More than 100 people gathered at Grande Prairie Regional College Wednesday morning to take part in frank talks about the need for healthy relationships and communication at the 11th Annual Breakfast with the Guys.
“It’s really cool to see,” says Program Coordinator for Next Gen Men Ryan Valley. “I haven’t been to the Grande Prairie one before, but it’s awesome to see this community of support and people gathering around the important issue of domestic violence.”
Next Gen Men is a national not-for-profit organization that promotes, healthy relationships, and gender equity in schools, communities, and workplaces in order to redefine what it means to “be a man”.
Valley says the most healthy way of getting involved and making a change for men comes in situations like Wednesday’s event, where information can be shared freely and openly.
“A lot of times we don’t always see men involved in these conversations. Sometimes you see things like anger management problems, so it’s kind of like men are seen as part of a problem that’s happening and not necessarily part of any sort of solution, or ways they can be involved in positive ways in social change.”
Valley adds events like Breakfast with the Guys should be the starting point for anyone to get involved, and hopes it will provide the springboard for healthy conversations in all aspects of life.
“It’s a social issue, and it’s not going to be solved through individual change programs and things like that. It’s going to be solved by people coming together, and walking together as a society and a community.”
Members from the Grande Prairie RCMP, EMS, fire department, city council as well as a number of local sports teams all took in the event.
For the first time, Odyssey House will also be holding an evening event to go along with Breakfast With the Guys, as “Conversation With the Guys” will place November 27th at 7 p.m. at The Crown & Anchor Pub.
According to the Family Violence Death Review Committee, there were 166 deaths in Alberta due to domestic and family violence between 2008 and 2017.