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News: Wednesday, May 31st, 2017

H.O.P.E. At WJ Mouat

In 2013, The Boys Club Network (BCN) presented the play "Man Up" to W. J. Mouat boys.

Inspired by the presentation, Mouat teachers Michael Enns and Cameron Smith saw an opportunity to bring the BCN program of H.O.P.E. (hope, opportunity, positive mentors, education) to at-risk boys who could benefit from an increased connection to school and an adult male role model in their lives.

In September 2016, their vision came to fruition with their locally developed course, H.O.P.E. for Boys Leadership 11. This is the first of two yearlong courses for these Grade 11 and 12 boys.

This past year, the Grade 11 boys considered opportunities and challenges facing Canadian male youth including relationships, careers, the environment, and their roles in the community.  Through self-reflection, the boys questioned themselves on “Who am I and how did I arrive here?”, “What do I want to achieve/want to become?”, and “How might I get there?”.

Next year in Grade 12, these boys will become mentors to incoming Grade 11s and promote the tenets of H.O.P.E.  Through outreach, the Grade 12 capstone project encompassing these tenets will allow the boys to demonstrate their acquired skills of empathy, creativity, critical thinking, and communication.

As the first year of the program ends, Michael and Cameron are pleased to report increased resiliency, better choices, healthier relationships, and stronger connections to school in the boys. They are grateful for the extensive supports and connections that the Boys Club Network has offered the program. And, they are also looking forward to the leadership roles the Grade 12s will take on as mentors to the incoming Grade 11s.

We are proud of the hard work, dedication and commitment that Michael and Cameron have made in making a difference in the lives of at-risk boys at Mouat.