Leave Out Violence (LOVE)

Leave Out Violence (LOVE) programs reduce violence in the lives of Toronto youth and in our communities by building a team of young leaders who communicate a message of non-violence.

Our Impact Why We Exist

 LOVE is a not-for-profit violence prevention organization.  LOVE helps young people, aged 12 to 18, who’ve been victims, perpetrators and witnesses to violence, break the cycle in their lives, and then become community leaders of violence prevention. 

Working in priority Toronto communities,  LOVE’s programs end violence by helping youth communicate about critical issues that impact their lives, through photography, journalism, video and online media.  These young people build skills and confidence as they become leaders, taking their message of non-violence into priority schools and communities. The unique combination of knowledge, experience and skill enables them to be effective in promoting awareness, influencing attitudes and effecting change.  

Our Story What We Do

History of Organization

LOVE was created in Montreal in 1993 by Twinkle Rudberg and a team of volunteers, after Mrs. Rudberg’s husband Daniel was murdered by a 14-year old boy.  The inspiration for LOVE was Mrs. Rudberg's realization that the youth who killed her husband had been a victim of violence.  As the demand for LOVE’s programs have grown, we have expanded from Montreal in 1993, to Toronto (1996), Vancouver (2000), Halifax (2000), New York City (2005) and Eilat, Israel (2008), Uganda, Africa (2010). In Toronto, LOVE has developed programs in Scarborough, Rexdale, the Jane and Finch neighbourhood, St. Jamestown and the downtown area. 

LOVE’s founders believed that the best way to break the cycle of violence was by giving youth who understood violence an opportunity to be heard and a meaningful role in the movement against violence. 

Accolades and Accomplishments

Over the past 18 years, LOVE has evolved its programs, operations and model for creating and delivering community safety programs.  We have a proven track record, strong leadership and recognized community partners. We receive on-going requests for expansion from cities throughout Canada and other parts of the world. 

LOVE’s programs have been proven to be effective. 98% of LOVE youth leaders’ state: LOVE has helped them end the violence in their lives and use their experiences to help others.

Last year, the Toronto region had many significant achievements:

The LOVE Project debuted on Rogers TV. Reaching 200,000 viewers weekly, this 30-minute program gives youth a voice on current issues, positive choices and community safety. 

LOVE received the Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association Award on behalf of Motorola Canada, in recognition of our partnership to improve the lives of Canadians.

A photo taken by Octavia, a LOVE youth, was selected by Astral Media for a transit shelter campaign in select Toronto areas.   The message was “We all have a right to a city without violence”.

A documentary created and produced by LOVE youth, was selected from over 300 films for the 2010 Sprockets Film Festival for youth.

A community film festival was held, showcasing violence prevention videos produced by Toronto’s LOVE youth.

Our Programs How We Do It

LOVE’s programs model teaches youth how to document the violence in their lives and create concrete reality-based solutions to end violence.   The unique combination of knowledge, experience and opportunity enables youth to be effective in promoting awareness, influencing attitudes and effecting change.

Media Arts Program

LOVE’s entry-level multi-media program gives youth who’ve been recruited from alternative schools, group homes and various youth serving organizations an opportunity to express and document their thoughts and feelings about what violence means to them and how it has affected their lives.  By participating in media structured workshops (including writing, photography, broadcasting, videography and digital editing), youth develop the confidence and skills to constructively and creatively voice their views on the causes, impact and prevention of many forms of violence. Work produced in this program forms the basis of LOVE’s community violence prevention tools. 

Funding and Program Partners

  • Henry's Photo Video Digital
  • Motorola Raise Your Voice Foundation
  • Ryerson University
  • Rexdale's Pro Tech Media Centre

Program Impact

Sprockets TIFF Award – A LOVE documentary produced by youth from Lawrence Heights won first prize at the 2011 Sprockets (Toronto International Film Festival for youth).

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

"The arts help fuel innovation and creativity – critical components for a successful city. The arts help us commemorate our past, understand our present, and imagine our future."

Participant Vignette

LOVE gave me the gift of meeting people who have been through similar and painful experiences. It gave me the strength, courage and support to move on and help other youth. LOVE gave me a voice, and opportunities to express myself through writing, photography, dance, spoken word in positive ways to release the emotions I have. LOVE is a safe place from the danger of our corrupted streets.

S. M., 17 years old

Leadership Training Program

Youth are given the education, tools, and skills in preparation for an active community leadership role.   Skills training includes: public speaking, active listening, team work, conflict resolution, group facilitation, literacy, presentations, debating and media communications.   Youth learn how to communicate about the causes, consequences and solutions to many forms of violence.  They are uniquely situated to use their own experiences to educate their peers on practical violence prevention strategies.  Most youth leaders continue in their community role with LOVE for 2 – 5 years. 

Funding and Program Partners

  • CIBC

Program Impact

The majority of youth who graduated from the Media Arts Program join LOVE's Toronto Leadership Training program, demonstrating their interest in learning more about leadership and youth violence prevention.  This year's program was strengthened by engaging senior youth leaders in active leadership roles.  Topics included blogging, advanced photography and clay animation.  Other focus areas were on the themes of diversity and multiculturalism.  Youth created violence prevention tools such as videos and posters with these themes in mind.

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

“Civic engagement means strong leadership and builds inclusive cities. Involved, connected and engaged residents from all walks of life make for creative communities and a stronger city.”

Participant Vignette

I joined LOVE in September, 2008. At the time, in school, I felt that my thoughts and ideas were being oppressed and I wanted an opportunity to express myself freely. The leadership, communication photography and editing skills I’ve learned at LOVE have given me the confidence to pursue a career in Advertising & Journalism. I’m excited to begin Humber College in September.

Lexi, 20 yrs. old

School and Community Violence Prevention Outreach & Committees

Youth leaders use their presentation skills, personal stories, as well as educational tools created by the young participants, to examine the impact of violence and share violence-prevention strategies. 

With the guidance of LOVE staff, Violence Prevention Committees are established in recommended schools, creating a permanent presence. Students meet regularly throughout the school year to create projects that communicate a message of non-violence to the entire student body. Examples of some of these projects are photojournalism exhibits, school newsletters, assembly presentations and presentations to parents and faculty members. The goal of these committees is to facilitate students’ ownership of the violence prevention initiative in their schools.

Funding and Program Partners

  • Dion, Durrel & Associates

Program Impact

LOVE's Community Outreach Program reached over 15,000 individuals in Ontario with our powerful message this year.

Toronto's Vital Signs® indicator(s) addressed by Program

“Civic engagement means strong leadership and builds inclusive cities. Involved, connected and engaged residents from all walks of life make for creative communities and a stronger city."

Participant Vignette

From my perspective, LOVE has changed the students’ attitudes and behaviours both inside the classroom and in their views of the world and society at large. I have witnesses a growth within most students where students who began with a pessimistic attitude at the beginning of the program and didn’t want to participate, suddenly felt compelled to speak, share or create their opinions and thoughts through the eyes of a camera. I believe this tool of a camera helped kids crawl out of their shell, to really dig deep enough to realize how they were affected with the issues that were brought up in discussions. Shy, introverted students excelled in the final project by expressing themselves in a less invasive way. Students’ stories became voiced and appreciated by others, thus building confidence and engaging them in the program.

Teacher, Monsignor Fraser Catholic School

What You Can Do

Media Arts Program

Activities a donation will support

A donation to LOVE's Media Arts Program will help youth, who have lived with violence (victims, witnesses, perpetrators), learn tangible media skills and positive expression using photography, video, broadcasting and journalism.

Donation impact

The tools created and messages shared by youth from the Media Arts Program will inspire thousands of other young people to join the youth movement against violence.

 

Leadership Training Program

Activities a donation will support

By supporting LOVE's Leadership Training program, you help build the skills of these youth and prepare them for an active community leadership role.  Skills training includes: public speaking, active listening, conflict resolution, group facilitation, literacy, presentations and debating.  Youth learn about the causes, consequences and solutions to all forms of violence.  Participants learn how to lead interactive youth focused outreach presentations that inspire their audiences to take a stand against violence.   

Donation impact

A donation to LOVE's Leadership Training program will enable us to further develop the communication skills of youth leaders through advanced media training. 

 

School and Community Violence Prevention Outreach & Committees

Activities a donation will support

LOVE's School & Community Outreach programs target young people who are felt to have the greatest impact on the student body.  The intent is to optimize their team of youth leaders who can contribute to a movement that will impact the overall culture of their school. 

The methodology includes:

1) A series of workshops focusing on the causes, consequences and solutions to violence

2) Education on communication skills and group dynamics

3) Role modeling to peers and students from younger grades

4) Media training and the production of a final product communicating the youth voice on issues linked to violence prevention

Donation impact

With financial support of our School & Community Outreach programs, LOVE will be able to improve school safety and reduce the climate of fear among students, thus creating a long-term, sustainable impact on the violent culture identified by students, school administrators, educators and the police.

Contact

Lana Feinstein
Director of Development
416.785.8411 x27
Charitable Number: 847921301RR0001

Finance & Governance

Annual Operating Budget: 
$ 136,443

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