Bolton realtor invests in local youth

  • Fotini Walton

Caledon Enterprise
By Matthew Strader

Caledon Realtor Donates to CCS Program

Fotini Walton (left) donated $1,000 to the Life For Youth (LFY) program at Caledon Community Services (CCS). Pictured with Walton are, Melissa Chatzimanolakis, Paul Petrocco and Chris Coulter. Far right is CCS staff member Nicole Dumanski.

Fotini Walton knows where they came from, and where they’re going and she believes her experiences and resources can help guide Bolton youth on the right paths and help them make the right choices.

It is one of the many reasons why the Prudential Real Estate broker was at Chez Thrift on Dec. 13 to donate $1,000 to the Life For Youth program at Caledon Community Services.

She was never a client of Life For Youth herself, but today speaks numerous times a year to local youth taking advantage of the program.

Walton doesn’t have a broken relationship with her family. In fact, they are very close, she said. But circumstances that affected all members of it saw her independent at 15 years old.

“I’ve had to bike to school, and then to work after in order to pay the bills,” she said. “Everyday was a hustle.”

Walton went through 18 different residences and nine high schools during her youth. She worked a myriad of jobs in the hospitality industry to keep her, “feet on the ground and head above water,” she said.

Her life is a story of a self-made woman. Though she had every reason to give up on stability and rebel on life, she didn’t. Instead, she began reading self-help books when she was 14, she said, and through the guiding words and phrases found stability.

“In my opinion success is not about a dollar amount,” Walton said. “It’s about finding balance and inner peace.”

Today, besides using the inspiration of her own experiences and some lessons that she has devised herself while becoming more experienced at speaking with youth, Walton is training as an Equine Experiential coach at the Horse Spirit Connections centre in Tottenham. The Facilitated Equine Experiential Learning program will see her train to use horses as a life coach.

“Horses are a big part of my life now,” said Walton, who owns two at her 10-acre property just northeast of Bolton.”They can teach us so much.”

The realtor explained that the horse to human relationship is one that has been developed over thousands of years and she believes that horses become “mirrors” of their companions. They will feel the anxiety felt by their companion, share their emotions and breathing patterns. So the horse, in essence, can become your guide to producing positive thoughts and habits within yourself.

“The spirit of the horse is one that can be timid and hesitant, but they are very wise and powerful, they reflect the present state of the person they’re interacting with. They (the horse) can become the teacher,” she said.

In her talks with Life For Youth participants, Walton focuses positive thoughts and activities. She buoys her clients by using her own example of perseverance and self-belief.

She hopes her donation is an example for others in the community of where to put their own efforts.

“Youth are the future,” she said. “My hope is that my message, and my story, can just help theirs.”

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