| Mar 29, 2007


Feature Article - March 29, 2007

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Feature Article - March 29, 2007

Living L.I.F.E.at Sydenham High Schoolby Zannah Matson

It is not often that a group of students is truly excited to stay after school on a Friday night, but anticipation filled the air as a group of 50 girls made their way to the Sydenham Gymnasium. It was no ordinary Friday on March 23; it was the first ever Sydenham High School Women’s Night. As the matching tee shirts of the girls announced, the event is called L.I.F.E., an acronym standing for a great mission of Leading Inner Female Empowerment. The night brought together girls from all grades and social groups to participate in workshops and discussions, listen to guest speakers, watch movies, and bond through teamwork.

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Organized in an attempt to break down familiar cliques that separate teenaged girls in an unhealthy fashion, and to educate these girls about issues surrounding their mental and physical well being. The KFLA Health Unit put on a workshop about body image for the girls that got them involved and talking about the way they see themselves and the factors that influence this image. The Take Charge Crew and Generation Empowered, a youth movement against tobacco, were present to give a presentation about smoking in movies and its greater effects on the health of its victims. There was physical training in both yoga and weights for the girls, as well as a self-defence workshop to teach them how to protect themselves. A classroom was turned into a spa for the evening, as two women did facials to teach them how to treat their skin, no matter what type. These workshops dealt with important issues that girls do not always have the opportunity to talk about, to create a well-rounded evening for the students.

There were discussions about abusive relationships and the varying degrees of abuse that all of the girls got involved in, followed by our guest speaker, Pam Havery, the Executive Director for Dawn House. Pam spoke about the ways in which her shelter empowers women, and how each woman should find her personal power within society. When the workshops were over, it was time for the girls to show what they had learned through skits that dealt with issues facing female students. This teamwork bonded the girls together and taught vital communication and problem-solving skills.

The connections made throughout the night among the girls are sure to last beyond the event and have brought together a group of people often arbitrarily segregated.

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