Friday, 2 May 2014

Eco Rock Star In The House!

While I have always had crunchy tendencies, it was becoming a parent that pushed me into living a more eco conscious life. But the seeds for my beliefs and actions were sown in my childhood, with a mother who wanted to make healthy meals for us (I had carob chips for a recess "treat" instead of chocolate to cut down on sugar), and a grandmother with an amazing green thumb. Both of these women also instilled in me a hoarder-like need to repurpose everything before "upcycling" was a thing, which is why today I have a closet full of glass milk jugs, toilet paper rolls, egg shells and old sheets.

David Suzuki speaking at the Youth REaDY Summit
I also remember watching a seminal Canadian television show, "The Nature of Things" with David Suzuki growing up. I felt a small personal connection to him because a family friend was one of his graduate students when he was a professor of genetics at the local university. It isn't surprising that my parents' friend went on to be a pioneer of organic farming in Australia. 

Through his tv show, David Suzuki taught us about the wonders of nature, the delicate balance between species, how this impacts the health of the environment, and why we should care. He is an advocate for getting people out into nature to inspire environmentalism. He himself developed his love of nature from spending time with his father fishing and camping around the Vancouver area before they were sent to internment camps during World War Two (one of many black marks in Canadian history).

I have continued to be inspired by David Suzuki throughout my life, and in recent years I have been following his foundation, The David Suzuki Foundation. Through the organization I have found inspiration for living an eco lifestyle, an education guide for connecting students with nature that I have used with my own class, and daily tips that I can use to green my life. 
Musqueam Nation elder
chanting a welcome.

To say I was excited to finally see David Suzuki speak at a public event is a gross understatement! This past weekend I attended the REaDY Summit, a youth led Earth Day event to promote environmental sustainability, and David Suzuki was the keynote speaker (last year his daughter was the keynote). The theme was "We Are the Fraser", referring to the importance of our local river to the health of the region.

After an emotional welcoming ceremony by an elder from the Musqueam First Nation, there was an electric buzz in the air as David Suzuki took to the stage. His talk once again highlighted why he has been an inspiration for generations. 

Some Key Points from David Suzuki's Message:

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