Opening Lecture

29 September 2015 at 7:00 PM

 Keeping our promise to children: the relevance of Korczak’s
legacy for children today

WATCH VIDEO: It Depends Who’s Working: The Relevance of Janusz Korczak Today

Marny Point, Musqueam: Welcome to Traditional and Unceded Musqueam Territory

Dr. Blye Frank, Dean and Professor,
Faculty of Education, University of British Columbia

Dr. Krzysztof Olendzki, Ambassadeur Titulaire,
Consul General of the Republic of Poland in Vancouver

Jerry Nussbaum, President of the Janusz Korczak
Association of Canada

Lillian Boraks-Nemetz, Author,
Board Member the Janusz Korczak Association of Canada: Introducing Janusz Korczak

Matthew Lee, the Janusz Korczak Scholarship recipient for 2014/15

Keeping our Promise to Children: the Relevance of Korczak’s Legacy for Children Today.

Mr. Irwin Elman, Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth of Ontario and President, Canadian Council of Child and Youth Advocates

Members of Youth in Care Canada, Canada’s national youth in care network: Rachel Malek, James Copping, Jess Boon. All will bring their lived experience in the Child Welfare system to the conversation.

Dr. Charles Ungerleider, Director of Research and Managing Partner of Directions Evidence and Policy Research Group, LLP.

The gap between all the frameworks, action plans, strategies, policies, and  legislation that we use to write our promises to children and the lived experience of children – is a chasm. Perhaps there is no greater example of this chasm than the lived  experience of children and youth growing up in state care. Their voices fill that void and the echo of Janusz Korczak can be heard clearly in their call to action. “It’s not rocket science” they have said, “just hard to do.”The key is listening and relationship.

Irwin Elman was appointed Provincial Advocate for Children and Youth of Ontario in 2008, the first independent Child and Youth  Advocate for the province. Prior to becoming the Provincial Advocate, Irwin was the Manager of the Pape Adolescent Resource Centre in Toronto (PARC) for more than 20 years. The award winning organization supports young people as they leave child welfare care. Later, he served as the Director of Client Service at Central Toronto Youth Services, an innovative children’s mental health centre.

For his work, Irwin has been recognized in 2007 with the Outstanding Achievement  Recognition Award from the Ministry of Children and Youth Services; he was named one of 10 Canadian Heroes of 2006, by MacLean’s Magazine; and received the Outstanding Youth Service Award from the Ontario  Association of Children’s Aid Societies in 2003. He also received an Honorary Degree from the University of Guelph-Humber.

Irwin has a Masters of Education and a Bachelor of Education from the University of Toronto and a Bachelor of Arts Degree (Honours) from Carleton University.

Charles Ungerleider, a sociologist whose research has addressed a wide range of topics from assessment to xenophobia, is Director of Research and Managing Partner of Directions Evidence and Policy Research Group, LLP. Conversant with a broad range of research methods, Ungerleider has produced systematic reviews of literature, policy analyses, analyses using large and small data sets, evaluation reports, as well as government briefing documents and cabinet submissions. Ungerleider has broad knowledge of government and public education systems in Canada from his research, from his direct experience as a researcher, and from serving as a Deputy Minister of Education in British Columbia.

This session has been co-ordinated by Lillian Boraks-Nemetz and Jerry Nussbaum, members of the board of the Janusz Korczak Association of Canada.

Rachel Malek is a 23 year old student and social justice advocate interested in the rights and education of young people. She first became involved with the Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks as a Youth Project Staff when she was 17, facilitating Rights 2 Success workshops in BC Youth Custody and helping to create the “Exploring Your Dreams” education workbook for youth transitioning to post-secondary.  Rachel has stayed involved with the FBCYICN in numerous roles over the years, leading to her current position since May 2015 as an Outreach Group member.

James Copping is studying law enforcement in his 4th year at the Justice Institute of B.C., and has a desire to work in the field of criminal justice in either law enforcement or as a probation officer. While he pursues education, much of his extra time is dedicated to the Federation of BC Youth in Care Networks in multiple volunteer roles that encourage and promote the youth in care movement.

Jess Boon is an alumnus of care, certified counsellor, and a 2nd year student at the University of British Columbia. She has been a long time member of the Federation of B.C Youth in Care Networks, and has worked as an independent contractor for several different non-profits within the child welfare system. Jess Boon currently works for the Developmental Disabilities Association of B.C and sits on the youth advisory council for the Director of Child Welfare.  Jess attends UBC on the tuition waiver program and hopes to declare her major in Social Work.