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EE With, Not In: Respectful and Reciprocal Experiential Education with Jane Finch Community Partners

EE With, Not In: Respectful and Reciprocal Experiential Education with Jane Finch Community Partners

Thursday, January 20 2022

This presentation outlines current explorations to mapping out what it means to do Experiential Education (EE) with the Jane Finch community. Historically, EE is often done in the community with little to no community feedback or inclusions on the effectiveness and implications of EE on residents, organizations, groups, and the community at large. Our work seeks to explore the community's perspective on experiential education, and what it means for the community to seek an approach of reciprocity, that is respectful of community knowledge and expertise as opposed to being grounded in assumptions and stigmatizations of the needs of the Jane Finch neighborhood. In this presentation, we seek to share our learnings, process, and findings of this work.


Abena Offeh-Gyimah, Project Co-Lead

Shenali Don, Community Research Coordinator

Abena Offeh-Gyimah is a writer, a researcher, a food consultant, and an advocate for an indigenous food sovereignty system. She's worked at Black Creek Community Farm as a coordinator for the youth farming program, with Building Roots as an urban gardener coordinator, with North York Community House as a Strong Neighborhood Coordinator, and currently project co-lead with the Jane Finch Community Research Partnership. Her food business, Adda Blooms, seeks to work with small scale farmers to bring ancestral foods worldwide. Her blog seeks to explore the intersections between food, culture, and equity. Abena’s passionate about preserving indigenous plants, seeds, and seeks to work in collaboration with small scale African farmers to grow and preserve ancestral foods.

Shenali Don is an undergraduate student pursuing Communication Studies and Human Resources Management and working towards a career in Public Relations. She has worked and continues to work with a number of community organizations, currently being the Programs Manager of The Flaunt It Movement and community research coordinator on the Jane-Finch Community Research Partnership. Shenali has successfully planned and supported a number of community-based campaigns, large events, research projects, and more, all driven by her passion for strengthening communities, and expanding her knowledge.