Starting in Corner Brook, Newfoundland, and touring to Vancouver, British Columbia, youth leaders and sustainability veterans will bring communities together to discuss the role of Canadians at the Earth Summit 2012 (United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio+20).
In each city, interactive lectures will be held in universities, elementary schools, middle schools and high schools. This a unique opportunity to learn about the Earth Summit 2012, Canadian participation in and contributions to the global initiatives, and Canadian civil society's submission to the official United Nations' Zero Draft for the conference. The participants will have an opportunity to participate in dialogues, and take action to ensure proper representation of Canadians at the global stage.
The goal of the tour is to empower civil society by offering an analysis of current trends in sustainable development and to hold the microphone to Canadian voices as the world accelerates to the Earth Summit 2012.
University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon
March 12th 2012 | 4:00pm - 7:00pm | Room: Arts 241, Neatby-Timlin Theatre - Arts & Science Building
Victoria Wee is the Youth Engagement Director of We Canada and the lead organizer of We Canada’s cross-country tour. She is a member of the Jane Goodall Institute's Youth Leadership Council and the Canadian Environmental Network’s Youth Advisory Board. An Arctic sustainability advocate, Victoria coordinated an international youth declaration to the Arctic Council in 2011, and currently chairs the Students on Ice Arctic Youth Working Group working to widen youth engagement opportunities in the Arctic Council. Victoria was a facilitator at the United Nations Tunza Children and Youth Conference in Bandung, Indonesia and is the initiative’s focal point to the Road to Rio+20 Coalition.“We don’t have to choose between economic prosperity and environmental health. We can do both. Canada was once a leader on the international stage, but in recent years has forgotten its role as steward of a balanced world. Let’s bring Canada back.”
WHY CANADIAN LEADERSHIP? WHY NOW?
In difficult economic times, our collective attention has seemingly shifted away from environmental and social concerns. The government of Canada has seized this opportunity to firmly place environment, climate, and sustainability concerns on a back-burner, despite the continued demonstration by many Canadians that we do care about these issues. Sustainable development is about more than just environmental protection; it is also about creating meaningful and equitable lifestyles for everyone.
In comparison with past Earth Summits, our government has not held consultations with Canadians to provide input on what our country’s position at Earth Summit 2012 should be, a step away from the consistent praise that Canada has received as a world leader in democracy. Canadian voices need to be brought back into focus. What do we want our future to be?
WHAT IS WE CANADA?
We Canada is a nation-wide civil society movement for Canadian leadership for sustainable development at the Earth Summit 2012. Founded and run by more than fifty young adult and veteran sustainability advocates from across the country, who are volunteering their time, We Canada creates an enabling platform for civil society participation in the Earth Summit 2012’s processes.
We are about spreading knowledge and empowering people to make the change in their own lives and participate in systemic change. We foster dialogue and consultation among the public, responsible business networks and NGOs. We have forged a nation-wide civil society coalition and are developing relationships with similar initiatives in other countries. We are working to make the upcoming Earth Summit 2012 the tipping point for the sustainability movement.
THE UNITED NATIONS CONFERENCE ON SUSTAINABLE (UNCSD)
The United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development will be held in June of 2012 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. The Conference is milestone commemoration of the 20th anniversary of the 1992 United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, also known as the Rio Earth Summit.
The Rio Earth Summit was one of the largest gatherings of heads of state, civil society leaders, individuals and organisations in human history. These stakeholders met with the purpose of charting a course for a more sustainable future. From the Summit emerged agreements, most notably Agenda 21, which began the creation of a framework for developing global, national, and regional plans for sustainability. The Rio Earth Summit has since stood as an example of what is possible when governments and civil society work together.