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Learning Pods for Black Families in Toronto survey

Learning Pods mean different things to different people. For some, it’s the game plan, for others, it’s a backup plan. Some will opt for Distance Learning Pods, some for School at Home Pods, some seek full time, others only supplementary, and others yet seek virtual or social pods. Whatever your family needs, you should feel empowered to attain.

Learning Pods are often designed by a group of parents who share resources. They tend to be fairly small in size, and people have leaned on this model for a variety of reasons. Due to the pandemic, those parents that have immuno-compromised children or family members are gravitating to this model including, others that have children who need to learn in a smaller environment. Some pods will follow the online school curriculum, and others will create or use their own. Learning Pods Canada is a Facebook platform that connects parents, teachers and others interested in forming their own pods. All costs are negotiated between the parents and the educational provider. In some cases, parents will do the teaching themselves and operate it more like a co-operative. You can learn more about learning pods here:

This survey is anonymous and confidential. The information gathered here will help determine if there is a need/desire for this educational model for black families.

Please take the following survey, your feedback is greatly appreciated

The survey was created by a group of concerns Black parents organizations based in the Greater Toronto Area, more info below:

Black Moms Connection (BMC) is an online global village and non-profit organization providing culturally relevant tools and resources to empower and educate the Black mother and her family. By Increasing the social, emotional, financial and well-being of the Black family–we will positively impact that Black community and the world at large.

Parents of Black Children (PoBC) is an advocacy group formed to support and address issues related to the success of Black students within schools. The group started as a collective of parents from York Region, but offers support and advice to families across the province of Ontario. We are working to ensure that our Black children can meet their full potential and achieve success in their educational outcomes.

The Black Daddies Club (BDC) is social grassroots organization, which creates a spaces for Black fathers, their families and Black communities in Toronto. The main goals of the organization are to change the image of the “absent Black father” that is prevalent in the media and to support Black men through collective discussion decreasing the isolation and increasing co-learning amongst these men.


This testimonial came from one of the attendees of the Speaking Our Truths: Conversations for Black men series.

“I have attended three of your discussions so far and it was the first time I had entered a man space to talk about masculinity. I loved it. It allowed me to get new perspectives on different topics and really helped me deepen my reflection around relationships. 

It helped me understand and define what is a relationship with a woman (the exclusive type). Today at 33, I believe it is not something you (only) let yourself carried into…it has to be a choice. Deliberate and intentional. Once I had made that choice it felt much easier projecting me in a long term relationship. It also felt easier dealing with the possibilities of being tempted to “cheat”. What is there to win/loose with one main partner and side partners? Is this worth it? There is no universal answer, but I firmly believe that both partners must agree on what that means and what they expect from their relationship. When these expectations are clear it’s easier to commit. We all know this is, and will remain, a main topic of conversation for many men and women, so for me coming at peace with this really helped me.

Thanks to the space you have created and other reflections (over some time though, this didn’t happen overnight) I was able to reach back to a very special woman that I used to date and made myself available to love and be loved, truly, for the first time. We are together today.

Again, thanks guys for offering this space for us.”


Speaking our Truths, conversations for Black men discussion series at Ujima House, Toronto (February 2020)

Ryerson University and Black Daddies Club co-presents “Returning Home” Online discussions

Greetings and Salutations, Community members 

Ryerson University WeSpeak research project and The Black Daddies Club have collaborated again to create the following virtual spaces for Black men.

You are invited to a two-part discussion for Black men entitled “Returning Home”. The conversation will take place on Zoom and we will be offering free registration for these events, space will be limited and will go quickly. 

Please see details below and share with your network.

How can we as Black men find a space for respite within ourselves as well as tap into other Black men, family and friends, and the broader community for support? Returning Home asks these questions. Centered on love, compassionate relationship building, and solidarity, we will also discuss community resources needed to support Black men’s general wellbeing.

Purpose of events:

Co-creating spaces for self-identifying Black men to talk about health, masculinities, and individual and community wellbeing, COVID-19 and beyond.

Event one:  The Gathering Place


Friday July 17th 2020

6pm to 8pm


This event focuses on Black men “returning home within ourselves”.

Event two: “Sharing. Feeling. Caring”

Date: Friday July 31st 2020

6pm to 8pm


This second event builds on the inward focus of the first event. Event two explores Black men “returning home with others”:

Goal of the events

Returning home centers love, compassionate relationship building, and solidarity. Also, what community resources are needed to support Black men’s general wellbeing?

Register below for one or both events

Thank you in advance,

Brandon Hay (MES, Business)

Founder of The Black Daddies Club

Thank you to our Father’s Day 2020 sponsors: Shelley Cares Foundation and Shea Moisture Canada

Black Daddies Club (BDC), would like to thank our sponsors Shelley Cares Foundation and Shea Moisture Canada, who helped us support more than 60 (plus) families during Father’s Day 2020. Your contributions not only supported fathers and their families connected to the Dadsfest Father’s Day event. Through our sponsors contribution we were able to help provide additional supports to families through African Food Basket and Black Creek Community Farm, who are doing phenomenal work around food security in the City of Toronto.

 The Dadsfest Father’s Day event was spectacular and special thanks to Ujima House (Young Potential Fathers) for asking BDC to collaborate with them on the project. Special thanks to all agencies and individuals who were involved, notable mentions to Dwayne Morgan, More Than A Haircut project, KnewMe book project, Dalton Higgins, Lions Circle, Benjamin Degraaf, Brother Kofi and the other individuals that played a collective role in putting together a very necessary event. 

Ryerson University and Black Daddies Club collaborates for Returning Home: An Online Discussion series for Black Men (July 2020)

Ryerson University (WeSpeak Research project) and Black Daddies Club collaborates for the second time in 2020 for “Returning Home: Online conversations for Black men (Summer edition)

Where are Black men going to process and digest the pain and uncertainty that has come up for a lot of folks during this Covid-19 pandemic?  

A lot of our places of congregation such as gyms, barbershops, places of worship has been closed and for a lot of us these places are our non-traditional therapeutic spaces where we go to heal. During this pandemic, a lot of us have lost these spaces where as Black men we could be intimate with other Black men with our stories and our experiences and not feel isolated. However, I recognized one of my strategies for coping during the Covid-19 pandemic was to numb myself and not give the opportunity to feel the pain that was seeping-in (regardless how much I tried not to feel it) over the weeks and months as there was a multitude of images online showing violence being placed on Black and Indigenous bodies around North America. 

Returning Home online discussions are follow up dialogues to the Black Men Speaking their Truths discussions, A three part series which was held in Toronto during the months January, February and March 2020. Returning Home summer discussion series will be held in the month of July 2020, here are the descriptions of the two discussions, hope you will be able to join the dialogue or tell a Black man who could benefit from the dialogue.

1st Dialogue Description: Finding home within ourselves

This event focuses on Black men “finding home within ourselves”. The themes that will be discussed here deal with men’s individual coping strategies including feelings, thoughts, behaviours, and actions. 

We will explore how we can promote and maintain our good best possible health and well-being regardless of current circumstances.

2nd Dialogue Description: Finding home with others

While the first event looks inwards, this one explores Black men “finding home with others”. Particularly, with other Black men, family and friends, and the broader community centered on love, compassionate relationship building, and solidarity. 

Also, what community resources are needed to support Black men’s general wellbeing?

Keep posted for more information in the coming weeks.

We are Black Fathers: Gone but never forgotten

Shamere Gentles was an extremely proud and loving father of 3 incredible children. There are few people in life that leave a lasting impression on you — the father in these photos was always charismatic, charming, uplifting and positive. He always had a smile on his face, motivating words and a humble attitude. We, his family, promise to always make sure his children know how much he loved them. Gone, but never forgotten. Happy Father’s Day, Shamere.