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UpTheMountainAndDownAgain

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Transition NDG Launches New Pop-Up Cafe

By Hélène Montpetit

Every Monday from January 23rd to March 13th, NDG residents can warm up, cheer up and pick up new skills by popping into Coopérative de solidarité Transition NDG’s (“TNDG”) new Pop-Up Coop. The transitory café will be held at Café Zephyr, 5791 Sherbrooke West, owned and operated by NDG residents. The venue serves mostly organic, local food and although Chef Anne is off on Mondays, she has agreed to make her hearty soup available to patrons.

Building Community and Resilience

Active in the neighbourhood since 2012, TNDG is well-known for growing free food through its Incredible Edibles initiative that builds and maintains raised-bed gardens on a few of the area’s main thoroughfares during Montreal’s growing season. Also popular are the group’s film and discussion evenings, held once a month from October through June at Coop la maison verte. Continue reading “Transition NDG Launches New Pop-Up Cafe”

New Conference and Nature Walk Series Focuses On Montreal Flora & Fauna

By Hélène Montpetit

From the strip of walking trails and cycling paths on the shores of the Saint Lawrence River to the well-travelled escarpments of Mount Royal, Montreal is home to several species of birds, animals and plants.

Landmarks such as Mount Royal Park and Bois-de-Liesse are well protected, but infrastructure construction and pushes for new housing developments currently threaten some of the lesser-known areas on the Island.

To keep Montrealers informed about the endangered bounty at their doorstep, Transition NDG has teamed up with several local environmental organizations. Together, they will host a series of conferences throughout February and March on the premises of Coopérative La Maison Verte. Each of the talks will be followed by a nature walk in the featured area.

For more information, see the graphic below. You can also stay informed through Transition NDG’s Facebook page.

To find out more about the areas that will be featured, visit the Amis du Technoparc Facebook page here, the Les Amis du Parc Meadowbrook website, the Sauvons La Falaise website and the Sauvons l’Anse-à-l’Orme Facebook page.

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Sweet Songs Collection no. 26 : The UNHCR

houx-de-noel-1The holiday season is upon us and those of us lucky enough to live in safe, stable countries look forward to celebrating with friends and loved ones. For the person on your list who has everything, why not consider the Give a Gift, Save a Life program developed by the UNHCR? You can find out more about by clicking here.

The UNHCR is the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, aka the UN Refugee Agency. It is the world’s leading organization aiding and protecting people forced to flee their homes due to violence, conflict and persecution. It provides shelter, food, water, medical care and other life-saving assistance to refugees around the world.

In Canada, volunteers continue to show an outpouring of support for Syrian refugees by housing them and including them as members of the community. Continue reading “Sweet Songs Collection no. 26 : The UNHCR”

Choice and Change: How to deal with bullying in an open and positive way

by Hélène Montpetit

Ormstown Elementary School has taken singer-songwriter-guitarist David Whyte‘s song The Way I Like To Be Treated and made it into an inspiring anti-bullying video.

Whyte’s approach eschews dark representations, preferring to address the issues from a childlike perspective. Set to a simple melody with interesting phrasing, the song’s lyrics are in the plain language one is most likely to hear on the playground: “I don’t like to be called names, I’m not gonna call anybody names.” The children on the video are shown playing in the schoolyard and modeling inclusive behaviour. They sing earnestly, with humour and purpose.

What a fresh way to broach this topic and to teach children better ways of behaving!

Kudos to Whyte for setting this lesson to music kids can enjoy and to the Ormstown Elementary School staff who directed and filmed the children and who produced this wonderfully positive clip.

 

 

Whyte, who also teaches guitar at Sullivan & Whyte Music School and tours with the Durham County Poets, has arranged to donate revenues from his music to Bullying Canada Inc.  For more information, click here.

 

Transition NDG’s Incredible Edibles, Growing Free Food In The Urban Jungle

A while ago I had the pleasure of attending Transition NDG’s Incredible Edibles picnic where I took a few minutes to speak to some of the members of the team.

In addition to growing free food right on the sidewalks of their burrough, this dynamic group is creating a buzz around urban agriculture, getting local media coverage from CBC Montreal and the Montreal Gazette. Here is what they had to say on that beautiful July evening as we broke bread in an NDG park.

 

To find out more about Transition NDG and their various activities, click here.

Curvy Sketches: Stretching Fashion Norms To Include More

by Hélène Montpetit

September 1, 2016 – Body image is not something that has so far been addressed on UpTheMountainAndDownAgain, where topics usually run to nuclear disarmament, climate change, food security and similar “weighty” issues (pardon the pun). However, as I chatted with different artists at the NDG Art Walk in Notre-Dame-de-Grâce last weekend, I was drawn to Kathleen Doyle’s table and inspired to interview her. Continue reading “Curvy Sketches: Stretching Fashion Norms To Include More”

Transition at the Montreal World Social Forum

by Joey El-Khoury, PhD Candidate, Université de Montréal; Lecturer, HEC Montréal/McGill University; Cofounder, Jardins sans frontières and Member of the coordinating committee, Coalition Climat Montréal

As a Montrealer involved in local transition initiatives, the World Social Forum that recently took place in our city was the ideal platform to talk about transition culture with other practitioners, researchers and enthusiasts from across Quebec, Canada and the world; and this without having to travel for it! Continue reading “Transition at the Montreal World Social Forum”

Sweet Songs Collection no. 25 : The Rules

The Rules is a worldwide network of people dedicated to changing the rules that create inequality and poverty.

Activists, artists, writers, researchers, farmers, peasants, students, workers, designers, hackers, spiritualists and dreamers, they work with social movements, community leaders, cultural players, and everyday people.


Continue reading “Sweet Songs Collection no. 25 : The Rules”

Positive change for Artists & Musicians

July 14, 2016

Art And The Planet
If you are an artist interested in promoting social change, check out Artivists.net, an online platform created to facilitate horizontal communication, coordination and cross-pollination between creative activists working to build a more just and resilient planet. Meet the storytellers, dancers, painters, weavers engaged in imagining, articulating and crafting a new and better world.

Inspiration, companionship and the potential for collaborative projects await!

Social change and Art

 

On The Music Front
Earlier this week, Paul Stacey of Creative Commons published a very interesting article on what a commons based music industry might look like. Inspired by the petition signed by 160 American artists and record labels in support of reform of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), Stacey looks into platforms such as SoundCloud, Spotify, Apple, Google, Tidal and other music services, including Imogen Heap’s Mycelia, a platform dedicated to creating a fair trade music industry. (Access Mycelia here.) Stacey also shares his thoughts on how commons-based thinking might change things.

A must read for professional music makers interested in positive solutions to this common and endemic problem.

 

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August 3rd happening for peace
Music and social change are on the menu on August 3rd at 7:30pm at Cecil Sharp House, London for the event A Change is Gonna Come as Heartbeat performs to spread the message of peace.

Heartbeat harnesses the transformative power of music, uniting young Israeli and Palestinian musicians and promoting critical awareness to help them become leading voices for change. Through music, young people learn to work together to build trust, understanding and to promote peaceful social change against a deeply divided background.

All the money raised at this event goes to Heartbeat and Peace Direct, to support local people who endlessly and courageously work to end wars, build peace and be the change they want to see. For more information, click here.

Thank you for reading. Please feel free to share your comments in the space below.

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