MONTREAL, Sept. 1, 2011 /CNW Telbec/ - This Labour Day Weekend a group
of Jewish young adults will travel six hours north to Wemotaci, Quebec,
to take part in the 15th Annual Wemotaci Pow Wow and begin working hand-in-hand with the
Atikamekw First Nations community on the reforesting process of the
surrounding devastated forest land.
The group of 23 university students and young professionals, under the
banner of Teva Quebec - the Quebec Jewish Coalition for the Environment
and with support from Citizenship and Immigration Canada, will spend
four days planting trees while learning and exchanging environmental,
spiritual and cultural values, including a Pow Wow and a Shabbat dinner
ceremony, with their new First Nations friends.
"Our two communities share a strong respect for nature," said Emily
Litvack, 25, team leader for Teva Quebec's Jewish Eco-Leadership
Training (JELT) replanting initiative. "We want to explore those
commonalities, build a relationship and work together to be part of the
long-term environmental effort."
The Northern Quebec forest fires of May 2010 forced entire First Nations
communities from their homes. Not only do the Atikamekw people depend
on these forests for food and resources, the grounds are also central
element to their spiritual and traditional practices.
JELT was developed to reach multiple goals, including engaging young
adults in environmental issues affecting nearby communities, connecting
with individuals who are impacted by these issues and broadening
environmental perspectives and practices through collaborative ventures
with diverse communities.
"For many of us, this is the first time we're interacting with First
Nations. We hope that the concern for the environment we have in common
will give us a starting point to form meaningful friendships with the
Atikamekw," said Andrew Doyle, 25, a recent graduate of engineering at
McGill University. "This is a unique opportunity for us to learn about
the earth from a community that continues to live in connection with
TEVA Québec is Montreal's grassroots Jewish environmental education and
advocacy group. Its vision is of a Jewish community which plays a
leading role in environmental stewardship and awareness in Quebec
society. Its mission is to promote Jewish environmental education and
action, and to improve the Jewish communities' involvement within the
broader environmental movement.
SOURCE Teva Quebec
For further information:
Rabbi Schachar Orenstein, President and Co-Founder of Teva Quebec
firstname.lastname@example.org or 514-824-5102