Ben Torry was in Grade 7 when he first participated in Peer 2 Peer, a peer preventative education program organized by staff at Collingwood Neighbourhood House.
Six years later, he continues to volunteer with the program—even after recently graduating high school.
“Back then, I was doing it because I was like, ‘Oh fun, I get to do stuff,’ said Ben. “Now I think as I’m maturing, I’m starting to understand the meaning of the work.”
The meaning, he said, is helping others understand a range of social issues.
“For lots of the kids, it’s like a culture shock,” explained Ben. “Their eyes are just being opened to this flaw in the system or this problem that we have in the world.”
For Ben, he said he felt similarly when he was a participant in the program and eventually, a facilitator.
Despite learning curves, he stuck with it and considers Peer 2 Peer to play an important role in his life. Ben even credits the program for helping him recognize one of his life goals: social work.
“It’s just made me realize how important this kind of work is in people’s lives,” he said.
To learn more about Peer 2 Peer, visit cnhpeered.wordpress.com.