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Jeff Perera

Inspiring Healthy Models of Manhood & Masculinity

Headlines are full of stories about sexual assault, violence against women and gender inequality in workplaces and learning spaces. Jeff Perera realizes that, with generations of men raised without ‘Maps to Manhood’, we need an inspiring, accessible and positive approach to engage men and boys in embracing their full potential and become a part of change where they work, live and study.

Toronto, Ontario, Canada


The Ladder of Manhood
An interactive talk where Jeff explores how created ideas of gender use the harmful formula of “Manhood = Prove you are not a Woman” Together we look at how men and young men can become part of a change where we work, live and study.

The Gender of Success and Failure
We have assigned a gender to the concepts of success and failure: defining so-called masculine traits as those of success and have feminized ideas of failure, Bring Jeff to talk on how these concepts, the valuing of domination and devaluing of connection, impact us from the boardroom to the dating scene.

How Homophobia impacts Heterosexual Dudes Too
Let’s explore how Homophobia plays a role in the lives of Heterosexual Dudes/Male Athletes as well! We will identify the connection between homophobia, toxic-masculinity and sexism, and how together we can make inclusive spaces where everyone, regardless of gender or sexual identity, can reach their full potential!

Blueprints for Change: Healthy Models of Manhood
In this presentation, Jeff challenges us to rethink manhood. He asks: what are the traditions handed down here? What do you want them to be? Jeff explores the power structures in society and how this reinforces a certain definition of manhood. He encourages men to take this conversation back into everyday ‘male spaces’


Ryerson School of Social Work Award
Ryerson School of Social Work Community Award

Marion Creery Student Leadership Award
Buddhist Tzu-Chi Compassion Award recipient for Community Service

  • What I learned from Jeff Perera tonight is that we're all human. We're all trying to break through the fear and just be our authentic self. I guess I never really thought about it from the male perspective. We're all aware of the struggles women face in the media and in society etc but we don't we take the same amount of time to understand the affects on boys and men. And when you DO take the time you realize it's huge. The messages are EVERYWHERE telling boys & men to hide their vulnerability & PROVE their "masculinity". I'm honestly pretty humbled and enlightened.

    - Stephanie Mulhall, Kindness Changes Everything

Summary Profile

Jeff Perera has been speaking on healthy versus toxic masculinity, and men helping end gender-based violence for over six years to tens of thousands of people across Canada. Jeff has delivered engaging and interactive multimedia talks with elementary, high school, and post-secondary students as well as people in various organizations and spaces about what it means to be a man today.

He has delivered two TEDx talks: ‘Words Speak Louder Than Actions’  which looks at the power of our words, and ‘The Ladder of Manhood’ which explore’ male pursuit of identity and how too many men are fluent in a language of violence. Jeff created ‘Higher Unlearning’ as an online space to explore how narrow ideas of gender effect men and boys, and impact women and girls in everyday life. Jeff founded the annual ‘What Makes A Man’ Conference and was event director for the first TEDx Women event in Toronto.

He was named to Racism Free Ontario’s Top 100 Person of Colour list spotlighting anti-racism activists. Jeff’s awareness-raising initiatives to create inclusive spaces for people of all walks of life have earned him numerous human rights & equity awards.