The Venosta train station was first build in the late 19th century by Edgar Berryman - Up the Gatineau! Volume 43, pg 64.
Être et Devenir / Be and Become started up under ACSADK Assn. in Kazabazua in 2011 with a federal Skills Link project, an employment program for out of school and work youth, funded by Service Canada; now we exist as a not-for-profit organization. With the need for a youth centre in this region, we were donated the train station in 2017.
Increase youth-community connections by developing and supporting community-based activities that encourage youth engagement and leadership to empower youth 9 to 34 years of age in their own development.
Through the operations of the Venosta train station, we aim to serve youth of the Outaouais region, while offering connections between them and travellers in general accessing the café — especially the users of the Véloroute, which is now the remaining link to the Trans Canada Trail. But our main focus is operating a safe and engaging haven for youth, with access to the Regional Youth Resource Centre on the second floor, and employment opportunities in the café and other social enterprises that develop in our ongoing operations.
Kevin Morris - Treasurer
Tara Schippers - Director
Maureen McEvoy - Co-President
Krystal Kosh - Co-President
Charles Kealey - Accounting
Sandra Shean - Secretary
Angèle Gagnon - Board Member
MEET THE TEAM
Hi! I’m Alysha “Leash”, Lafleur, I use they/them pronouns (he/him and the occasional she is okay). My family are settlers of this area on Algonquin land going back generations, we live mostly around Danford Lake. As a kid my parents worked in Ottawa, so I bounced back and forth, up and down the river, feeling like I didn’t fit in either place.
After graduation I ran away to the big city of Toronto, eventually ending up in Sudbury where I did my diploma in Social Service Work with an Indigenous specialization. When all is said and done I knew the beautiful nature and rural forests of home was where my spirit was, and I’m happy to be back. Striving for community has always been important to me, I’ve volunteered and worked at many community centers across provinces, but I hope to take what I’ve learnt about mental health and holistic wellbeing to positively impact our community and youth, as I know they will positively impact and teach me.
Hey I’m Jake! I’m 21 and currently taking a gap year from McGill studying psychology. I am passionate about music, fitness and mental health. I used to play college basketball. I was last employed as a preschool educator. Currently I am working at Be and Become to connect with youth, to share with and learn from them.
My name is Melanie, I’ve been walking this earth for 25 years. I’m Algonquin Anishinaabekwe from Kebaowek First Nation (Eagle Village), although I have never been to my reserve as my family moved away a couple generations ago. I was born and raised in one of our local communities, Kazabazua where I am now raising my own children. Since becoming a mother in 2020 my whole focus in life has changed, I finally knew where to drive my passion. I aspire to be the person I needed when I was growing up in a small rural community, creating a safe environment for our youth to feel, be and inspire them to be 100% themselves while nurturing their interests.
I’m so blessed to be a part of such a wonderful organization that has done so much to help me when I was growing up. I’m grateful now for this opportunity to “Pay it Forward” to the youth in our region.
Hello my name is Nikola,
I am a zen individual with a diploma in audio engineering and I have hands-on experience in event production.
My passion for mental health advocacy shines through as I serve as an influencer intern at Connexion.
My leadership of the Youth Voices newsletter showcases my dedication to amplifying young voices. Currently, I am making a lasting impact as a Youth Coordinator at Be and Become, guiding and empowering the next generation.