Who We Are
Friends In Toronto Community Service (F.I.T) is a non profit, community based, charitable organization with a mission to break the cycle of poverty by inspiring and empowering communities.
We provide crucial services to children, youth, women and families across Toronto and the Greater Toronto Area (GTA). We do this through a combination of Arts, Education, Leadership, Sports & Recreation, professional counselling and Training services.
We offer support, inspire change, and present opportunities helping people realize and create possibilities for themselves.
Our services range from Afterschool & Educational programs, Community Training & Development, Family & Parenting services; Youth Justice & Empowerment; Employment services and Advocacy.
The foundation of our work is about creating Focused, Involved and Transformed communities.
Friends In Toronto Community Service (F.I.T) has provided programs and services to marginalized communities for over a decade. Working with families, children and youth to create a sense of hope, purpose and direction in their lives.
The organization began as a small group of community residents who were concerned with the growing levels of violence, crime, poverty and its impact within their community, Jane – Finch and The Greater Toronto Area.
Recognizing that in the communities most affected by poverty there were high levels of crime and violence; unemployment, Poor educational outcomes and a lack of community engagement. F.I.T began to engage other residents around the issues of Youth Engagement, Education and Building Community Capacity. We developed a strong resident led philosophy and began to mobilize across the community, focusing on the importance of residents having a platform to be the narrator of their own stories and participants in creating solutions. F.I.T. grew from a group 7 to a coalition of over 65, including community organizations, stakeholders and educational institutions such as York University.
Through our strong community engagement strategy, FIT became the first organization within the York - West , Jane - Finch community that was able to bring together gang involved youth for a Mediation Conference, to strategize for safer communities. This was a success for FIT, and led to the development of a strong youth engagement policy, which we would later utilize to train local community groups and organizations.
The organization incorporated in 2004 with a mission to inspire and empower people through programs that focus on leadership, education, recreation and community building.
Today FIT Community Service provides a variety of programs designed to build skills and restore hope within communities most impacted by poverty.
To inspire and empower people to break the cycle of poverty
Creating communities in which individuals are empowered as leaders, breaking the cycle of poverty through education, empowerment and community engagement.
- Community development & Capacity-building
- Community safety & Healing
- To provide educational, cultural, recreational, and social development programming for children, youth, adults and families affected by poverty
- To provide opportunities for youth empowerment and civic engagement
Our ValuesQuality: We are committed to excellence in all our programs and services.
Respect: We deal with all individuals in a fair, honest, and respectful manner.
Possibility: We believe in the capacity of people to overcome life's challenges.
Diversity: We respond to diversity in the community through our commitment to provide services that recognize and respect our differences.
Accountability: We uphold the public's trust through responsible management of our resources and a commitment to social justice.
BREAKING THE CYCLE of POVERTY
Research shows that there are approximately 1 in 10 Canadians, including 1 in 10 children and 1 in 4 First Nations children living in poverty. Click here for details. The World Health Organization has declared poverty as the single largest determinant of health.
The World Health Organization has declared poverty as the single largest determinant of health. The effects of poverty are far reaching, and touch all people in society. Evidence tells us that the effects of poverty and inequality cause worse social and health outcomes for everyone in society – not just those at the bottom.
This means that as a society, not only are we paying for poverty in actual numbers, but there is also a cost to the wellbeing of the community as a whole as well.
Many people cannot understand what it’s like to live in Canada and experience Poverty, so at FIT we worked with our participants to create understanding of how poverty is affecting our community.
What poverty looks like:
How we are making a difference