HuffPost Canada closed in 2021 and this site is maintained as an online archive. If you have questions or concerns, please check our FAQ or contact support@huffpost.com.

york region

The question is, will people come back when the pandemic is behind us?
We write with respect to the saga at the York Region District School Board (YRDSB) over alleged Islamophobic posts by principal Ghada Sadaka. We join the parents who are deeply concerned about the mental and physical well-being of their children.
I am fading in and out of the conversation -- lost between the hum of the bus and the fact that it's after 10 p.m. On any regular night, I'd be getting ready to go to bed and thinking about school the next day. Tonight I'm trying to get out of -20 degrees Celsius and find us all a bed.
Each year, 360⁰kids -- an organization that provides a range of services to York Region's homeless youth -- encourages local community members to experience homelessness, just for one night a year. Last March, our group made it through some bone-chilling temperatures. I will do it again this year. For more than 300 youth in a region that's home to large detached homes and flourishing businesses, they've lost count of how many nights they've been homeless. It's an issue that doesn't get enough attention.
I can't truly explain how exhausting, challenging and incredibly cold this night was. I had been given a real-life scenario of a homeless youth as a part of 360°kids' 360°Experience. Our experience had us stepping into the shoes of a 16-year-old male, who was unsafe at home and had to leave quickly to save himself.
We can all sympathize with the new kid on the block. The sweaty palms. The scratchy throat. The familiar feelings associated with being in a strange environment, surrounded by people you have never met before -- like it's you against the world.