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
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
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
Transforming power is reaffirming. Realize I already have the skills 1/00
Showed unity. Helped me see my defects in my life
Ability to make all participants feel at ease in short time.-
I learned I was not alone in the world. 3/00
We are all the same inside. Learning is a never-ending process. It cant 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 everyones request looked after 99/
* 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
*I really liked the way things were mixed ie. deep, emotional, then exciting and funny . 9/99
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 lifes 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 youre back (next time) because I will be 11/01 Burtch
The group was exceptional I didnt 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
Seeing all of us as having common needs
Taking more time to listen, instead of worrying about what Im going to say, or how to say it. 11/00
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.
I realized (how) to make my relationship with my ex better.
(I changed) my believing I was a failure.
*I didnt 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
Leaned to identify and express feelings
Learned to trust one another and work co-operatively.
Days kept uplifting and moving through energy of facilitators.
I think its in the next few days, weeks, months, that Ill fully appreciate this workshop 11/95
Great, once you get past the expectations of a quick fix.
The team truly had the skills to facilitate, yet not control. 11/95
Sad to see it end
Very intense, challenging, sense of community 9/95
Good interaction, passion.
Content very useful, helped me to change 2/95
Lots of support
I was extremely impressed with workshop- enjoyed it and learned a lot 2/95
*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
Addressed the real issues, shoed ways to avoid violent situations. 10/94
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
Trust and community were very valuable 10/93 Level 2 Ottawa
Major strength was quickness of sharing 7/00
Facilitators carried the process with skill and insight 7/00
*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
I have had the best 3 days in my life. 10 year old, 10/03
This is the best life experience Ive ever experienced in my life
If this was a group at my school I would join for sure! Its too bad that you have to go!
I enjoyed the experience tremendously and I have been changed as have my class.- teacher/ Public School,
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.