Christine Diep is a Grade 9 student at William Lyon Mackenzie Collegiate. She lives in the Jane-Finch neighbourhood, but goes to a school that's 40 minutes away because of its special math and science program.
Christine is not easily intimidated. She says starting high school in a neighbourhood so far from home was no big deal.
Jane-Finch is shorthand for a neighbourhood that's bounded by Steeles Avenue to the north, Keele Street to the east, Sheppard Avenue to the south and Jane Street to the west.
It's also shorthand for a community that has problems. Headline-grabbing gang violence and youth crime have contributed to the image of a community that is desperate and dangerous.
In recent years, the mayor's office and community groups have targeted Jane-Finch as a priority neighbourhood that needs extra support, especially for the young people who live there.
But that's not all Jane-Finch is about. It's one of the most diverse neighbourhoods in the city. Six out of ten people living there were born outside Canada... and that's no accident.
In the 1960s, city officials deliberately designed the neighbourhood to be a place to house Toronto's swelling immigrant population. But the services available have not kept up with the demand by thousands of immigrants who continue to pour into the city.
Despite these challenges, people who call Jane-Finch home are committed to building a strong community.
- en françaisToronto, la mosaïque
- Pour voir les récits des participants francophones.
- in depthToronto's Mosaic: A Reality Check
- In March 2008 we brought you our first series on Toronto's cultural mosaic.
- special thanksSony Canada
- Cameras for Toronto's Mosaic were provided by Sony Canada.
Meet the Participants
- Christine Diep
- Christine Diep is a Grade 9 student who lives in the Jane-Finch neighbourhood.
- Danusha Jebanesan
- Danusha was drawn to the story of a classmate who won't allow challenges to get him down.
- Chayanika Sonnadara
- Chayanika joined this project because she has always wanted to be a journalist.
- Drexler Reuben Ogbeifun
- Drexler Ogbeifun brings us the story of Zya Browne, who has lost friends to gang violence.
- Atsede Tadesse
- Atsede is an ambitious and outgoing Grade 12 student at Cedarbrae Collegiate Institute.
- Deshawna Kitson
- Deshawna is happy in Rexdale because people are working hard to make it a safer place.
Three of our French-speaking students also prepared English versions of their reports. More reports in French are available at http://www.radio-canada.ca
- Nadine Tkatchevskia
- Nadine is a quadrilingual vegetarian who wants to do some good in the world.
- Alison Vicrobeck
- Alison has a passion for journalism. She is the editor-in-chief of a student newspaper.
- Charlotte Débois
- Charlotte was born in Switzerland. She loves music and making people happy.