Community Conversations


Creating spaces to discuss topics that matter

We are committed to engaging meaningfully with the community. Community Conversations is a new initiative to encourage dialogue and discussions on topics that matter and are of keen interest to members of our community. These conversations will be held in a variety of locations across the GTA: cafés, libraries, community centres and anywhere that constructive dialogue can flourish. We hope to create welcoming spaces where people from diverse communities can gather and share their unique insights and experiences.

We hope to bring together the talents, spirit, energy, curiosity and interests of our diverse citizenry to promote inclusive, and inspiring dialogue on current local and global issues that could include history, ecology, the environment, arts, media, urbanism, health, poverty, current socio-economic and political issues, and a range of ideas and topics that inspire critical dialogue and engaging thoughts.

Community Conversations word-cloud eBook cover illustration | 2018-02-20

Complete a Community Conversations Application Form to get started.

Read more about our inaugural series of 16 events in our new Community Conversations e-Book.

Upcoming Conversations

What is a Guest? What is a Settler?
Date: Wednesday, March 6, 2019
Location: Curtis Lecture Hall B, York University
Time: 3-5 p.m.
Register now

Real Jobs, Living Wages
Date: Saturday, March 16, 2019
Location: Oakridge Community Centre
60 Pharmacy Ave, Scarborough
Time: 4-7 p.m.
Register now

Black Continental Africans in Canada: Exploring Culture, Identity, and the Immigrant Experience
Date: Wednesday, March 27, 2019
Location: Scadding Court Community Centre
707 Dundas Street West, Toronto
Time: 3-5 p.m.
Register now

Past Conversations

Date Topic Hosts Venue
October 28, 2018 Black Continental Africans in Canada: Black and Black African Diaspora Relation   Ghana Presbyterian Church, 51 High Meadow Place, North York
October 6, 2018 Remembering Dr. B.R. Ambedkar’s Ideology, Philosophy & Teaching Nivedita Das Kundu 519 Kaneff Tower, York University
April 14, 2018 Talking Climate Change: Challenges & Opportunities for Action Tyrone Hall Toronto Public Library, Wychwood Branch
(1431 Bathurst Street Toronto, ON)
March 2, 2018 Mapping out Muslims in Canada: Critical Debates in Academia and Beyond Nergis Canefe & Azeezah Kanji Auditorium – Noor Cultural Centre
(123 Wynford Drive, Toronto, ON)
February 24, 2018 “Black Panther”, Celebrating Blackness in the African Diaspora Sylvia Bawa Fort York Library - Toronto Public Library (190 Fort York Blvd, Toronto, ON)
November 23, 2017 Girls, Identity, Tweens and Teens Series
Part 3: Tweens, Teens and Social Justice
Natalie Coulter & Kisha McPherson York Woods Public Library
(1785 Finch Ave West, Toronto, ON)
November 2, 2017 Girls, Identity, Tweens and Teens Series
Part 2: Black Girls and Identity
Rowena Linton & Karlene Davis York Woods Public Library
(1785 Finch Ave West, Toronto, ON)
October 26, 2017 Girls, Identity, Tweens and Teens Series
Part 1:  What Does it Mean to be a Tween Girl
Natalie Coulter Regent Park Aquatic Centre
(640 Dundas St E, Toronto, ON)
July 7, 2017 Cuba en el Siglo XXI: Cultura e Identidad en movimiento/Cuba, XXI Century: Culture and Identity in Motion Julio Fonseca & Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano Toronto Public Library - Lillian H. Smith Library (239 College St, Toronto, ON)
June 22, 2017 The Summer of '77: How Emanuel Jaque's Murder Changed Toronto Gilberto Fernandes Gallery of the Portuguese Pioneers (960 St. Clair Ave West)
June 15, 2017 Tutti a tavola!  Italian Food Culture in Canada Roberta Iannacito-Provenzano Vaughan City Hall–Atrium (2141 Major Mackenzie Dr. W, Maple, ON)
June 6, 2017 Resourcing Student Debt Solutions for Strengthening Community Financial Capacity Brenda Spotton Visano YorkU-TD Community Engagement Center
May 11, 2017 A Conversation based on the Film: MPA - A Utopian Experiment Megan Davies Davenport-Perth Neighborhood Community Health Center (1900 Davenport Rd)
May 10, 2017 My Mind & Me: An introductory Mindfulness Workshop for Youth Marie-Jolie Rwigema The Spot (1 York Gate Blvd., 2nd Floor)
May 6, 2017 do we have freewill? Alexandru Manafu Studio 303, 401 Richmond Street West
April 20, 2017 Stories of Change: Narrative Practices for Critical Justice Work Harjeet Badwall York TD-Community Engagement Center
March 19, 2017 The Greek Immigrant Experience; Then and Now Sakis Gekas Pan Arcadian Federation of Canada House
450 Danforth Avenue
February 28, 2017 In Search of Community Emotional Well-being Wilburn Hayden & Farid Partovi Chaharlangi 2999 Jane Street Community Building
January 31, 2017 A Nation Divided: The November 1916 Battle of Athens and Greece’s Entry to Great War Sakis Gekas Danforth/Coxwell - Toronto Public Library
November 25, 2016 Youth, Higher Education and Community Engagement in the Portuguese Community Maria Dodman & Inês Cardoso Gallery of the Portuguese Pioneers

How Community Conversations Work

Conversation is a powerful tool that connects us and provides a unique opportunity for knowledge sharing, human growth and empowerment, and community building. Community Conversations are public, semi-structured and open to anyone who who is interested in the topic. To host a conversation, all you need are people, a topic and a place to meet!

Our events are held twice monthly during the Fall and Winter semesters, in cafés and community spaces across the GTA, and are approximately two hours in length (exceptions may apply). Each conversation is centered on a particular theme or an interesting question. Conversations will begin with the moderator who will lead the conversation with a 10-15 minute introduction to the topic, will monitor time, and who will gently encourage participation. Conversations may also feature guest speaker(s) to share their ideas, experiences and expertise on a specific topic. Essentially, conversations are intended to spark the exchange of ideas!

Start a Conversation

We are committed to building strong and inclusive communities and welcome the involvement and participation of the broadest group possible. To participate in a conversation, all you need to do is show up and talk. Apply now to host a conversation.

If you wish to suggest a topic, or provide feedback on one of our conversations, we invite you to contact us by email.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where do conversations take place?
Community conversations are held at familiar and inviting community locations, such as local coffee shop, café, restaurant, public-park, local library, organizations and community centers.

Why conversations and not lectures, workshops or seminars?
We aim to create an open space for the exchange of knowledge and where everyone is a learner. In these settings, everyone is encouraged to share their perspectives, thoughts and ideas, and not be dominated by experts.

Are conversations free and do I need to register?
Community Conversation events are free. Most events do not require registration; however, when a conversation does require advance registration it will be clearly indicated on our website or on posters announcing the event.

How long are the conversations?
Conversations are usually two hours in length.

Do I have to prepare in advance for a conversation?
No. these events are informal and do not require participants to prepare for a conversation. If you are interested in the topic, all you need to do is show up and participate – share your experiences, thoughts and ideas.

Apply Online

You are one step away from beginning a meaningful conversation. Complete a Community Conversations Application Form to get started.


Please provide your comments on the Community Conversation you have attended.