We are excited to have a diverse group of speakers joining us for Ignite Abbotsford: Passions and Perspectives!
TED LEAVITT | 20 ADHD Stories in 5 Minutes
Ted is a Registered Clinical Counselor in private practice and Program Manager at Langley Youth and Family Services. Specialize in impulse control problems, parenting, and trauma.
“When I was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult, it explained so much. Listening to these stories might make you wonder why it took so long.”
KATHERINE MULSKI | Taming the High-Functioning Worry Dragon
Katherine is currently working as a bilingual Instructional Coach for the Langley School District. Prior to that, her passion for working with teachers took her to SFU as an Inservice Faculty Associate teaching Graduate Diploma in Education programs. She has taught in Trinidad/Tobago and South Korea. Katherine is studying as an EdD candidate and hopes to focus her research on teacher wellness. You can find her fly-fishing or enjoying walks with her husband and Bulldog, Nora. Her ability to ‘Mulski’task is always a work in progress.
PATRICIA CULLEY | Don’t Pick Up the Rope!
Patricia is a mother to and champion of 5 amazing children. She believes that it is the deepest desire of the human heart to be known and loved; and in being known, to be loved, not in spite of who you are but because of it.
CHRISTINA HENDERSON | Understanding Ourselves in Parts
Christina’s passion is social justice and social change. She believes this change begins inside ourselves, when we transform our own suffering to light the way for others. These values have driven her career to a multitude of places from working with folks struggling with addiction, high-risk youth, and with various community development projects. These days she keeps busy with her private practice, Expression Counselling, and is a sessional Instructor in the Social Work Department at the University of the Fraser Valley. Her greatest teachers, and the true loves of her life are her two daughters and her soon-to-be husband.
THE ROBERT BATEMAN SECONDARY MENTAL WELLNESS COMMITTEE
The Robert Bateman Secondary Mental Wellness Committee is made up of five high school students with a passion for mental wellness. Caylee, Kenzie, Clara, Bailey and Cambree have utilized their personal experiences with mental health to create an event that inspires others to walk alongside each other in the continuum of mental wellness.
The Robert Bateman Secondary Mental Wellness Committee aims to inspire the community to become more aware of the importance of maintaining mental wellness. This team of youth have organized a yearly Mental Wellness Week at Robert Bateman Secondary where students and staff participate in over thirty activities with community presenters enlightening different aspects of mental wellness. The goal of this annual event is to bring the community closer together and break the stigma surrounding mental health.
Wiyé.nox, man of sound, was a name gifted to Luke Dandurand from the elders of Kwantlen First Nation and his hereditary chief, Marilyn Gabriel, for his public speaking capabilities and extensive background in music. Wiyé.nox’s current work is to educate about the success, accomplishments, pride and passion of his Kwantlen family.
Follow Luke on Facebook: Luke Dandurand / wiyé.nox
Watch Luke’s TEDxLangleyEd Talk: A Journey of Reconciliation and Re-building Relationships
TONGO from THE CHILLIWACK GORILLAS | Learning To Laugh Again
The Chilliwack Gorilla Clan have a passion for Youth, the community and teaching people to smile and laugh again. We live in a world with serious problems that will not be solved with laughter, but laughter will give the wedge so that difficult problems can be resolved, acted on and learned from.
The legend goes that many years ago two friendly Apes decided to go to Chilliwack to hockey and other events to teach the Humans to learn to Laugh again. As we all know it is easier to send messages to your local Ape then talk to a human, friend or family member. The Apes have assisted youth in dealing with bullying, suicide thoughts, drug use and other teen issues. We adore the youth of our communities and those that care about them.
EMMA POTTS | An Alternate Perspective of “Problem” Youth
As an alternate student, Emma will emphasize the benefits of being in an alternate program with the extra services and how these programs can be effective for others as well Emma hopes that her presentation will help some to overcome their prejudices against alternate students and see the value in providing the extra services.
Emma has reshaped her own future, and can make a difference helping to shape the future of others. She is a mind of the next generation, and wants to share what she has learned and experienced. In addition to studying at ACE, Emma is involved with the HELP Project in Fraser Cascade as a youth council member, has given presentations to the Board of Trustees, completed an audition to Tedx Chilliwack, and is building a relationship with our Substance Use Counsellor in order to receive mentorship from her. She will also be part of the committee that will organize a speech/presentation competition in the District.
Sandy Balascak has been working with at-risk youth for more than 10 years, and is passionate about sharing the successes of her students. She has spoken about her program at TEDxLangleyED, conferences, and in the news. Her philosophy is; “There is no such thing as problem youth, just youth with problems. Teach them to cope and they will soar.” In her 10 years at ACE, the students have proven that on a regular basis with many successes and accolades despite having to deal with a variety of variety of issues in their own lives.
Sandy will be talking about the youth, their challenges, and how they have overcome them. What these youth are capable of is truly inspirational and it will give people a different perspective beyond the negative stereotypes associated with alternate school students.
Follow Sandy on her social media channels:
Twitter: Sandy Balascak
Watch Sandy’s TEDxLangleyEd talk: From Outcast to “Incast”: Reintegrating Disenfranchised Youth