Next Update (Spring 2016)

Springtime greetings, and welcome to the latest edition of Next Update! We have updates from the six (soon to be seven) cities that our seven-month programs are offered in and news about three new initiatives on offer in 2016. 


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Alberta Climate Leadership Program

Next Up just finished it’s second full weekend session of its’ new Alberta-based Climate Leadership Program. The program began in March and will run for another three full weekends, ending in June 2016. We have 26 participants from 7 communities, reaching from Pincher Creek in the south to Saddle Lake in the North. Thus far we’ve met in Kananaskis Country and the Edmonton Federal Building, and will continue to gather at three more locations in central Alberta. Our participants come from a wide cross section of Albertan society that includes folks from First Nations, labour, education, policy, municipalities, the energy industry and regulators.

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CBC nominates Nadia Kidwai as one of Manitoba's Future 40

We at Next Up know that Nadia Kidwai, coordinator for NU Winnipeg, is a force to be reckoned with (Star Wars reference noted) in the wider realm of MB's social justice networks; however, we are so pleased that CBC knows it too! They recently announced Nadia's nomination as one of Manitoba's Future 40 leaders, builders, and change-makers who are making a difference in Manitoba. Here is the text of the official nomination and you can also find it here, on CBC's own website.




 Profile :: Nadia Kidwai

Nadia was born and raised in Cardiff, Wales and graduated from Oxford University (M.A. in Politics & History).

Since arriving in Winnipeg in 2004, she has worked in various sectors with a passion for diversity, multiculturalism, and community empowerment through grassroots community development, journalism (CBC Manitoba, Winnipeg Free Press), and co-founding the Canadian Muslim Leadership Institute.

Nadia is Chair of the Manitoba Women's Advisory Council, advising the Minister Responsible for the Status of Women, and a council member of the Immigration Partnership Winnipeg.

Nadia leads Next Up Winnipeg, a progressive leadership program for young people committed to social change and environmental sustainability. She also works for the Canadian CED Network.

Nadia is passionate about hosting "conversation cafes", believing that the way forward for our society is through creating a safe space where people from diverse backgrounds and life experiences can come together and create meaningful dialogue.

Most importantly, she is the mother of 2 young boys and therefore well versed in Star Wars, Minecraft and other equally important cultural phenomena.

Nominated by: Brendan Reimer 



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Learning About Reconciliation, Redress, Remembering & Resilience at Next Up SK Human Library

“We are here to learn from those with lived experience of systemic injustice, in the hope that we can create awareness and change for injustices that continue today.” said co-host and Next Up participant Caitlin Peiris as the Next Up Saskatchewan Human Library began on Monday, March 21. Under the title of Reconciliation, Redress, Remembering, and Resilience, the event brought together fifteen Saskatchewan residents as “human books” to share their stories of injustice and their responses to it with about 75 “readers”.

“Canadians are grappling with this concept in the wake of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission,” said current Next Up participant Justin Fisher. “This Human Library is a way to engage the community in discussions of the different forms of systemic injustices people face here, how they’re responding to it, and how we can all contribute positively to addressing those injustices.”


photo by Juliana Pelinsom Marques


Stories at the Human Library ranged from recent incidents of racial profiling and police brutality, to the legacies of the 60s scoop and Japanese-Canadian internment, and the discrimination faced by sex industry workers, among others. Readers participated in six rounds of “borrowing” at the human library, meaning they got to hear six of the fifteen stories. In the anonymous feedback they left on flip charts at the end of the night (see photo), one participant said the event gave them "a more meaningful definition for reconciliation." 

written by Tracey Mitchell and Justin Fisher

photo by Juliana Pelinsom Marques

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Next Up Regina Launches with Weekend Conference

On February 27th and 28th, Next Up Saskatchewan hosted a thought-provoking and invigorating conference on “Building Skills for Social and Environmental Justice” on Treaty 4 territory (Regina). Supported by the keynote address, on the LEAP Manifesto, from Seth Klein - Next Up co-founder and Director of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives BC office - the weekend’s events fostered great interest from the public. As Next Up prepares to launch its program in Regina in the fall of 2016, the conference and keynote provided a dynamic opportunity for local communities to learn more about Next Up.

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Next Up Ottawa teams up for "Citizen Youth" book launch

Next Up Ottawa teamed up with local researcher, professor, and author, Jacqueline Kennelly, to launch the paperback version of her book Citizen Youth: Culture, Activism, and Agency in a Neoliberal Era

The launch will be April 18, 2016, find out more here


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Next Up Sask Human Library Looking for Human Books & Readers!

Next Up Saskatchewan Presents: Reconciliation, Redress, Remembering and Resilience: Individual and Collective Stories of Injustice and How We Respond to It

Our 2016 Human Library provides an exciting opportunity for the public to connect with diverse narratives and worldviews. Instead of taking books off the shelves, “readers” listen to human “books” and learn new perspectives, histories, and lived realities.  

Topics storytellers may share with community “readers” at this particular event include, but are not limited to:

  • Indigenous stories of injustice, healing, or apologies regarding residential schools, Sixties Scoop, and missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls

  • Truth and Reconciliation Commissions (Occurring in Canada, nation to nation, and internationally – e.g., Guatemala, South Africa, Argentina, Nepal, etc.)

  • Histories and legacies of the Chinese head tax and Japanese Canadian Internment and other human rights atrocities in Canada

  • Stories of Compulsory Sterilization in Canada of Indigenous peoples, people living with mental illness, etc 


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Climate Leadership Program on CBC

The CBC called us up earlier this week, interested to know more about the new Climate Leadership Program that is starting in Alberta in March of this year.

Click below to hear Portia Clark interview Calgary Program Coordinator Mike Byerley on CBC Edmonton's Radio Active.

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Climate Leadership Program Callout


We are pleased to announce that Next Up Leadership is launching a new Climate Leadership Program (CLP) in Alberta. It is intended to develop climate leadership in sectors outside of the traditional climate movement while exploring and driving low carbon activities across Alberta. 


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Winter Check In from Next Up


Check in from Kevin

Things are going well at Next Up with 6 programs up and running across the country with 90 new participants. 
2016 is going to be our biggest year yet! We’re starting Next Up programs in Regina and Toronto; in BC we’ll be offering a bootcamp version of Next Up and a new leadership program for people age 55; and we’re starting a brand new 5-weekend Climate Leadership Program in Alberta. We’ll be sending more information about all of these programs out to you in the new year -  for those of you in Alberta, applications for the new program will open next week!
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