Testimonial by Moffat S. Makuto
Benjamin has been a very dedicated volunteer at our Multicultural Youth Centre. He was Vice President of the Regional Multicultural Youth Council (RMYC) last year and served on the executive board. In this capacity, he was on the planning on organizing committee of youth council which coordinated a very successful Voices of Youth: Our Past Present and Future Indigenous Education Conference the RMYC hosted at Dennis Franklin Cromarty First Nations High School February 15-16, 2019. He was also part of the team that hosted the Community Reconciliation forum the youth council sponsored last spring and led discussions for our consultations to develop Canada's first ever youth policy last May.
Ben chaired the youth council's Safer Communities/Safer Schools campaign and liaised with the Thunder Bay Police Chief Sylvie Hauth to arrange a meeting with a cross-section of RMYC members to enhance youth safety in the community. He also worked with me to plan the Suicide Awareness Walk that took place in Thunder Bay on March 22. While working with him, he proved to be a very motivated and passionate about equity and has been involved in activities that engage and empower children and youth to be actively involved in creating the changes they want to see in their future.
Benjamin has been a great advocate about multiculturalism, equity, inclusion and social justice. He participated in inclusive activities that involve minority, Indigenous, racialized, marginalized and mainstream children and youth growing up together and learning to get along. He co-ordinated events in high-risk neighbourhoods and helped us to mobilize kids and teens as well as their parents to be part of the solution to the problems they face.
For the time I worked with and supervised Benjamin, I have seen him evolve into a very caring, resourceful, hardworking, and responsible young man. He learned how to run RMYC meetings, do research on social issues, facilitate workshops lead roundtable discussions and contribute immensely to our community forums. He is a good listener, has excellent communication skills for dialogue and presentations, and is quite articulate. He has great leadership qualities to mobilize others using peer influence to create positive change. Any assistance to help Ben furter his education is an investment in his potential to advance social justice, equity and make a difference.
Written by Moffat Makuto
Executive Director, Regional Multicultural Youth Council