The following is an excerpt from an email message from Jane’s Walk Toronto:
“No one can find what will work for our cities by looking at…suburban garden cities, manipulating scale models, or inventing dream cities, you’ve got to get out and walk,”
– Jane Jacobs, Downtown is for People (1957)
We’re nearly a month away from the launch of Jane’s Walk Toronto 2019!
Haven’t signed up to lead a walk?
This year we’ve made things as easy as possible for you, and we’re here to support you along the way.
Remember, you don’t have to be an expert at anything, simply willing to share your story and the many ways in which you interact with your community on a daily basis.
Our upcoming training sessions will be of great help to a lot of our 2019 Walk Leaders, so make sure to check them out (scroll down to learn more about our initial one on Wednesday, March 27th).
[End of excerpt]
Jane’s Walks are a great way for residents to get to know their communities (and connect with other communities across Toronto), have a good time together, and engage in community self-organizing
For several years starting 2012, Mike James and I led many walks in Long Branch and elsewhere. We found it a great experience. In our case, we designed the walks as “walking conversations.” Mike and I would say a few words and walk participants would offer a wealth of information and insights. We found that was a great way to go.
I always made it a point to research and time the walk route, and to prepare a set of concise, evidence-based notes addressing points of interest along the way.
My own brief points, and points that Mike would share, served as the starting point for the great conversations that ensued, with input from everyone who wanted to speak, at each stop along the way.
Mike grew up in New Toronto and now lives in Niagara on the Lake. I found it great to work on walks with him, as I was not keen (in my case), when I was first asked to lead a walk, to take on the full responsibility of leading a walk on my own. It was the local councillor’s office that originally contacted me, and asked if I might want to lead a walk in Long Branch. I’m pleased the suggestion came my way. Otherwise, I might never have become involved.
Reaching out is so important!
In subsequent years I was involved with organizing walks led by local politicians in Mississauga and Toronto. Again, this was a great way to go.
I strongly urge you to get involved in the leading and organizing of, and active participation in, Jane’s Walks everywhere.