Saskatoon – The Council of Canadians supports “System Change, Not Climate Change” and community initiatives that demonstrate real alternatives to the fossil fuel economy. Combined with fundamental policy shifts at the regional, national and global levels, these local community initiatives are the real solutions to the climate crisis our planet faces.
In contrast to carbon offset and trading schemes that commodify the environment, our goal is to recognize and support real change in the way we live and work. The unregulated free market has led to the dangerous tipping point we face – market mechanisms will not resolve the climate crisis.
In order to highlight the Council’s commitment to “System Change, Not Climate Change” we launched a program in 2012 to support local initiatives in host communities that demonstrate in practice what a better world will look like.
Today, the Council of Canadians proudly presented this annual legacy award to The Core Neighbourhood Youth Co-op (CNYC), a non-profit community service cooperative. A hi resolution of the award being presented is available for download here. (Photo cutline: (left to right) Jami Young and Dave Shanks of The Core Neighbourhood Youth Co-op accept the "System Change, Not Climate Change" award from Council of Canadians Board member Rick Sawa and Saskatoon Chapter member Karen Rooney.)
The CNYC creates educational and sustainable economic opportunities for youth in Saskatoon’s core communities and promotes the values of cooperation, sustainability, leadership skills, environmental principles and youth initiative in a safe and respectful environment.
The CNYC runs a variety of programs through its 20th Street West location and the Council’s legacy award will go to support two of them: a bike repair coop and the urban gardening project. During the summer months, youth of all ages can come and learn how to use tools to fix their bicycles, or build a bicycle using donated frames and parts. The gardening project includes a site for raised bed gardening and a small greenhouse with an aquaponics system to grow vegetables. Youth involved in the program will teach younger youth how to plant a small garden as well as the importance of local food and caring for the environment.
The Core Neighbourhood Youth Co-op is an example of the exciting community initiatives multiplying across the country and around the world that offer real change and hope for the future.
The award was presented to the CNYC during the Council of Canadians annual conference, Groundswell: Grassroots Power in the Age of Extreme Energy, which is taking place in Saskatoon this weekend.