Changing The Lives Of Those We Touch................. One Person At A Time





If there is such a thing as a miraculous change in an individual, I can truthfully say that it was during my involvement with AVP that I began to
grow from a person filled with hate, anger, and despair, into a person who believes he too is responsible for the protection, preservation and
enrichment of humanity."

"When I viewed AVP through the windows, I thought it was a joke.  I didn't understand it and I didn't care to either.  After I went through AVP the first two days, I respected it to a point.  The people around me in the workshop made me feel it was something a person could really believe in.
You could let your guard down, express yourself and not be criticized or threatened in any way.  This was the first time I had experienced this.
Every time I would talk to someone there was some kind of threat coming back, except with AVP.  The people in the workshop made me feel so
comfortable; I could let my guard down.  This was one program that made me look at myself and at another person without disrespecting them.  That is how it has affected me."

"All my life, negativity has been around me.  I am negativity.  It has created me.  My thoughts were negative.  When I dealt with other people, 
it was in a negative realm, even when I tried to do what I thought was right.  AVP took out the negative and put in positive.  It gave me new avenues to view, new alternatives, other ways to see things.  Where as before, I saw everyone as a potential enemy.  Like most of us here, we came from a war zone, America is a war zone.  You have to look at life as a soldier, every day.  Now I sit back and look at the world in a different way with a different perspective.  I wasn't into male bonding, but now I look at that in a totally different light."

"Before AVP I only thought about violence, there was no second option.  AVP saved my life, it gave me another option.  The violence in my life got  worse and worse.  I spent most of my 11 years in prison in the hole.  I am not a sensitive, caring, understanding individual, but this program has really had an impact on me.  During my first basic as a trainer, there were a number of inmates there whom I had been very violent to before.  I knew if I was to  be a role model, to live AVP, I had to apologize to them for what I had done.   It was odd to apologize to someone I had defeated and who had pleaded for his life to me.  Some friends got out of maximum for having beat up some correctional officers and came to me anxious to get some action.  I explained to them that that type of activity was not me anymore.  You could see the hurt in their eyes and it hurts me because I know I cannot do it and I cannot allow them to do it.  It is a whole different world, it's different for me.  When I was a warrior, I fought with all the tools I could fight with.  I learned to be the best that I could be.  Now to be a warrior for nonviolence, I had to learn the tools of AVP."
"There is good in everyone.  We have not known how to see that good  without being perceived as weak and vulnerable.  AVP showed me how to reach down  and see it, to tap that guy that has always wanted to come out but was afraid  to come out.  When growing up, if you couldn't fight, you were a cast-a-way.   Being tough was the thing.  When I became an adult, I should have outgrown it, but it became a learned behavior and I carried it into my marriage and  I lost it all.  When I see someone now, I see them with a different perspective.  I'm looking for something good, whereas before I was looking at all the negative things in someone.  It's a great program."

"I went into the workshop as a pessimist and I came out a changed person.  I was alive, I was actually alive.  I liked what I saw in myself.  It was a
real high and I've been doing it for two years and I love that feeling;  and to see other people awakened in the workshops, to see their lives change."

"I had been in every group in the institution and they were all generic. They gave the same information.  There were very few solutions offered.
When you are given the information without the solution, you are still  lost. AVP gave me some concrete solutions."

"Thank you for showing us how to divert our violent attitudes into a positive and peaceful outcome.  Peace of mind is so hard to find these 
days.  By some miracle, I found it here in the AVP program.  I looked inside of  me and found a loving and caring me."



Compiled December 2006 by Joan Sweeney

One of the most relaxed workshops I have been on- 3/96 Kingston

I grew a lot, had a feeling of letting go of personal “stuff” and a group cohesiveness -3/96 King.

The workshop gave me new meaning to life and that there are alternatives to situations.  Transforming Power is embedded in my brain. 3/96 – Kingston

Taught me how to be more understanding of myself and others, to be caring, honest, to accept myself for what I am , to love myself – which I never did in my life.  It taught me how to deal with the problems I had in the outside world and now I feel when I am free again, I will do quite well and think in a positive manner. P4W 9/95

I would highly recommend it to any and all individuals that whether or not you own it to yourself to come and check us out…a most rewarding experience of your life. P4W 9/95

Willingness to encourage deep sharing. 6/00 Kingston

Transforming power is reaffirming.  Realize I already have the skills 1/00 Kitchener

Showed unity.  Helped me see my defects in my life Kingston 3/00

Ability to make all participants feel at ease in short time.- Kingston 3/00

I learned I was not alone in the world. 3/00 Kingston

We are all the same inside.  Learning is a never-ending process.  It can’t always be my way. “”

The team is there for each other and participants - T4F Kingston

I  can only change myself – T4F Kingston

Great to have everyone’s request looked after –99/Kingston

* Meet people where they are, with all their baggage – creates space for authentic meeting and sharing – 99/Kingston

Open mindedness. Nothing to what I thought it would be. 9/99 Kingston

*I really liked the way things were mixed – ie. deep, emotional, then exciting and funny . 9/99 Kingston

I liked the openness and ability to bond with each other 4/02 Fenbrook

I found the guy that was lost. 4/02 Fenbrook

I was touched in a way that made me look at some painful stuff.  I am at peace with it by moving through it and releasing some garbage.  4/02 Fenbrook

Found the program well organized, fun, reflective and extremely informative. GVI/ Basic. 9/06

Program was amazing and that I learned a whole lot out of it. 

*Good mixture of serious learning exercises and light fun exercises. GVI/Basic 9/06

Insightful, very supportive, healthy, fun, safe, informative.

Great learning and joyful experience – that’ what life’s all about.  Helped build confidence and self esteem – allowed me to practice listening. GVI 9/06

A good reminder to knowing as much as possible to make decisions.  The exercise that I liked  best was the one where I am the writer and director of my life.  Level 2 3/06 GVI

Got right down to solving issues – GVI 02/02

Weekend long, but fulfilling.   “”

Well planned out and lots of variety. Productive.’””

Playdoh- a nice way to express the fear inside you. “”

Can we have this on the street? in schools? Burtch/3/01

This tool will help me on the outside, plus it will wipe away some of my past Burtch 3/01

Lots of hugs Burtch 9/99

I was surprised by the chemistry and enthusiasm Burtch 11/01

Good mix of diversity of different types of people. “”

Fantastic! Great work! Hope you’re back (next time) because I will be 11/01 Burtch

The group was exceptional – I didn’t think I could have made it through without this group. “”

*Informative, 3 day course was crucial to bonding experience. “”

I was very insightful and fulfilling “”

*Sort of like a wake-up call, as in “look at yourself” 11/01

I am not invisible 11/00 Ottawa

Seeing all of us as having common needs “”

Taking more time to listen, instead of worrying about what I’m going to say, or how to say it. 11/00 Ottawa

I personally feel stronger and view some things differently “”

I liked the kindness 01/00 Warkworth

I liked being able to feel comfortable and open up and take to someone. “”

Liked that it also had fun involved. Beavercreek 08/02

I realized (how) to make my relationship with my ex better. “”

(I changed) my believing I was a failure. “”

*I didn’t like the fact that it was only 3 days long “”

(I will be able to follow this up with) a different outlook on people. “”

*Should be described as about finding alternatives to violence through the process of self-discovery. 01/98 Toronto

Leaned to identify and express feelings “”

Learned to trust one another and work co-operatively. Sudbury 10/97

Days kept uplifting and moving through energy of facilitators. “”

I think it’s in the next few days, weeks, months, that I’ll fully appreciate this workshop 11/95 Ottawa

Great, once you get past the expectations of a quick fix. “”

The team truly had the skills to facilitate, yet not control.  11/95 Ottawa

Sad to see it end “”

Very intense, challenging, sense of community 9/95 Montreal

Good interaction, passion. “”

Content very useful, helped me to change 2/95 Hull

Lots of support””

I was extremely impressed with workshop- enjoyed it and learned a lot 2/95 Hull

*The program really gave me some very good pointers an just made sense, but most of all, how to transform power to resolve situations calmly 2/95 Hull

Addressed the real issues, shoed ways to avoid violent situations. 10/94 Hull

Found out a  lot about myself “”

I learned how to put the new  tools I learned into use, in a positive way. “”

Provided useful life skills T4F 11/93 Ottawa

Trust and community were very valuable 10/93 Level 2 Ottawa

Major strength was quickness of sharing 7/00 Kingston

Facilitators carried the process with skill and insight 7/00 Kingston

*I learned a  lot about myself and how I have hung on to dysfunctional beliefs. “”

I am more of a man than I thought 01/99 Guelph CC.

I learned how to control my inner-self and learn how to respect myself in a different way “”

I learned that my gut feeling around violence is correct and that I need to respect and follow *through on my feelings concretely and that doing that means acquiring and practicing skills. 01/99 Guelph CC.

I have had the best 3 days in my life. – 10 year old, 10/03 Harriston Public School

This is the best life experience I’ve ever experienced in my life “”

If this was a group at my school I would join for sure! It’s too bad that you have to go! “””

I enjoyed the experience tremendously and I have been changed as have my class.- teacher/ Public School, Owen Sound -01/005

Emotionally uplifting. Bath 06/99/Basic

Engaging our imagination in solving problems ( was a strong point) “”

The openness and willingness of everyone to SHARE- this also reflects on the leadership of the facilitators. “”

The smooth flow of the entire process.””

Heart too full to express “”

I learned a lot about myself I did not know about. “”

How to accept people for who they are. “”