Saturday, September 8, 2007: First Pyramid of Shoes for Handicap International



    MONTREAL, Sept. 8 /CNW Telbec/ - Since 1995, French and European citizens
have united each year in more than 40 cities throughout Europe to throw their
shoes onto a pyramid as a sign of protest against anti-personnel landmines and
cluster bombs. A powerful symbolic gesture of solidarity with the victims of
these weapons, the Pyramid is built in conjunction with a petition signing to
prohibit the use of cluster bombs. On Saturday, September 8 the first Pyramid
of Shoes in Canada organized by Handicap International will take place at the
park Emilie Gamelin in Montreal (Berri Square).
    With Handicap International leading the way, each visitor is invited to
bring pairs of shoes to create the Pyramid of Shoes. In addition to its
activist and Peace rally dimensions, the event will also be a festive and
joyful experience. Engaging speakers and a multitude of performers will take
the stage from 11:00am to 5:00pm and the day will offer a children's area,
African dancers, music shows and landmine clearance demonstrations with
Serge Effantin, Landmine Clearance and Safety Expert. The Psychotropical
Orchestra and the Hyposmics will be headlining the music while several NGOs
(UNICEF, Amnesty International, Médecins du Monde, Mines Action Canada) will
have information booths set up. A press conference will take place at 11:00am
for the opening of the day. Georges Robert, a talented MC, will announce the
day's schedule and guide the crowd through the activities.
    We invite all Montrealers to come and throw their pair of shoes and sign
the petition, their shoes symbolizing the devastation to the limbs and lives
of the thousands of victims of landmines and sub-munitions. The shoe company
Aldo will offer 250 pairs of shoes as a sign of solidarity for our cause. A
partnership was also set up with CERTEX, a non-profit organization located on
the south shore of Montreal, which employs people with disabilities who
recycle clothing and shoes and send them to countries in the Global South.
This organization will be given all the shoes of the Pyramid.
    Handicap International has worked for several years with the
international community in order to obtain the complete prohibition of
anti-personnel landmines and cluster bombs. The Association deploys teams of
experts in order to seek out and neutralize any unexploded remnants of war
which put the life of thousands of civilians in danger throughout the world.
They also provide assistance to victims and carry out preventive actions
against accidents by landmines in civilian areas. Special urns will be placed
in the area to collect the gifts of those Montrealers who wish to help. For
those who cannot attend, they can make a gift via the Web site
(www.handicap-international.ca), call us toll free at 1-877-908-2813, or send
a personal check to the address mentioned above.

    Handicap International is a non-governmental, non-religious and
non-political organization that works with people with disabilities in a
variety of contexts to offer them assistance and support in their efforts to
become self-reliant. Since its creation, this non-profit organization has set
up programs in about 60 countries and has provided aid in many emergency
situations. It has offices in the United States, France, the United Kingdom,
Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg and Canada since 2003. These offices
provide human and financial resources, manage humanitarian projects and raise
awareness about the issue. HI is a co-founder of the Cluster Munitions
Coalition and the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which was awarded
the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize.




For further information:

For further information: Nancy DeGraff, (514) 908-2813 extension 222,
nancy.degraff@handicap-international.ca; Sandrine Guillot, (514) 908-2813
extension 224, sandrine.guillot@handicap-international.ca

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Handicap International

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