The summer is often a time when most people look forward to or hate because of the clash of positives and negatives that come with it. That can be said for a lot of communities, but it’s Toronto that’s the focus right now. Having grown up in a relatively rough neighbourhood for the majority of my life, I know what it’s like for a region to try to change their image for the betterment of the surrounding community and the residents who are willing to shift the culture that doesn’t reflect a negative portrayal. Jane-Finch is an area that has seen its fair share of negative connotations (even to this day), and the community there has been trying to re-establish the image that’s perceived by the masses. Of course, it doesn’t happen overnight, but it does take the efforts of the people to make that happen, and although JnF is not necessarily my community, I’m understanding of the fact that it’s frustrating to rebuild an image of overall appeal that many convince themselves that there’s no possible way of doing so.
A big factor in helping change for the better is the impact of the Arts, in all mediums. It’s a reason why I’m supporting the Unplugged Festival, because the organization (Just BGRAPHIC) has provided a numerous amount of examples when it comes to providing for the youth who seem to be unnecessarily overlooked in various communities across the city. There’s a great sense of leadership, which is what’s needed for the coming generation, so I’d definitely encourage anyone to get out to Jane-Finch Mall on June 20-21 to get a new perspective on Jane & Finch, as they aim to rebuild for the future and bring a necessary light to a seemingly dark past. If you’re interested in participating, visit the site to find more info