Urban Squash Toronto is an after-school program for disadvantaged youth. Not only does it give them a chance to play squash, but the facilitators also act as tutors and educators.
This past Saturday was the grand opening of their new classroom. “What was once a dream, of making a classroom in this facility, is now this amazing space,” says Co-Founder and Board Member Don Givelos. It is a welcome addition to the facility: the bright and colourful classroom juxtaposes the converted military base’s industrial demeanor.
Urban Squash Toronto is a charitable organization that relies on grants and donations to make giving kids an opportunity to be successful possible. “We are very, very thankful to Kevin Humphrey and the Trillium Foundation. It’s because of their grant… that we were able to put this space together, ” executive director Shivani Ruparell says. The organization is being recognized by some of the biggest donators out there, including Oxford Learning and The MLSE TeamUp Fund.
Urban Squash Toronto gets youth from the Jane and Finch area and other priority neighbourhoods. There were also kids from the United States at the event. “Canada and the US are the two greatest countries in the world… It’s about reaching down to those people who need a helping hand, pulling them up so they can stand on their own two feet, so they, in turn, can help bring others up, to help them stand on their own two feet,” says Mark Adler, York Centre Member of Parliament. I hope that by donating my media production skills and spare time towards this organization more children are supported and people of means get involved.
Urban Squash Toronto is a constant inspiration for my work as a documentarian. I believe that keeping your body fit keeps your mind fit as well. It is a pleasure and an honour to be a part of such an amazing organization. It’s also incredible to see it grow and I am excited to see what the future holds!
Check out the video and the photo set!