Our Word is Our Weapon sits down to discuss some of the projects going on in St. Catharines
Grassroots and student run organization, D.I.G [Develop Integrate Grow] discusses some of the important contributions they have been working on and continue to work on.
D.I.G operates with a low-budget to sustain 2 plots of land. As of now, those projects have been very successful, increasing awareness by teaching volunteers, outreaching to community groups (Food Not Bombs), and being present at the Brock University Famers Market.
D.I.G recognizes that there are many opprotunities to expand these projects which aren’t limited to growing partnerships between Climate Action Niagara, OPIRG, and BUSU.
Current initiatives are to increase volunteer networks, build the already approved Brock community garden, run workshops throughout the winter, and volunteer dinners.
St. Catharines is a growing urban landscape and D.I.G recognizes that they can benefit from local farmers’ knowledge of the land. By seeking sustainable solutions to food sustainability, climate change and education, D.I.G can inspire others to get involved with the community and bring these issues into political policy making and our consciousness.
Omar Mosquera co-founder of the group and has a natural ability to teach others whether it is through art or sustainable gardening, or his silly humor. His knowledge and passion stems from memories in Columbia where farming is valued in the highest regard. His art is a heartfelt representation of the life he leads and seeks to illustrate a warped reality we live in. Through photography, prints, mixed media, visual shorts and incredible instalations, Omar constantly ties in themes of what it means to be human (at least that is my interpretation of it). He is constantly creating and questioning his role in our community and continues to inspire others.
Melissa Hellwig also speaks about her work as an environmental educator and consultant in Niagara. She works with the city of St. Catharines corporate planning department to implement the integrated community sustainability plan.
By supporting non-profit groups and Niagara’s “green economy, municipal energy management policy and regional climate change strategy, Melissa is breaking down the barriers that these institutions and structures have in place. She is an advocate for community programming and outreach, and encourages others to voice their opinions.
The integrated community sustainability plan is an ongoing project, fighting to be more than just a book on the shelf of a city counsel member. It is meant to be an accessible idea generator and reference guide to make our community a better place. The plan prioritizes interrelated concerns St. Catharines has such as food sustainability, climate change, transportation, etc.”
“In order to channel these and other ideas into a strategy for long-term community
sustainability, the City is proposing four themes:”
1. Living within our means
2. Building resilience
3. Strengthening community identity
4. Integrated decision making
“Municipal governments in Canada and throughout the world are recognizing that their activities can contribute to the future sustainability of their communities even though there are jurisdictional and fiscal limits to their involvement,” from the Sustainability Strategy.
The community needs people like YOU to get creative and use the resources that we are so lucky to have…Like D.I.G, OPIRG, CFBU Radio, Food Not Bombs, the Raft, and people like Melissa and Omar, and the million other groups not mentioned.
For more information about D.I.G check out their super cool blog: http://digitatbrock.wordpress.com/ or on Facebook
or email Melissa at firstname.lastname@example.org