Speakers

Testimonial2

Meet Connie Jakab

connie studio white

We don’t send the hurting away from us… we bring them closer

Connie is the Owner of Movement With A Message, Village, and the Director of National Hope Talks. She brings 20+ years of working in resiliency to her talks and has experienced mental health issues in her own family and has found tools to overcome and thrive. Connie speaks to how community can heal mental illness and HOW we bring the hurting closer.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Connie speaks to the “P” of hope as a plan.


Meet Steve Osmond

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Reconnecting With Meaningful Values

Steve is a business coach who cares about today’s mental health crisis and knows there is the possibility to overcome incredible odds when our values and habits are aligned.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Steve speaks to the “H” of hope as a plan.


Meet James Noble

James Noble is an African-Canadian rapper, singer, song writer who brings real lyrics and raw energy to stages all over North America. He desires to see Hope come through his music.


Vahen King

Vahen King

Contagious Courage

Choosing courage and overcoming obstacles. At the age of 23, one week after the engagement to her husband, Vahen developed Transverse Myelitis, a virus that left her physically disabled and dependent on the use of a wheelchair. Although Vahen portrayed confidence as she was trying to cope as a person with a disability, her “new normal” was facing feelings of self-doubt and exclusion. Reaching a point of desperation, she realized that she had a choice to make, to be paralyzed by fears and insecurities or push forward.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Vahen speaks to the “O” of hope as a plan and finding courage.
Visit GoingFather.org


Meet Akeem Haynes

Perseverance

Akeem is a two time Olympian, bringing home bronze from the 2016 Olympics. He is a published author of two books and the founder of the Faith Over Fear Foundation. Moving to Canada at a young age, his family experienced poverty and adversity. He struggled in school but found sports gave him a way to learn how to never give up despite the odds.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Akeem speaks to the “O” of hope as a plan and finding courage.


Adam Gilfillan

Adam Gilfillian

“Your Story”

Making sense of our story is important. People need to feel seen and understood. Our lives are stories that are being written, but unfortunately not always being shared. This talk encourages students to tell and discover the stories of the students around them.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Adam speaks to the “E” of hope as a plan.


Meet Sheldon Penner

Being Inclusive

Sheldon was born healthy, but three days after his birth he stopped breathing which led to brain damage and cerebral palsy. Sheldon can’t speak with his mouth, but with technology, he speaks about inclusion and how belonging creates resilience and hope.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Sheldon speaks to the “P” of hope as a plan.


Meet Greg Denie


Greg Denie is a Canadian-based spoken word artist and arts-educator Greg Denie (AKA Poet Reason). As a poet, motivational speaker and arts-educator, Greg Denie is able to foreground his own personal history, his relationship to loss, personal struggle and pain in order to give his poetry and speeches the sense of authenticity, humility and humanity that allows him to connect with audiences all over the world. Greg is a poet and speaker who believes that the power of a well-told, honest story can be a tool for personal and communal transformation.

Greg’s Dare To Hope Assembly covers all aspects of our HOPE Plan in spoken word format.


Meet Alex Brown (Aleckay)


Alex was a troubled youth in his school days, getting into fights, skipping classes, hanging with the wrong crowd. After dropping out of school 3 times, he realized that he had to make a change. It was at this point that he started to pursue his love of music. Music helped him begin to develop discipline and habits that now have the attention of youth in assemblies everywhere. Young men relate to his story and find hope to know they can create good habits for a bright future as well.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Alex speaks to the “H” of hope as a plan.


Meet Andrew Neufeld


Andrew Neufeld is a Registered Clinical Counsellor, Executive and Leadership Consultant, and mental health advocate. He operates out of the foundational belief that there are no hopeless cases, and if we want to see change, we have to make it happen in community. He uses his own journey through mental health to inform his client-centred, empathy-focused work with clients through his practice at Alongside You, as well as his work with corporate and non-profit organizations.

Our National Hope Talks is about not just hoping things will get better, but looking to HOPE as a plan.

  • H – HABITS
  • O – learning how to OVERCOME
  • P – getting the right PEOPLE around us
  • E – learning to find EXPRESSION

Andrew speaks to the P of hope as a plan.


Meet Cathy Lumsden


Cathy Lumsden, registered psychotherapist, business coach, author, and international speaker has over 30 years of touching thousands of individuals lives. She has her own private practice in psychology and provides life and business coaching at Rhapsody Strategies.

Cathy is the author of two books – “The Best Advice Your Mother Never Gave You”, and one for children, “Debugging Those Bad Thoughts”. Cathy was the host of a successful TV show called, “The Best Advice”, focusing on topics such as domestic violence, mental health, bullying, stress management, and separation/divorce.

To purchase Cathy’s books visit cathylumsden.com
Cathy’s Keynotes and Workshops for Schools and Teachers include:

  • Brainsense: A New Language to Prevent and Manage Mental Health
  • Debugging Those Bad Thoughts
  • Emotional Intelligence in the Schools
  • The Young and the Anxious: Managing Anxiety
  • Does Technology Cause Loneliness?

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