talk about positive things happening with youth.
“It is a lot of sharing from groups right across the county, coming to tell their community stories and some of the tools and strategies are highlighted as well.”
Howell-Blackmore said the organization started the conference as way to bring together lots of different groups like the RCMP, schools and sports groups that interact with young people.
“We try and bring as many of the different disciplines and the youth-serving organizations together.”
This is the sixth national conference for the organization, which has always looked to host the event in places where youth development is being taken seriously.
“We have kind of tried to go to where things were happening.”
She said the City of St. Albert’s adoption of the 40-asset philosophy was one of the things that attracted them to the community.
RCMP Insp. Warren Dosko said having such support from the city has been key to the 40-asset program.
“If mayor and council didn’t endorse it, we wouldn’t get near the same level of support from civic departments.”
Dosko believes the conference will be a good launching point to get more people involved in working with youth.
“It opens up doors for more people to get involved in asset developments.”
He said several schools and service groups have registered for the conference and the detachment’s entire community policing unit will be in attendance.
Though the 40-asset philosophy looks at youth issues broadly, the conference is going to be about people telling specific success stories, Dosko added.
“This workshop is all about what is being done. It is not about the theory, it is about the practical.”
Thursday’s keynote speaker is Vancouver Transit police chief Ward Clapham, who will discuss the benefits of positive ticketing. Friday’s closing keynote speech will come from Jennifer Valberg, with the group Otesha, a youth-centred group focusing on how consumer choices can bring about positive change.
Organizers will continue to take registrations until the conference opens Thursday morning. For more information visit www.thrivecanada.ca.