PACT URBAN PEACE PROGRAM, TORONTO

History & Time Line

Redwood Shelter/Rotary background (1987-1993)

In 1987, David Lockett and Dan Cornacchia became charter members of the Rotary Club of Parkdale with a vision to build a shelter for domestic violence. In 1993, with the help of Rotary and the local community, The Redwood Shelter opened its doors to help victims of family violence. David was the founding President of the Redwood Shelter and Dan was the Treasurer.

Redwood provides the counselling and support necessary for those struggling with abusive relationships and their children to rebuild their lives and move forward, including free and confidential sessions in 20 different languages that foster independence and build self-esteem.

CFPFV established and PACT is born (1995)

Then in 1995, based on their experience with the Redwood Shelter and the realization that the only truly effective way to combat violence is to address its root causes, David and Dan decided to raise money and awareness to create programs that eliminate violence and create massive social change. The resulting charity was called The Canadian Foundation for The Prevention of Family Violence. Its mandate – to leverage the entire community to fund programs that reduce violence in our homes and our communities. The PACT Urban Peace Program is the flagship program of the Foundation.

Restorative Justice Begins in the Youth Courts – Scarborough  (2001), Metro West (2003), 311 Jarvis (2004), and Newmarket (2005) 

Modelled after an innovative program from Sparwood, B.C. developed by an RCMP Officer named Jake Bouwman and a defence lawyer named Glen Purdy, and with the full support of the Assistant Crown Attorney at the Scarborough Youth Court and early judicial supporter of PACT, Rick Blouin (now a sitting Judge in Newmarket), PACT launched its first program, a Restorative Justice (RJ) based Victim-Offender Conferencing program in 2001. The program was designed as a meaningful and cost effective diversion option for the Court that allowed mostly first time offender youth to have their cases resolved outside of the traditional justice setting in a community based restorative process called a Resolution Conference. This Conference allowed all those involved in the incident to get clarity around what happened, the charged youth to hear from and apologize to their victims and most importantly for them to take responsibility for their actions, with the ultimate goal of coming up with an acceptable “resolution agreement” that worked towards healing the harm that had been caused and doing the best to restore things back to how they were before the incident occurred.

With their successful RJ based mediation program running in Scarborough helping hundreds of young people in conflict with the law deal with their charges within the community, PACT went on to expand the Program across the GTA and into the Metro West (2003), 311 Jarvis (2004), Newmarket and Brampton youth courts over the next few years.

Introduction of LifeSkills Community Service Projects (2005)

As PACT was busy helping youth deal with their charges in the community and outside of the traditional justice system it soon became apparent that there were not enough opportunities for youth to perform meaningful community service hours that were part of many resolution agreements and so they started PACTCooking and then PACTFilm etc

  • PACTCooking and PACTFilm (2005),
  • PACTForestry and PACTRocks (2006)
  • PACTMagic (2007)
  • PACTFarm (2008)
  • PACTBuild and Grow to Learn Gardening (2009)
  • PACTFashion (2010)
  • PACT Haunted Theatre (2011)

LifePlan Coaching launches in the Youth Courts- Scarborough, Metro West and 311 Jarvis (2006) , Newmarket and Brampton (2008)

PACT establishes strategic friendship with the YMCA providing home for many lifeskills projects and LPC coaching program (2007)

PACT partners with individual Schools (film/cooking at Sir Sanford Fleming/West Humber and RJ conferencing at Henry Carr etc..) (2007)

PACT rebrands from “Youth Crime Reduction Program” to “Urban Peace Program” to reflect broader urban peace mandate of prevention (2009)

PACT provides RJ training to Safe Schools and staff across the TCDSB (2009)

PACT formally partners with the TDSB and Grow to Learn Gardening takes root (2009)

PACTFilm goes to New Zealand (2010)

PACT partners with John Howard Society expanding LifePlan Coaching to Belleville Youth Court (2011)