On Wednesday, March 28, Alozie “J.R.” LaRose of the 2011 Grey Cup champion BC Lions Football Club will share his remarkable life story at Communities Increasing Safety. Part of the Northwest Family Violence Awareness Conference, this family friendly evening at the REM Lee Theatre is about increasing safety and healing from family violence. Hosts Ksan Society, Terrace RCMP and Kermode Friendship Society say the 675 seats are filling fast but free tickets are still available at Misty River Books and All Seasons Source for Sports.
The evening includes an appearance by Kermode Friendship Society mascot Kody Kermode, and several representatives of local agencies. Doors open at 6:30 pm, the event runs from 7:00 to 8:30 and includes snacks, kids’ activities, and information about local services. Participants are welcome to bring donations of non-perishable food items for Ksan Society Women’s Transition House and other Ksan housing programs. Food items used most are canned soup, beans, tomatoes and dried pasta.
LaRose shares his life story to motivate others to strive for excellence, invest in themselves and work to become successful role models. “As a young boy, I was without a father figure and my mother struggled with addictions. I was faced with a lot of negativity and faced an uphill battle to become a successful person but I did it! ”, says LaRose. He will also speak about his involvement with the Be More Than A Bystander initiative, a partnership between the Ending Violence Association of BC and the BC Lions Football Club. This dynamic, cutting-edge educational and public awareness initiative is aimed primarily at boys and men, utilizing the BC Lions brand and credibility among male culture to market that it is ‘cool’ to respect women and girls.
The conference is being organized by a planning committee, advisors and volunteers from Ksan Society, Terrace RCMP, Kermode Friendship Society and other local and regional agencies. Morgen Baldwin has recently joined Ksan Society as Director of Programs and has been coordinating the planning process. She also works with the Ending Violence Association of BC and has spent the last 20 years working in various capacities to end domestic violence, sexual violence and other forms of interpersonal violence. Baldwin says “There have always been men and boys speaking out and working to end family violence, but women and girls have been leading the way for a long time; it is a huge relief to see so many guys taking up the challenge.”
Other men stepping up at Communities Increasing Safety are Don Wells who will provide a welcome to Laxgyibuu Clan Territory, MC Gary Patsey, Kermode Friendship Society’s Executive Director, RCMP Staff Sgt. Robert Pritchett and Paul Michel, Director of UNBC First Nations Studies in Prince George. Funders for the conference are the BC Ministry of Justice and the RCMP Family Violence Initiative Fund, with in-kind support from the Ending Violence Association of BC, Kermode Friendship Society and Ksan Society.
More Information: Morgen Baldwin, Ksan Society 250 635-2373 ext. 31
Conference Website: www.ksansociety.ca/conference