Twenty youth from across Toronto got to showcase their talents and creativity at Nike's Unsung Heroes design workshop on December 6 and 8.
The youth, selected mainly from Toronto Community Housing's YouthWorx summer employment program, worked closely with designers to create layouts and customize designs that reflect their fashion styles. The workshop was also a unique opportunity for the youth to meet and learn from emerging Toronto-based designers.
Nike's Unsung Heroes aims to bring together youth who are making a difference in their communities and who are interested in the fashion industry in order to share ideas and thoughts about their work. Here's what some of the youth have to say about their experience at the workshop:
Michael Lyon-Coombs, 20
"Shout out to Nike for giving me this opportunity. As a youth living in Toronto Community Housing, programs like YouthWorx has helped me achieve some of my goals and not to become another statistic in the city. The studio is a great space for me to customize my own gear and learn few things. The best part of this experience is designing my shoe. Seeing my nick name (Chin City) on the shoe is awesome… you know I will be wearing this shoe all over Toronto. I am happy to be part of the Nike studio. I would love to do this again."
Chris Otchere, 15
"YouthWorx has done so much for us since this summer. Through this experience, I learned to go with the flow, even though that could be a hard thing to do. We don't have much time for the customization so I have to come up with a design on the fly. I like how the studio staff are around to help us with our design. It's a fun way to engage youth. Some of the guys are saying they are going to wear their customized shoes and hoodies everyday over the next year. That's how happy everybody is… It's good to see everyone having fun!"
Daiquane Buchanan, 21
"This is a good space with good people. I am glad that I get to customize a few swags. For my shoe design, I incorporated the Toronto skyline and where I am from (Jane and Finch). It's like my fashion style… drippy! I also customized my hoodies using the Nike logo. The design is special because nobody has this design. I am so grateful to YouthWorx for connecting me with this opportunity. It’s very cool!”