Hello everyone,

My name is Brittany and today I am writing to you as a member of Compass, as a Compass teen to ask for your help. I was fourteen when I left school for good in 2014.  I had little to no self-esteem, I was overwhelmed by homework, and I was afraid of raising my hand to speak in front of the class. I was tired of trying to make it work; I had exhausted all the possible accommodations at public school for my mental illness and learning style. I had tried switching public schools, attending part-time, and even doing online courses. I soon started to realize that there was no way school and I could work together. I felt isolated and lost. My family and I were in a scary place, we didn’t know what to do next, and everyone was worried. My parents had neither the time nor the expertise to teach me, an intelligent teenager, about all the things that growing brains are curious about.

Then I met Abby and Andre, the founders of Compass. I attended a screening that Compass hosted of the documentary Class Dismissed. It resonated with me and I found myself nodding my head in agreement a lot that night. Meeting them gave my family and I hope.

Hope for my future

Now, I am seventeen years old, and Compass is nearing its fifth year anniversary–but I’m worried again. Compass might not have enough funding to stay open for my next semester.

Attendance is greater than it’s ever been. With over 45 Compass families currently enrolled I now realize that I wasn’t alone, that my experience has been shared by many others. Families come to Compass because the school system didn’t work for them, and others come to supplement their home-schooling.

The kids at Compass are all homeschoolers – we don’t attend public or private school. Compass Ottawa is an integral part of our personal and academic growth. Some of us have left the school system because it did not work for us; some of us have, with our families, simply chosen to live and learn without school. Together with Compass’ directors, teachers and volunteers we create a space in which we are all accepted and respected – a space in which we can thrive and strive for the future.

In the days to come I hope to share many other stories like mine. How Compass helps teens. How Compass helps families.

If everyone who received this email was able to help contribute just $50 we’d be half-way towards our goal. I know it’s a lot, and you don’t have to do it alone. We’re asking you to share our stories with your friends and family. On facebook, by email, and even in person. Let the community know that there are choices for their children’s future, and I want one of those choices to be Compass.


Please donate today.

Compass needs your help.  Compass is a lifeline for people like me and families like mine. If Compass had to close, kids and teens would be left without options for continuing their education. There is no other place like Compass. As an eligible charity donations over $20 will receive a tax receipt.