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Going Barefoot II


A One-Day Conference For Communicators From Non-Profit Groups And Religious Organizations

May 15, 2009, 8:30 AM to 4:30PM

Canadian Mennonite University,
500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB



Held in conjunction with the May 14-16 Annual Convention of the Canadian Church Press.

A university journalism professor recently lamented that few of his students read newspapers or news magazines or listen to radio news. What media do most of them access? Facebook, and other social media sites.

If that's the case, how can communicators reach youth today? How do we get their attention? What things interest them? What media channels are they using? These questions and more will be addressed at Going Barefoot II, May 15, 2009 at Canadian Mennonite University (CMU) in Winnipeg.


Mike Tennant, co-creator and co-producer of the popular CBC Radio show The Age of Persuasion, and co-author of a forthcoming book of the same title. More info...

Gayle Goosen, founder and Creative Director at Barefoot Creative, who will share the results of a survey about the media habits of Christian youth (ages 16-22). More info...

Going Barefoot II will also include workshops and a networking lunch. (Check back later for workshop titles and presenters.) Also attending will be members of the Canadian Church Press, which is holding its annual convention in conjunction with Going Barefoot II. (Canadian Church Press members should register via the CCP website.)


  • $84 (includes GST)
  • students: $42 (includes GST)
  • Late registration fee: After April 24 add $10.

Download the printable Registration Form (PDF). Mail it with your payment to MCC Canada, 134 Plaza Dr., Winnipeg, Man. R3T 5K9. Mark your cheque: Going Barefoot. Credit card payment also accepted.


The 2009 conference is sponsored by:

  • Canadian Mennonite University
  • Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Canada
  • Mennonite Church Canada
  • Mennonite Church Manitoba
  • Inter Church Communications
  • Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches.

About the Speakers

Mike Tennant

Mike Tennant is a veteran writer and broadcaster based in Kitchener, Ont. He has a wealth of experience in communication, having been involved in the field since 1977 when he wrote a weekly youth/humour column for Toronto's Sunday Star. In the 1980s he was a copywriter for contemporary and alternative music radio stations in Regina, Calgary and Toronto; since the 1990s he's worked as a freelance ad copywriter, creating radio campaigns for such brands as Pepsi and Toys R Us. His ad work has won Clio Awards and Gold Medals at the New York Advertising Festivals.

In 1995 he became the advertising columnist for CBC Radio's Definitely Not the Opera. In 2005, with colleague Terry O'Reilly, he created, wrote and produced the highly popular 25-part CBC Radio series O'Reilly on Advertising. They followed that with the equally popular series, The Age of Persuasion. Now in its third season, it explores the countless ways advertising and marketing have permeated every aspect of 21st century culture. Their book, The Age of Persuasion, is scheduled for publication by Knopf, Canada in the autumn, 2009.

Mike, his wife Lorrie, and their three teenagers attend Kitchener Mennonite Brethren Church, where he leads Christian education classes on media and current events.

Says Mike: "The Facebook generation is very much like the rich young man who asked Christ what he must do to have eternal life," says Tennant. "When he didn't like what he heard, he 'changed channels' and left."

At the same time, he adds, "the Facebook generation can spot a phoney almost instantly. That's a peril for inauthentic brands, who are exposed, vilified, virtually tarred, virtually feathered, and shown the door. But that also gives Christianity a head-start. After all, what's more authentic than the love of Christ?"

Gayle Goosen

Gayle’s vision for excellence formed the foundations of Barefoot Creative, and her background in creative writing, literature and management fuels much of their portfolio. She is passionate about helping non-profit and for-profit clients build brand identity and consistency, communication and marketing materials, and marketing strategies. She is described as an out-of-the-box thinker, able to lead the strategic thinking process in new directions for effective growth.


  1. Emerging Spirit, three years later. In 2006 the United Church of Canada launched an ambitious web-based marketing campaign to engage Canadians on spiritual issues. Was it a success? What would they do differently? Come hear Lesley Harrison, Coordinator for Welcoming Ministries of the Emerging Spirit program, talk about this unique, and sometimes controversial, outreach effort.
  2. Website marketing. Join Gayle Goosen. founder and Creative Partner at Barefoot Creative as she talks about Search Engine Marketing, Search Engine Optimization and about how to make your website interactive and engaging by employing tools from Facebook, Twitter and other social media.
  3. Navigating Social Media. Everyone knows about Facebook and My Space, but what about Ning, Yammer, Bebo and Orkut? There's a wide world of social media websites out there, and Kevin Glasier of Tactica Interactive Communications will help you navigate the brave new world of social media, and provide some guidelines for using it.


8:30-8:45 AM
Welcome & Opening (Laudamus Auditorium, north side of campus)
Keynote Address: Mike Tennant (Laudamus Auditorium)
Break (Heritage Lounge)
Youth Media Habits Survey Results:Gayle Goosen (Laudamus Auditorium)
Noon-1:30 PM
Lunch (chapel, south side of campus)
Workshops (Founders Hall, north side of campus)
Break (Heritage Lounge)
Keynote Address:Mike Tennant (Laudamus Auditorium)
Closing (Laudamus Auditorium)

About Going Barefoot

Going Barefoot is a biennial conference for church communicators who work for denominations, church-related organizations and other non-profit groups. The 2009 conference is sponsored by Canadian Mennonite University; Mennonite Central Committee (MCC) Canada; Mennonite Church Canada; Mennonite Church Manitoba; and the Canadian Conference of Mennonite Brethren Churches.


Going Barefoot II will be held on the north side of the Canadian Mennonite University Shaftsbury campus at 500 Shaftesbury Blvd. The plenary sessions will be held in the Laudamus Auditorium, with lunch on the south side in the chapel. Map of the CMU Shaftesbury campus, along with a map showing directions to the school.


For more information, contact John Longhurst at

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