Sunday, September 23, 2012

Looking forward, looking back...

It's been a few months since our first Knights in Training conference project for 552 boys at the G.H. Dawe Community Center in Red Deer, AB, Canada. Some reflections from me are in order...
  • 712 conference shirts were worn in 24 different colors for our fifth grade delegates, teachers and volunteers... awesome!
  • We (as in the committee of wonderfully dedicated people who contributed their time and passion to planning this project) were anxious and excited at the same time as we made final preparations to ensure the day was fun, informative and memorable for all. I'd be remiss if I didn't give a nod here to those who stepped up to help us make sure the day was all of these things... our presenters. Not one of them asked for a dime in exchange for sharing their wisdom and experience beyond travel expenses. As the complete roster was finalized we realized their contribution to the project was nothing short of remarkable and most honorable.
  • To round out our conference agenda, we had tremendous support from Randy Pentlichuk and PENT Continental, our food service vendor providing a great deal on lunch and snacks. We also offered a multimedia presentation via Much Music's Motivational Media, an exciting culturally significant opening ceremony via the Red Deer Aboriginal Youth Dance Troupe and an inspirational closing message by our friend, Justin Flunder.
  •  The day came and went so fast. I heard so many comments form participants, presenters and volunteers making statements like, "I had no idea how big this thing was going to be," and "this is something that should be happening within every community."
  • Our major and minor sponsors came through huge for us. Many, many thanks to the Red Deer Kinsmen, the Alberta Government, Family Services of Central Alberta and both Red Deer Public and Catholic School Districts.
  • Every single one of the presenters indicated they would like to return for our KIT Conference 2013... wow.
  • The G.H. Dawe Community Center proved to be a perfect venue for such an event. The staff at the Center were awesome all day long... the conference went off without a hitch largely as a result of their superior organization and efficiency.
  • Planning and showcasing such an event is very hard work, but the reward is worth the effort. Many leaders stepped up in our open system planning context to ensure that the effort was successful.
I could go on, and over time no doubt I will, but for now Grow Boys Red Deer is looking forward to our Kit Conference 2013. We are looking to reconnect with fellow supporters from the last two years, and also to grow our network by bringing in new folks who have something to offer the boys of Red Deer. We are looking to expand our project base by supporting a TED youth Red Deer event and an Edcamp Red Deer event that embeds the voice of youth in a conference for teachers about how to teach and learn better.

So much to do, and so much to gain. We're on the grow and ready for you if you think you can help out in any way. Contact us via Twitter @reddeergrowboys or Gmail at

No comments:

Post a Comment