Call for Community-Led Jane’s Walks in Toronto: Closes April 27

Attracting thousands from across the Greater Toronto Area each year, the 2023 Jane’s Walk Toronto Festival presents public programming for people to connect and learn about Toronto’s evolution of community development. Inspired by the legacy of acclaimed urban studies theorist, journalist, and activist, Jane Jacobs, the annual festival is 100% made up of volunteer or community-led walking tours. Some of this year’s walks include; Ontario Place West Island, Old Chinatown, High Park, West Scarborough Rail Trail, and Cooksville – with many more being added daily to the festival website.

“Each year, the Jane’s Walk Toronto Festival unites communities and gives space for people to tell meaningful stories of the places we all share. This year’s festival will question the future evolution of our cities’ neighbourhoods while recentering focus on the significant role Toronto’s next generation of youth and our many diverse communities have in shaping it and a more equitable future,” says Wes Reibeling, co-chair of Jane’s Walk.

The open call for community-led walks will be accepted until April 27. In line with Jane Jacobs’s vision, anyone willing to share a story about their community can contribute to the festival and lead a walk. This year, walks have been expanded to include bike rides and a water paddling tour through the Rouge River. The festival programming is intended to be a conversation starter for people to share insights about their environment.

“Hundreds of cities lead Jane’s Walks each year. These walks can help people not only learn about a specific place but also feel more connected to their environment and community. With Toronto being the city where the Jane’s Walk Festival started, I’m excited for the opportunities that this year’s festival will bring for community members of all ages and backgrounds” says Celia Beketa, co-chair of Jane’s Walk.

Beyond guided walks, the Toronto Jane’s Walk Festival will also feature two public panel discussions that focus on youth contributions to city building:

  • Organized in partnership with the Toronto Arts Foundation / Neighbourhood Arts Network, Look Around You: Youth-led Entrepreneurship through the Arts and will launch new ideas for using art in Toronto as a platform for social and economic empowerment for and by youth. The all-female-led discussion will include multi-disciplinary artists and entrepreneurs like Cynthia Roberts-Perez, whose exhibitions have been shared at the Royal Ontario Museum as well as; Jasmine Swimmer – founder of Black Girls NFT; Sariena Luy – founder of the artistic activism group Flaunt it; and Warda Mohamed Youssouf who the founder of the young emerging artist collective House of Arts.
  • The Script: Youth-Led City Building is organized with The Bentway, and spotlights the next generation of civic change-makers. Featuring Raisa Chowdhury of the Youth Empower Youth project in Regent Park, Hafeez Alavi of the Lawrence Prospect; a campaign to make Lawrence Avenue in Wexford, Scarborough safer for all road users, and Ryan Lo, an urban planner, community engagement practitioner, and youth advocate. As Co-Executive Director of Urban Minds.

“It has always been a cornerstone for the Toronto Jane’s Walk Festival to offer free and community-led programming. Each year it’s amazing to see people take pride in their neighbourhoods, no matter their level of expertise, age, or ability,” says Erika Garcia, Jane’s Walk Toronto Festival co-manager.For continually updated listings of this year’s Jane’s Walks or to find out how to lead a walk, visit

About Jane’s Walk
Jane’s Walk is an annual festival of free, community-led walking conversations inspired by Jane Jacobs. The Jane’s Walk festival is volunteer-run and donor-funded, and since the festival’s launch in 2007, Jane’s Walks have been held in nearly 500 cities across 6 continents. Jane’s Walk is made possible with the support of MakeWay.