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From our Community Partners

Seasons of Hope, James Bartleman, OC OOnt
This is a short excerpt taken from Seasons of Hope, the autobiography of James Bartleman, OC OOnt, former Lieutenant Governor of Ontario.

I'm most proud of my role in creating Summer of Hope reading camps on Ontario's northern First Nations. I began by obtaining the support of the First Nations themselves and used a grant from the Ontario government to fund five pilot projects. Scouts Canada, the YMCA, and Frontier College (Canada's oldest literacy organization) worked together to run them in the summer of 2005. The 200 campers and fifty staff loved the program, but at $100,000 per camp, costs in my opinion were too high and joint management by the three organizations too cumbersome. I thus came up with a model that cost no more than $33,000 per camp and turned the inititiative over to Frontier College to run. I then obtained funding from universities, teacher federations, trade unions, banks, power companies, and charitable foundations to support a five-year program in all twenty-six fly-in communities in the province. Frontier College did such a good job managing the program that the money I raised paid for six instead of five years of operation.

After I retired in 2007, Frontier College expanded operations across the country as First Nations everywhere embraced the program. In 2014, 6,000 campers in eighty-seven camps read an estimated eleven books each, 
93 percent of teachers noted strengthened social skills, eighty-nine percent noted improved academic skills, and 89 percent of parents said their parents said their children read more because of camp. In 2015, 10,000 campers attended ninety-nine camps. Although summer reading camps cannot fill the gaps in programs provided by the federal government, they offer children the chance to dream dreams of a better life, just as I dreamed my dreams when exposed to the magic world of books when I was a kid. 

 
Sumaiya Gangat, CUSP, community partner

The Concordia University Student Parents Centre would like to congratulate Frontier College (Montreal) on their 25th Anniversary. We encourage you to keep up the good work, helping children with learning and literacy. Our members and their children have benefited from the Frontier College volunteers' skills and dedication. At our tutoring program and during story time at our Study Breaks the Frontier College volunteers had a great rapport with the kids, and with our staff, and have helped us expand our programs. We also want to thank you for the free training that you provided to our staff and volunteers. We look forward to our continued collaboration.
 

Kidel Reid, Education Program Coordinator for the Cote des Neiges Black Community Association
I have been working on a school that is community oriented. It consists of a high school accredited program called the “Community Academic Achievement Program,” a bilingual program called the “Bilingual Academic Achievement Program,” and an English Literacy Program. Without the participation of Frontier College and its tutors, my belief is that the education programs would not function very effectively; the tutors are a vital part. I would like to thank everyone who has been a part of our journey. But there is one gentleman in particular that needs special mention because his work ethic, punctuality, patience, integrity, and dedication cannot be questioned. Monsieur Paul-Andre Martineau is a natural talent and could possibly be the best teacher I know. He has taught the Intermediate French class at the Cote des Neiges Black Community Association since the program began and has become synonymous with it and its success. In regards to Literacy and the work Frontier College is doing to combat it. Well imagine losing one of your senses whether it is touch, taste, smell, seeing, or hearing. Literacy should be another sense because it is just as vital to feeling like a complete person as any other sense and without it you could never truly be whole.

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Jennifer McKenzie, Acting Customer Experience Manager - Kids, Chapters Thunder Bay
“Every year we receive glowing compliments from customers about the fun, free and quality programming that is provided at our store. The volunteers are always courteous and professional. They ensure that the events are fun, but they never lose focus on promoting literacy.
Frontier College has truly been a blessing to us over the years.” –Jennifer McKenzie, Acting Customer Experience Manager - Kids, Chapters Thunder Bay   
 
Chantal Thomas, Family Care Worker and Volunteer Coordinator, Native Women’s Shelter of Montreal, QC
“I wanted to take the time to thank you for all that you have done for the Native Women’s Shelter of Montréal in the past few years.  The reading circles for the children of clients staying with us have been instrumental in the development of their language skills, and an excellent time for structured socialization.  We are also very appreciative of the donation of books.” – Chantal Thomas, Family Care Worker and Volunteer Coordinator, Native Women’s Shelter of Montreal, QC
 
David “Mookie” Magloir, Community Recreation Coordinator, George Dixon Community Recreation Centre, Halifax, NS
“We have sustained a successful partnership for over five years, and this would not have been possible without the continued commitment of the Frontier College coordinator and volunteers. We provide an after-school program for the community and the children definitely benefit from a variety of teaching styles as well as the development of many friendships. 
 
Our children are ages 4 – 12 and thus, the Early Intervention Literacy support coupled with tremendously gifted and friendly volunteers is definitely helping to prevent long term reading difficulty. Many of the children’s parents have commented on the growth of their child’s vocabulary and their increased passion for reading and getting help with their homework. They are extremely appreciative for all of the extra support that they receive.” – David “Mookie” Magloir, Community Recreation Coordinator, George Dixon Community Recreation Centre, Halifax, NS
 
Amanda Audette, Program Manager, Boys & Girls Club of Fredericton, MB
“Our partnership with Frontier College began in 2010, when we were approached by the organization. We saw this as the perfect opportunity to introduce children to experiences that have been largely inaccessible because of economic disadvantages. Thanks to Frontier College, we have impacted the lives of over 150 children each year since our union was first formed.” - Amanda Audette, Program Manager, Boys & Girls Club of Fredericton, MB
 
Jennifer Hope, Executive Director. Common Ground Co-Operative, Toronto, ON
“For a number of years, Frontier College has partnered with Common Ground Co-operative in providing Literacy for persons with developmental disabilities. 

Our participants enjoy being engaged in learning, and interacting with not only with other students but with the facilitators of this program as well. The Literacy Program provided by Frontier College is an integral step toward self-esteem gained through learning and knowledge and it has been of great benefit to those that we support. To feel that you have learned is to know that you have grown!” – Jennifer Hope, Executive Director. Common Ground Co-Operative, Toronto, ON
 
Linda Newman, Special Education Program Coach, First Nations Education Steering Committee & First Nations Schools Association, West Vancouver, BC
It was evident from the children’s and the group leader’s pride and enthusiasm for the activities and experiences that the Ditidaht Summer Learning Camp was a success. I especially liked the Literacy Program and the way that reading and writing were incorporated into the engaging and fun events that the children were experiencing throughout the camp.” – Linda Newman, Special Education Program Coach, First Nations Education Steering Committee & First Nations Schools Association, West Vancouver, BC
 
Jen Squibb. Camp Counsellor, Moose Cree, Taykwa Tagamou, Mishkeegogamang, Wabaseemoong, and Whitesand First Nations
“I truly believe that the impact of these camps is tremendous; they are important educational and social investments for children and youth and they provide a powerful relationship-building component for all participants.”– Jen Squibb. Camp Counsellor, Moose Cree, Taykwa Tagamou, Mishkeegogamang, Wabaseemoong, and Whitesand First Nations
 
Tim Bell, Manager of Children’s Services, Toronto Kiwanis Boys & Girls Club, Toronto, ON
“We have had the pleasure of working in partnership with Frontier College for over 30 years and recognize the valuable contributions this partnership has provided to the children and youth living in Regent Park. Frontier College volunteers provided homework support, literacy development and the joy of reading to over 270 children and youth participating in our After School programs. The dedicated efforts of the volunteers enables us to provide additional supports to children with special needs, improve outcomes for students, develop a child-authored newsletter and formalize the positive outcomes that come from adult mentor to child mentee relationships. The volunteers from Frontier College are truly interested in engaging with our young people and committed to making a difference.” – Tim Bell, Manager of Children’s Services, Toronto Kiwanis Boys & Girls Club, Toronto, ON
 
Amanda Audette, Program Manager, BGCF, Fredericton, NB
“Our partnership with Frontier College began in 2010, when we were approached by the organization. We saw this as the perfect opportunity to introduce children to experiences that have been largely inaccessible because of economic disadvantages. Thanks to Frontier College, we have impacted the lives of over 150 children each year since our union was first formed.
 
Feedback we have received about Frontier College from staff, parents, and the children has reflected time and time again that the Homework Club, and tutoring is vital and worth every effort. Our parents appreciate the avenue of opportunity that a free-of-charge literacy-based education offers their children during critical stages of emotional development. Our staff members enjoy watching the children get excited about tutoring with the volunteers who offer a safe environment that fosters the importance and fun of learning.
 
It is important to us to have our young people connected to community in our safe and supportive environment. We value offering the opportunity for our young people to explore and enjoy new opportunities while they learn more about themselves and their interests. It is our sincere pleasure to work with this organization in effort to work together enhancing the lives of our members and helping them reach their full potential.”  – Amanda Audette, Program Manager, BGCF, Fredericton, NB
 
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