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Sarah MacLaren (left), executive director of Leave Out Violence – Nova Scotia, accepts the 2017 Strive Award from Dr. Michelle DowThe Halifax-based organization Leave Out Violence – Nova Scotia (LOVE) is the winner of the 2017 Strive Award. This is a long-awaited recognition for LOVE; the organization was also a Strive Award finalist in 2014 and 2015.
LOVE runs a number of programs for youth in Halifax, Dartmouth and in two First Nations communities. The LOVE team helps youth who have experienced violence; programs offered by the organization provide participants the chance to address mental health, addictions, poverty, sexual assault, racism, homophobia, transphobia and other issues. Staff also provide assistance with housing, education, career planning, and parenting advice.
“We are thrilled and honoured to have LOVE’s work recognized with this award,” said Jaime Forsythe, grant writer and program facilitator at LOVE. “In particular, it means a lot to us to have the funds going toward our regional leadership camp, which will bring together youth leaders from Halifax Regional Municipality, Sipekne’katik First Nation and Membertou First Nation.”
“This retreat is an exceptional opportunity, and an experience that stays with youth long after the retreat itself has ended,” said Ms. Forsythe. “A gathering of this type goes a long way toward contributing to the social determinants of health of our youth. This includes the formation of positive peer support groups, strengthened social support networks, development of skills, confidence and coping strategies, and improved mental health outcomes.”
“The connections youth make with their peers across the province can last for a lifetime.”
Doctors Nova Scotia created the Strive Award to recognize the important role volunteers play in improving the health of Nova Scotians. The award is accompanied by a grant; it is given annually to a Nova Scotia community group making innovative and strategic actions to support and promote health.