Riding on Hope: Spring Opportunities!

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May, 2013

The Otesha Project

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Spring is Here and Opportunities Abound!
Cliff Pilkey Changemaker Bursary
May 2013 is a very special month because it marks the very first year for our
Cliff Pilkey Changemaker Bursary

Established with the fine folks at the Canadian Auto Works Union, this bursary gives aspiring changemakers the opportunity to participate
in an Otesha Tour by reducing financial barriers by 80%. That means your total tour cost could be reduced to just $470 for two month tours or $195 for the shortest tour!

What every Otesha bike tour member has in common is a passion for making the world a better place to live. If you (or someone you know!) are committed to being a community changemaker, demonstrate involvement or curiosity in meaningful social justice work, but have barriers from being able to reach the full fundraising goal, we encourage you to apply to this bursary by Friday, May 24th.

Earth Month in the MediaEarth Day on CTV
Resident media stars Kira and Kayla were featured on
CTV Ottawa Morning twice in April, sharing tips and tricks for greening up your life, Otesha style! If you missed the live action, don’t worry – you can find us on youtube here and here.

In honour of Earth Day,
we were also featured on
CHUO and Rogers Cable.

News from Otesha HQ
So long, farewell…Bye bye, Kira!
It is with heavy hearts that we say goodbye to Kira, our Communications Coordinator, who is off to pursue grand adventures working on sustainable food production, natural building and community development projects in New Brunswick and Pinar del Rio, Cuba.

Kira has truly been the Otesha bike grease that keeps everything running smoothly. We will miss her tireless work ethic, sarcastic wit, and wonderful dancing skills, but we hope to see her back around Otesha HQ after her placements are completed.

For future inquiries about outreach opportunities, presentations, workshops & keynotes, media, and website feedback, you can get in touch with Laurel Schut (
info@otesha.ca). If you’d like to keep in touch with Kira personally, you can drop her a note at kiraburger@hotmail.com. She’d love to hear from you!

Upcoming Events
Jane’s ‘Bike’: Cycling Through Change, May 5
Jane's Walk
Join us on May 5th for a 1.5 hour, 5 kilometre bike tour through some of Ottawa’s best cycling paths. Along the way, we’ll pause to watch brief skits and discuss the ways we are connected to our water, transportation, and food.
To learn more and check out our route, click
Capital Vélo Fest
Capital Vélo Fest, June 1-2
The Otesha Project is an official partner of Capital Vélo Fest, Ottawa’s annual bike festival, happening on June 1 and 2. Come visit our tent at the City Hall Bike Rodeo, take part in the Tour La Nuit, and check out Community Spokes for some family-friendly fun throughout various Ottawa neighbourhoods, including bike decorating, cycling games, community rides, and BBQ picnics!

International Children’s Festival, June 1-2
Ottawa International Children's Festival international de la jeunesse d'Ottawa
We’re busy bees here at Otesha – we’ll also be at the Ottawa International Children’s Festival on June 1 and 2 at Lebreton Flats Park facilitating our Banana Workshop on both Saturday and Sunday from 2:15-3pm. Ideal for ages 10+, this workshop is an active exploration of how we
can ALL make a big difference – for people and the planet!
Bonus: entrance to the event is free!

Opportunity Knocks
Parkbus Ambassadors

Parkbus is a non-profit initiative providing express bus service to Ontario Parks. Parkbus is currently looking for energetic, outdoor-oriented volunteers for their Parkbus Ambassador program. As a Parkbus Ambassador, you’ll have the opportunity to both visit the parks they go to,
and help Parkbus coordinate this new and exciting service.

Community Initiatives

The Bicycle Opera brings Canadian contemporary opera to communities across Ontario by bicycle! In July 2013, they will be cycling west of Toronto to Hamilton, Guelph, Kitchener, Stratford, Bayfield, London, and more! You can buy tickets online today!

Sharing Stories of Calgary is a project to create a sense of community around the idea of story telling – each month has a different theme with different speakers who create dialogue for all those who attend. May will look at sharing stories of local organizing; if you're in the Calgary area, check it out on May 17th from 6-9pm at the CommunityWise Resource Centre.

Olumni Spotlight
Alumni of Otesha’s Programs, affectionately known as “O”lumni, are continually inspiring us with what they are up to in the world. See for yourself...

Olumna Victoria Cowan (Rising Tide Tour 2012) has recently been named a National Educational Leadership Fellow from 3M and the Society for Teaching a
Olumna Victoria Cowannd Learning in Higher
Education (STLHE).

“The Otesha Project has shaped my attitude toward teaching and learning. I realized that higher learning…can come from the ground up and from one’s peers. I also learned that the ability to teach hinges upon one’s ability to learn. Thank you, thank you, thank you for enabling and empowering me to create change in this world.”

To read more about Victoria's amazing accomplishments - and see more inspiring Olumni at the same time! - check out her profile as part of our new Olumni profile section!
Olumni Profiles button
We want to extend a BIG congratulations to Victoria on all of her achievements – our Olumni never cease to amaze us!

Walking the Talklogo

Here at Otesha HQ, we strive to walk the talk, which is reflected in our collective daily choices. This month, Otesha Friendleagues have committed to track and log their cycling commutes as part of the City of Ottawa and EnviroCentre's Bike to Work Ottawa campaign.

We encourage you to take the pledge with us - whether you're a seasoned cyclist, or getting back on your bike for the first time in years, Bike to Work Month is the perfect opportunity to show your support for cycling, minimize your environmental impact, and share your passion for cycling with co-workers!

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Peace and Bike Grease,
Kayla, Matt, Laurel, Elly and Austin

www.otesha.ca | The Otesha Project | 153 Chapel Street | Ottawa | Ontario | K1N 1H5 | Canada