Program News

Where can you see a knight in shining armour, Captain America, and a Storm Trooper all in one room? At the annual Spooktacular, of course!

Notebooks. A fresh pack of pencils. New gym clothes. These are things many kids look forward to picking out before the start of the school year – and that also help them get the most out of their education.

On August 19, twenty-one newly-certified Retail Associates graduated from New Circles’ youth retail skills program after seven weeks of learning and more than 45 hours of work experience in GLOW.

“No young person should be held back due to financial barriers.” These are the words of 18 year-old Vicky Vo, a recent high school graduate and aspiring neurologist

In June, Sheqofah and her daughter Nazanin sat down with New Circles to share their family’s settlement journey.

It may be the hot, hazy days of summer but 20 energetic and enthusiastic young people aged 15-18 are spending their days learning the ins and outs of retail and customer service.

Check out this student-produced video from Ali Jiwani, highlighting the experiences of some of our teen Prom Boutique shoppers.

Gift baskets from donor familyMany of New Circles’ clients and donors come from Toronto’s Muslim community. Eid al-Fitr is one of the most significant holidays in the Muslim calendar. Occurring on July 5 this year, this holiday marks the end of Ramadan, the Islamic holy month of fasting.

Three years ago New Circles’ recently-hired Executive Director Alykhan Suleman met with key volunteers and funders to brainstorm the next step in the organization’s evolution.  His vision was to use the clothing bank GLOW (Gently Loved Outfits to Wear) as a platform to offer training in retail skills, noting, “Developing employable skills is an investment we can make to provide longer term solutions for our clients.” 

Richeline, Retail Foundations student, tours GLOW with Mario Gravelle, The Counselling Foundation of Canada

New student Richeline and Counselling Foundation's Mario Gravelle tour GLOW“I’m looking for a job but I don’t have any Canadian experience,” said GLOW volunteer Richeline, who is among the first cohort of participants to enroll in our new Retail Foundations course.  

Ali Jiwani, surprise guest, interviews JenniferSpring came early for New Circles on Tuesday, March 1st.  About 50 die-hard supporters showed up at 6:30am to welcome BT’s Live Eye host Jennifer Valentyne and help launch the 2016 Prom drive for our 9th Annual Prom Boutique.

A number of special guests joined us as well:

New Circles Community Services is pleased to announce the receipt of a $248,500 grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) to support its core program GLOW (Gently Loved Outfits to Wear).

A wonderful celebration at Centennial College took place this month to honour 10 new graduates from our Business Office Skills program, offered in partnership with the college and Goodwill Industries. Michelle deCoste, the Dean of Continuing Education and Alykhan Suleman, our Executive Director, were joined by Deputy Mayor Denzil Minnan-Wong, who brought greetings on behalf of the Mayor, to celebrate this accomplishment.

In response to the humanitarian crisis, New Circles has opened its doors to welcome Syrian refugees arriving in the City of Toronto. Working with Lifeline Syria and other partner agencies, we have made a commitment to provide free clothing to the refugees for up to two years.  Not only will families receive quality clothing, they can also access social programs, language tutoring and training opportunities offered at no cost by New Circles.

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New Circles' GLOW clothing service is the largest clothing bank in Toronto. We help 12,000 people of all ages annually.