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Official Launch and Community Celebration of Next Gen Photography

Updated: Dec 4, 2023

Hope for Community Development launches Next Gen Photography in Kitchener

On Saturday, November 4, 2023, Hope for Community Development was glad to launch the Next Gen Photography, a social enterprise providing employment to our Kitchener youth through the art of professional photography services in the Kitchener-Waterloo region. Congratulations to the 12 youth who completed the Advanced Entrepreneurship program and graduated. It wouldn’t have been successful without our partner, The Community Company, supporters from far and wide and funders who invested in our program.

Funding to support our Advanced Entrepreneurship Program and Next Gen Photography Project includes a Community Funds from the Cooperators, the Waterloo Region’s Upstream Fund as well as the Government of Canada’s Community Services Recovery Fund through the Community Foundations of Canada.

The Co-operators Community Funds supported organizations whose programming and services empower underserved youth (aged 16 – 34) and individuals with mental health challenges to progress along their path toward employability.

The Waterloo Region’s Upstream Fund was created to help address root causes affecting health and wellbeing. Together with the Equity Community Capacity Building Fund, those who are most impacted by systemic inequality are being prioritized to remove barriers and improve safety and wellbeing across Waterloo Region.

The Community Services Recovery Fund is an investment from the Government of Canada to support community service organizations, including charities, non-profits, and Indigenous governing bodies as they focus on how to adapt their organizations for recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.


During the event, Hope for Community Development’s youth leaders who were graduating from our Advanced Entrepreneurship Program shared their experiences during the 12 dynamic workshops, where they delved deeper into the world of business development and community impact. They also shared their vision for the Next Gen Photography business. Speeches were also given by government officials, partners and sponsors who have helped make the Next Gen Photography social enterprise a reality. Attendees learned that the project would continue to impact our youth every year. It was a great networking opportunity for team at Hope for Community Development, our partner, The Community Company, and supporters behind the success of the Next Gen Photography project.


Speakers included:

  • Karen Redman, Regional Chair of the Waterloo Region

  • Mayor Berry Vrbanovic, Mayor of the City of Kitchener

  • Fauzia Baig, Director of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, Region of Waterloo

  • Blessing Akpan, Director, Community Impact Waterloo Region Community Foundation

  • Trevor Charles, Executive Director, LiftOff by CCAWR

  • Justin Chan, Executive Director, The Community Company

  • Francess Dunhann, Executive Director, Hope for Community Development

  • Ralph Dagoseh, Founder, Hope for Community Development

Youth Speakers:

  • Leeandrae Brown

  • Luseni Kowai

  • Karmon Fofana

  • Fredlyne Kayee

Next Gen Photographers will cover your events, projects, and moments in Kitchener, Waterloo, Cambridge, and the surrounding areas. The Next Gen Photography project is building on Hope for Community Development’s ’s mission and success in building a world where everyone is empowered with the tools and opportunities to thrive and contribute to society.

As we continue to work hard to change the lives of marginalized youth and families through education, programming, and workshops.  We are eternally grateful for supporters and partners like you who always believe in the work that we do and have supported us throughout this journey. It will continue to get better with your never-ending support that enables us to work together to increase impact and build a better future for everyone. Though launching of the Next Gen Photography social enterprise project is complete, we need additional funds to continue to invest in this project and other programs. Help us inspire the next generation of photographers.


Next Gen Professional Photography services at Hope for Community Development will start in December 2023. Please keep an eye on Hope for Community Development’s Next Gen Photography website at and contact us via the website, and follow our social media accounts for updates. See recap of the event here


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