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Community steps up to fight cancer By Sylvie Berry of the Paris Star

Thank-you very much to Sylvie Berry and the Paris Star for the awesome article!

It isn’t always black and white in the world of politics.

Last week the nation was informed by NDP leader Jack Layton, that he would stepping down for a temporary leave of absence due to a second battle with cancer. Shortly after, rookie NDP MP for Hull-Aylmer in Quebec was highly supported as a replacement during Layton’s absence. Late last week, only days after the national announcement, a movement and fund raising outreach project was started at the grassroots level here in Brant County and Brantford. “It’s amazing how quickly people move when they feel the need to do something right,” says former NDP candidate for the Brant riding Marc Laferriere.

Upon hearing the unfortunate news, designer Lucas Duguid put together a ribbon and Jack Layton logo, which he donated to the Brant NDP office for the design of charitable T-shirts.

“There isn’t one family in Canada who’s not affected by cancer and seeing Jack struggle with this helps people connect that much more,” says Laferriere. “This is a very personal struggle and he’s exposing himself and sharing his story.” The T-shirts went on sale Friday, July 29 at Custom Colours T-shirts in Brantford. The shirts will sell for $18, with proceeds collected going to the Canadian Cancer Society in Layton’s honour.

Laferriere speaks highly of Layton and is hopeful and optimistic for a quick recovery. “He’s got a way of showing strength, optimism, drive and determination. He always seems to beat expectations and taking on battles he can’t win, then winning them,” says Laferriere. Since Laferriere took second place during the Brant riding elections this past spring, he’s maintained a presence in the community and continues to work and volunteer among other New Democrats.

“My inbox has flooded with well-wishes that I’m forwarding onto Jack. This certainly goes beyond politics, he’s got the community and country’s support.”

Laferriere also thinks highly of Layton’s chosen replacement, Turmel. While campaigning over the past two years, Laferriere recalls watching Turmel’s campaign closely as many of his immediate family members are her constituents in Aylmer. “Nycole has tons of experience, just not as an MP. She has a great deal of poise and experience and is very honest and upfront,” says Laferriere. “People who didn’t know her then, grew to know her well in only a few months. She has a lot of respect.”

Laferriere adds that with Layton’s absence, there’s no doubt the new members in parliament will rise to the occasion and perform well. “Jack’s integral to the party, but the individual members don’t strive to please their leader, but to their constituents. None of that’s changed.”

“It’s a young caucus with a great amount of bench strength and an amazing amount of staff behind the scenes, they’re all very capable.” Laferriere’s role in the community remains strong and his work with the New Democrats is never ending. He’s also continued his work as a social worker in Brantford and Brant County. For more information visit www.facebook.com/brantmarc and to order a T-shit call 519-756-3616 or e-mail marc@brantndp.ca. Shirts can be picked up every Friday at Custom Colours T-shirts in Brantford.

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Raising Support “For Jack” By Sean Allen of the Brant News

Big thanks as always to Sean Allen of the Brant News for the great coverage!

With the outpouring of support for federal NDP leader Jack Layton in his fight against cancer, members of the Brant NDP decided to turn that support into good.

“We wanted to do something to raise funds in Jack’s name,” Marc Laferriere said. “(We) had an idea for a ribbon that evolved into a T-shirt design. It’s a very simple design with a ribbon and it says ‘For Jack’ on the shirt.” Laferriere, who ran in this year’s federal election in Brant, and Brian Van Tilborg, the candidate in the coming provincial election, had their inboxes fill up in the days following Layton’s announcement that he would be battling a new bout of cancer. Laferriere said people were sending support and well-wishes across all political stripes so they decided to give people a way to raise money in the fight against cancer.

Lucas Duguid of local company Octopus Red donated the design to the Brant NDP and Custom Colour T-shirts came on board to print them. The proceeds will go to support the Canadian Cancer Society.

“There has been so much non-partisan support for Jack,” Laferriere said. “It’s universal. I don’t think there is a family in the entire country that hasn’t been affected by cancer.” The $18 T-shirts can be ordered by phoning 519-756-3616 or emailing marc@brantndp.ca. Once a week, Custom Colours T-shirts will print to the orders and the proceeds will then be sent to the cancer society.

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Tweetstock V is here!

Yet another amazing article by Sean Allen of the Brant News!

After filling the Sanderson Centre lobby to capacity and hosting Canada’s most recognized social media guru as the keynote speaker for Tweetstock IV last November, organizers of Brantford’s signature online networking event have set the bar high for future events.

Trevor Cherewka, Lucas Duguid and Josef Stevens don’t say they are trying to “top” the previous event with Tweetstock V on June 16.

“The event is maturing,” Cherewka said. “We’ve always had different themes and we are staying away from any redundancy.”

The tagline for Tweetstock V is “the art of the community” and Duguid said the 10 speakers lined up are going to touch on a range of relevant subjects from how to use social media for small business and how to affect change in your community.

The keynote speaker, Mark Kuznicki, is the creator of ChangeCamp, a collaborative process for solving difficult problems facing a community.

When the Toronto Transit Commission was looking for a new website, they ended up using a ChangeCamp model to develop the request for proposals to make sure it had the community’s input.

Julie Cole, from Mabel’s Labels, will also be presenting.

Cherewka said the Hamilton-based clothing label company for parents has recently been on the View and makes regular appearances on Regis and Kelly.

“That is what having Scott Stratten at Tweetstock IV has done for us,” he said. “Normally we would have to beg for people like that to come to Brantford, but now it’s just a mention of the fact Scott was here.”

Mabel’s Label has experienced enormous growth since taking its business to social media and the founders won the 2009 RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Award.

Tweetstock V will occur less than a year since the first event was held in July of 2010.

Duguid said Brantford has really welcomed the format for the event and has a real appetite for social media.

“In a real way we learned that if you build it, they will come,” he said. “We put 100 people in a room for the first event and I’ll bet 75 of them didn’t know why they were there. By Tweetstock IV we had 250 people all glued to the speakers’ every word.”

The event is gaining enough steam that Cherewka, Duguid and Stevens are able to start giving back. Proceeds from parts of the event will go to supporting the Glenhyrst Art Gallery, Arts After School Kids and the local food bank.

Brantford Tourism is also using Tweetstock V as a springboard to launch their own social media awareness campaign Love My Brantford.

Tweetstock V takes place June 16 at Freedom House Church. Tickets are available online from www.Tweetstock.ca or on Facebook.

The full list of speakers includes: Mark Kuznicki, Julie Cole, David Yoon, Deb Lowther, Marc Laferriere, Matt Scobel, Amanda Kinnaird, Josh Bean, Dave Carrol and Jason Dykstra.

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Tweetstock Turns One

This is what helped start the whole thing… fantastic article by the brant news and four amazing commercials by adam hislop of atomic spark featuring Chris Friel, Marc Laferriere, James Calnan and Lucas Duguid

Organizers of Brantford’s first “Tweetstock” say they want to make sure the city is ahead of the curve when it comes to social networking. Lucas Duguid and Trevor Cherewka are planning Brantford’s first-ever “tweet-up,” where users of Twitter and other social networking tools meet face-to-face, outside of the virtual realm.

Tweetstock takes place June 24 at the Piston Broke Pub starting at 8 p.m. The organizers hope the event will bring together creative minds in Brantford who have yet to connect. “Brantford has a lot of star power and it’s Brantford that doesn’t know about it,” Duguid said.

Both organizers own design companies: Duguid operates Octopus Red and Cherewka Tic Tok Media. They said Tweetstock will showcase how social media can be used. “We’ll demonstrate how to build your business, raise awareness for a cause and build your personal brand using these tools,” Duguid said. “This will be for experienced, novice or even interested users of social media.” Guest speakers will explain how social media helped them build their brand, with a social media twist, “Each speaker will have just 360 seconds to replicate the quick hit of social media,” Cherewka said.

The lineup includes mayoral candidates Chris Friel and James Calnan, NDP candidate Marc Laferriere and the organizer of the Hamilton 24-hour Film Festival, Martinus Geleynse. Duguid’s company designs 2007 Canadian Idol winner Brian Melo’s website and the performer will also be a special guest at the event. However, Melo won’t be performing. Those attending Tweetstock are encouraged to bring their smartphone, PDA or iPad to tell the world about Brantford and connect with like-minded locals. “If you come in with 100 followers on Twitter, we want you to leave with 200,” Cherewka said.

Duguid and Cherewka hope Tweetstock will become a regular event.

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Tweetstock V just around the corner

Comliments of the Brantford Expositor…

Even regular users of Facebook and Twitter have much to learn about the benefits of social media. So says Trevor Cherewka, who is organizing the next session of Tweetstock, to be held at Freedom House in Market Square Mall on June 16. Doors open at 4:45 p.m., with the event starting an hour later. “We’re still in the education phase,” he said. “Everybody knows what Facebook is, but they don’t know all of the things they can use it for.”

Tweetstock is an opportunity for the technologically-savvy, and the not-so-savvy, to learn about how social media can improve their business, connect with people, and expand their network, said Cherewka. After demand for the event left standing room only at Tweetstock 4, held in March in the lobby of the Sanderson Centre, Cherewka is promising “more speakers, more screens, and more chairs” at next month’s gathering. Called Tweetstock V: The Art of Community, the event will feature a host of guest speakers, among them headliner Matt Kuznicki, the social entrepreneur behind ChangeCamp, and Julie Cole, cofounder of Mabel’s Labels, Inc. Mabel’s Labels, a Hamilton based company, was founded eight years ago by Cole and a group of her friends. Social media became the basis for the company’s marketing strategy for its “labels for the stuff kids lose.” Other Tweetstock V speakers are Deb Lowther of Ironkids Nutrition, and David Yoon of Ignite Waterloo. Local speakers include technology sales manager Kevin Magee, Josh Bean of the Brantford Arts Block, Captain Kindness Dave Carroll, and Marc Laferriere, who widely used social media during his campaign in the federal election. Cherewka said it’s important to hold Tweetstock events frequently because social media is constantly changing. “It’s such a great learning curve. If we only held events once a year, what we talked about this year would be obsolete the next. “It’s clear that social media is not going away.”

Tickets for Tweetstock V are available at www.tweetstock.ca.They are $20. For $30, participants can also get either a new book called Tweetstock’s Guide to Tweeting, or a Tweetstock T-shirt.

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Tweetstock IV

Our fourth and largest Tweetstock is only a few weeks away. Scott Stratten from Unmarketing and Kathy Buckworth are two of the featured speakers. Scott is currently on a nation-wide book tour promoting his New York Times Bestseller “Unmarketing”. We’re really excited to be holding this event in the lobby of the Sanderson Centre right here in the heart of downtown Brantford.

We got a great push from Sean Allen of the Brant News and Talk Local (Rogers Cable) and we’ve enjoyed the support of like minded colleagues in the community… Marc Laferriere, Dave Carrol, Syd Bolton, Jamie Stephens, Andrew Macklin, Trevor Cherewka, Josef Stevens, Adam Hislop, Roger Duck, James Harris, Terri Banin, Stacy Cox Farrant, Steve Dostal, Adam King, Matt Larocque, Kevin Magee just to name a few.

We have a few tickets left to what is shaping up to be a sold-out event. Thursday March 3rd, 5-8pm, Sanderson Centre for Tweetstock 4!

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From Marc Laferriere…

kind words from Federal NDP Candidate Marc Laferriere regarding a website design we did for him…

– Web Designer Lucas Duguid of Octopus Red!  Great work and so easy to work with too.  The quality of the site speaks for itself.   Finding a designer who cares so much about the look and feel of your site and wants to get to know you because it helps him in that work is a rare and wonderful thing.  He also did the design work for our twitter site.

http://www.brantmarc.ca/

http://twitter.com/MarcLaferriere

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federal ndp candidate marc laferriere…

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Marc Laferriere and his team on rebuilding his website and his twitter background. We have a printed piece on the horizon and can’t wait to get rolling. On a side note Marc Laferriere is one of the strongest Facebook users I’ve ever met. If anyone is looking for a serious real-world example of how to make 2.0 work for them Marc Laferriere is the one to watch.

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