Border City students to share their stories

By Kassidy Christensen

March 28, 2017 12:00 AM

RAW Twelve Lloydminster high school students will soon take to the Vic Juba Community Theatre April 6 at 7 p.m. for Pecha Kucha 1.5. KASSIDY CHRISTENSEN LLS PHOTO

Lloydminster youth will be given a voice and the chance to share their story at Pecha Kucha 1.5.
On April 6 at 7 p.m., 12 Lloydminster high school students will individually take to the stage at the Vic Juba Community Theatre to share their interpretation of the overarching theme of “Raw.”
Inspired by the Pecha Kucha 1 event held in September 2016 by the Lloydminster Young Professionals and 1450 Marketing Collective, Pecha Kucha 1.5 will be co-hosted by the Lloydminster Catholic School Division (LCSD) and the Lloydminster Public School Division (LPSD), with Lloydminster Young Professionals and 1450 Marketing Collective, after much interest was generated from the initial event.
Trisha Le, co-founder of Lloydminster Young Professionals with Jason Whiting, said after the first Pecha Kucha event requests were received from different avenues to host a second one, and the school boards were the best fit.
“For the kids and the youth to be able to present and tell stories and really just to be genuine and get up on stage was a great opportunity we thought,” Le said.
Kristine Knourek, co-founder of 1450 Marketing Collective with Jill Kelly and Penny Manners, said, “our understanding was there were several educators in the audience at Pecha Kucha 1, and they approached Lloydminster Young Professionals along with 1450 Marketing Collective.”
“(They) said, ‘We really want to do something like this with the youth in the community, we’re so inspired by the creativity and by the messages that were shared and think there (are) very similar messages that our students across LPSD and LCSD have to share,’” Knourek said.
Le said she hopes stories can be told.
“Often time we think of conferences, special speakers ... people can’t be able to share their passions, theirs ideas or just their quirkiness. I wanted to have an opportunity for the kids to get on stage and tell their story,” Le said.
Knourek said from 1450’s perspective, they are all about celebrating creativity and celebrating the different facets of expression and honouring that side of marketing.
“For us, seeing young people actually have the courage to step up and step out, practise their public speaking skills, practise the visual side with their slide shows is cultivating that spirit of expression,” said Knourek, adding it makes our city a better, more well-rounded place.
Pecha Kucha is a presentation format built around showing 20 images for 20 seconds each, totalling a presentation of roughly six and a half minutes long. The presenter speaks while images supporting their story move forward automatically.
Jessie Mann, co-organizer of Pecha Kucha 1.5 from LCSD and digital education administrator for the LCSD, said she attended Pecha Kucha 1 and it was a roller coaster of emotions, and was completely overwhelmed with the strength it took for the presenters to do what they did. 
“I thought if we can get kids to jump on board with this that it would be a life-changing experience for them.
“(It) would give them a confidence boost and a little Pecha Kucha alumni family to use as a soundboard for other things,” Mann said.
Victoria Oldershaw, co-organizer from the LPSD and English teacher at Lloydminster Comprehensive High School (LCHS), said it recently dawned on her just how important something like Pecha Kucha is for the students.
“To see kids who want to have a voice and want to say something and tell other people what they think and what they believe and have a message, it’s pretty empowering,” Oldershaw said.
Samuel Scribante, a Grade 12 LCHS student, said at first he was thinking he wouldn’t be interested in speaking at Pecha Kucha 1.5, but after some thought, realized he has a story to share.
“My presentation is about immigrating into a new country and kind of just the journey of an immigrant and understanding their state of mind, and in that, being more accepting of people immigrating into Canada,” Scribante said.
For Scribante, the topic of “Raw” means raw feelings or raw personality.
“Which is a process that I had to go through as an immigrant is kind of looking at myself and rebuilding who I was once I got to Canada,” he said.
Jade Shivak, a Grade 12 LCHS student, decided to sign up because she said she is the type of person who likes to prove things to herself. “I wanted to prove that I could articulate myself and make something that people would really listen to,” Shivak said.
When Shivak thought of the theme Raw, she thought back to past events in her life that were traumatic, but realized why would she do that when she could talk about what’s going on in her life right now. “That’s why I did my presentation on my current Grade 12 year and all the trials and tribulations that have come with that,” Shivak said.
Mann hopes the students take away confidence from the experience of performing at Pecha Kucha 1.5.
“Confidence in knowing who they (are) and where they come from, whatever that is, and you just need to own who you are and be proud of who you are,” Mann said.
For Oldershaw, she hopes the students see they have a voice and that people are going to listen.
“That we want to hear what they have to say and that it’s pretty powerful and empowering and real,” Oldershaw said.
Le said she hopes the students connect to the community and that they really share a story other people can connect to.
For Knourek, her hope is the students take away a sense of pride in knowing they’ve shared their story, and a sense of a greater support system within their community.
Scribante said he hopes the audience takes away just all the unique stories that are present in the community and in the youth, and that it’s a great opportunity to bridge the gap between youth and adults.
“Just show that the youth are facing similar situations and have their own situations they have to deal with as the adults do,” Scribante said.
Shivak said everyone has a unique story to tell, and everyone in the audience is going to be able to connect to some aspect of that.
“And take it home with them as something they can relate to or something they can think of for the future to build upon,” Shivak said.
Tickets are $5 in advance and $10 at the door, and 19 and under are free with ID.
A portion of proceeds from ticket sales will go towards the Lloydminster Youth Council and their initiatives, Le said.
“We’ll have two performances in this one, one is a dance, a contemporary dance, and one is spoken word poetry. It’s a really good mix,” Le said.
Knourek said 1450 Marketing Collective is honoured to work alongside Lloydminster Young Professionals once again.
“We’re happy to see Pecha Kucha grow and bring LPSD and LCSD into the fold of the Pecha Kucha family,” Knourek said.

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