A Good Home, Tiffany Ford

Running at Home – TIFFANY FORD

I often write about people’s love for their homes, and sometimes about love of country. Today I’m writing about a young woman who is running a fierce election campaign to represent the part of Toronto that’s been her home for her entire life.

To do so, she has to defeat candidates who are older and more established.

~~

Blog Photo - Isabel and Co
Isabel Bassett, 2nd from right

My friend Isabel has a knack for bringing different kinds of people together.

I was at a lunch at her home a couple years ago when she asked: “Have you met Tiffany?”

I hadn’t, so off I went to say hello. And the more we talked, the more impressed I became.

Blog Photo - Tiffany Ford CU

At 36 years old, Tiffany Ford has a calm and confident presence often associated with a much older person. Already a successful trustee for schools in her area, she helped to increase both funding for her area’s schools and the power of the parents’ voices.

But Tiffany puts more emphasis on the needs and strengths of her community than on blowing her own horn. 

“A lot of people are not listening to our community,” she says. “They are acting on presumptions, often negative stereotypes.”

Blog Photo - Tiffany Ford in front of apartment building

Ward 7 — in the northwest part of the city — is striking in its diversity, from extreme wealth to extreme poverty, from the well-established to newcomers.

“It’s not all gun violence and bad schools,” Tiffany says. “That’s part of it, but there’s a lot more to our community. For example, we have a  university here. We’re a diverse community.”

Blog Photo - Tiffany knocks at door

You can hear the pride, passion and protectiveness in her voice when she says “our community”. For her, this is home.

“It’s the only home I know,” she points out. “I was born here, raised here, and never left.”

And now, she is running to represent her home area — Ward 7 — on city council. Her rivals include powerful, well-known and well-funded candidates. But Tiffany believes she can do a better job representing her community than any of them. 

Blog Photo - Tiffay on porch

“Living, growing up and working here — seeing the community from the inside — I am able to critically analyze issues through a lens that others can’t. 

“I also have a deep passion, a deep love for my community. It makes me want to inspire the people around me to have a strong sense of belonging here, to help them bring about change.” 

Blog Photo - Tiffany and supporters

Tiffany wants more affordable housing and childcare in the area, but also puts a big emphasis on economic development and accessible transportation.

Since we first met, the more I’ve seen of Tiffany Ford, the more convinced I am that she’s destined to be a great leader. I’m not the only one.

Blog Photo - Tiffany with bullhorn

Recently, Isabel Bassett and Velma Morgan hosted a reception for Tiffany.  An impressive diversity of women and girls of various ages, ethnicities and professions, along with student volunteers, came out to support her. 

Blog Photo - Tiffany with Isabel, Velma and Students Gurleen and Shntia

Blog Photo - Tiffany and Lauren

When Tiffany addressed us, when she talked about why she is running to represent the community, you could have heard a pin drop.  Hers is a refreshing combination: expert knowledge of her community, confidence in its future, and the certainty that she must — and will — be the one to represent it.

To say we were impressed and uplifted would be an understatement.

~~

To find out more about Tiffany and her campaign, please visit: 

https://tiffanyford2018.ca/

 

 

 

 

Advertisements
Acts of Friendship, An Honest House, Book Reviews

No-One Is An Island

“In our view, An Honest House should be required reading for everyone.”  

Isabel Bassett, former government minister and CEO of TV Ontario and Ernie Eves, former premier of Ontario, wrote those words about my second book, An Honest House

I’m sharing their moving words here. For one thing, it allows me to salute Isabel and Ernie for supporting emerging talent, as well as ambitious and accomplished individuals from many fields.

Blog Photo - Isabel and Co
l-r: Tiffany Ford, Djanka Gajdel, Isabel Bassett, Cynthia Reyes

It’s often the little things people do that make a difference, isn’t it?

Telling others about someone’s new endeavour.

Bringing diverse groups of people together to meet and perhaps collaborate on a project.

Blog Photo - Ladies at Isabel gathering
Left: Mickey Palha. To my right: Heather Peterson and Silvia Wynter 

Or buying an author’s book and reviewing it. 

Bravo, Isabel and Ernie!

Here’s their review:

Image of "An Honest House: A Memoir Continued", by Cynthia Reyes

“As I read through An Honest House, I kept thinking that what happened to Cynthia Reyes could happen to any of us.

I wondered how all of us would  cope if we were stripped not only of our health but of our identities as successful, involved leaders and found our new selves to be  pain ridden, physically altered, and anxiety prone among other things.

Would we have the indomitable spirit that kept Cynthia fighting to regain her former self and role in life despite her enormous frustrations adjusting to her injuries following her accident?

How did she keep going?  

How did she find her new role?

Three of the many take-aways in this inspiring book stand out for me and my partner, Ernie Eves, who experienced loss of a different kind when his only son was killed.

The first, of course, is Cynthia’s determination, however wavering at times, to come back both physically and professionally.

Then, over time, as she realizes she cannot turn back the clock, there is her gradual recognition and appreciation of  the overriding value of what she has already: her supportive, caring husband, Hamlin, her two daughters and their families, her friends, faith  and community and, not to forget, her enchanting nineteenth century Ontario farmhouse.

The third inspiring finding for us is that Cynthia has managed to continue to play a significant role in Canadian life by writing books that show how someone can create new meaning and purpose in their lives, however futile it might seem at first.

Given the challenges all of us face at some point in our lives, especially as we suffer the debilitating side effects of aging, we can learn from Cynthia Reyes’ courage, determination and spirit.

In our view, An Honest House should be required reading for everyone.”

— Isabel Bassett and Ernie Eves.

~~~

Thank you, Isabel and Ernie. I share the credit with three extremely caring editors, a dogged publisher, great beta readers, my loving family and friends. 

I’m grateful for all of you who extend yourselves to help others — especially in tough times.