The fifth round of Ottawa's Next Up program has come to a close. The fifteen participants received their certificates of completion after mapping out their journey throughout the program over the last seven months.
Guided through a facilitated workshop, the graduates looked back at their time in Next Up and documented the new skills they had learned, the connections they built in the community and between one another, and the poignant lessons learned. The 'lessons', scrawled on small pieces of paper, were shorthand pieces of wisdom garnered from each other and guests, for example: "our emotions are valid", "tell your story before someone else does", "use art to shift consciousness", and "be hard on the issues but soft with each other."
These fifteen graduates will join an Ottawa alumni network of 60+ former Next Up participants. We congratulate them and look forward to seeing where they go next!