Changing the Dream symposium celebrates Earth Day

TRU is hosting a unique opportunity to explore local issues of social justice and environmental sustainability on April 21.

Thompson Rivers University in Williams Lake is hosting a unique opportunity to explore local issues of social justice and environmental sustainability on April 21, the day before Earth Day.

The Awakening the Dreamer; Changing the Dream Symposium is a video symposium developed by the Pachamama Alliance as a tool for helping communities explore environmental sustainability, social justice and spiritual fulfillment in the face of pressing global socio-economic and environmental crises, says Jay Goddard, TRU’s human service programs co-ordinator.

“The symposium confronts the current state of the world, examines how we got here and most importantly looks at possible futures and how we can begin to work to create a sustainable and socially just future,” Goddard says. “To be sure, the film and discussion presents a frank and realistic picture of the current state of the world.”

He says the event began when faculty at TRU, members of the local Conservation Society, the Food Policy Council and concerned local citizens came together to view the film portion of the symposium and felt there was need to catalyze the local community around these important issues. Committee members who have watched it and participated in the symposium have said it is an excellent tool for sharpening awareness and moving people on to action, he says.

Because the ultimate goal of the symposium is to foster greater involvement and engagement with social and environmental issues, this event is paired with an afternoon sustainability forum where local environmental and social organizations and local and regional experts will hold discussions and share information about projects and local issues.

Participants will be invited to learn more about how they can become involved in supporting local initiatives, learn to be green consumers, create greater awareness, influence decision makers and feel empowered to begin to work towards change. One of the invited speakers is Tom Owen, Thompson Rivers University’s director of sustainability, who will speak about ways that people can begin to take steps to influence change at the local and global level.

The day will culminate with an evening of entertainment and a dance featuring a performance by the Drum & Bell Tower.

The public is invited to participate in any or all of the events.

The evening dance and entertainment extravaganza will begin at 6:30 with an admission of $10.

For more information contact Jay Goddard, jgoddard@tru.ca. or Lisa Bland,  lisa@changingthedream.ca. Organizations wishing to set up a display or host a discussion can contact Traci Lisetto at tlisetto@tru.ca.

The event has a website as well: www.changingthedream.ca.