The Water Issue

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August, 2010


How do you spell "Reason to Dream?" O - T - E - S - H - A

Riding on Hope   
The Otesha Project's Monthly Journal    
This Edition: All About Water   

August 2010

Protect Your Water
Keeping Cool
Tremorless Training Week
Bikes & Plays
Host a table at the Organic Affair
Postcard of the Month
Tuesday Sept 7th
The Highlands and Islands Tour begins! 
Help out at the team's training week in Fredricton: email for more info.

Monday Sept 13th @ 7:30pm
Odell Park Lodge, Fredricton
Watch the Highlands and Islands Tour's kick-off performance. 

Protect your water

A human being needs 2.4 litres of water per day to survive. How much water does the average Canadian use every single day? We've got the answer for you later in this journal. For now, here are the top three ways to protect your river, your lake, your ocean, brought to you by our good friends atOttawa Riverkeeper:

1) Clean Green. Choose non-toxic household, personal care and lawn maintenance products. 
2) Eat Organic. Eat Local. There are farmers making sustainable choices and leading the way in environmental conservation. 
3) Drink Tap Water. It's fun and it's free.

Summertime, and the Living's Easy

Water is precious at this time of year, with thundering 
storms often too few and far FFT growing food on bikebetween to quench the thirst of our gardens. Perhaps you too have adopted a rain barrelsystem, or learned to plant your harvest close together to limit water evaporation from the soil.

One very thirsty garden was this mobile garden created by the Ferocious Farm Tour, pictured to the right. Though the two month tour across Ontario has wrapped up, five tour members continue to spend more quality time on farms through our farm internship program. 

There are a few ways you can keep your cool in a non-air conditioned home or office, and let's just say we're experts in this field. 
>From our home to yours, here are some tips: 

1. Swim in your local watering hole before and after work.

                                                                   2. Minty mist. Get a mist spray bottle. Insert two drops each of  mint 
Otesha Staff with visitor Zahra from Students to End Extreme Poverty
and eucalyptus essential oils, refrigerate for 20 mins, then mist your co-workers or friends when they least expect it. 

3. Paper fan. Make it from scrap paper. Cheap, efficient, and it will bring back fond memories from your childhood.

4. Close your curtains. Prevent the sunlight from getting in & heating up the place. Bonus points: now take that mist bottle and give the curtains a few good sprays. Heat (energy) is absorbed through the evaporation process!

No Tremors or Tear Gas at this Training Week

While staff members bussed out to Vancouver to train the Coast to Capital team the world as they knew it was changing in Ontario.  With the G20 protests having taken place and an unexpected earthquake Jen and Kelly awoke to a new world upon their return to Ontario. Like most training weeks, the team barely noticed - they were so focused, so excited and so engaged with play-learning, sustainability mandate-making and thank you card-creating. 

C2C 2010 flex their muscles
Wearing their team's newly adopted uniform of neck ties, the Coast to Capital Team road off into the sunshine at the end of the week.

Many thanks to all the alumni who came out to help - for their creative cooking, tent snuggling, session level 3-ing and general positive presence. We love you! We also love UBC Farm: a creative and courageous project that continues to flourish despite the challenges they face- check them out here.

Fredericton Friend Search 2010
If you've got hands willing to cook, the desire to support an optimistic team of cyclists, or you are prone to bursting into song and dance, we want to see you in Fredricton! From September 7 to 13 we'll be training the last cycling tour of the 2010: Highlands and Islands.

As we've never held a training week in Fredricton before, we'd love your help in passing on this message to anyone out east who can get the word out to potential volunteers. 
Please contact for more details and to RSVP.
Bike Upgrades and First-Time Plays

Bike Repair Workshop Tyler Walker
On Wednesday, July 21st, 10 people gathered in the backyard of the Otesha House. Their mission: to learn as much as possible about their bikes. 

Tyler, an alumnus of two Otesha tours shared his wealth of knowledge on bicycle maintenance. The evening started off with a hands-on game of how a bicycle shifts gears, and it didn't take long for participants to begin benefiting from their new bike-savvy knowledge. Eventually the entire backyard was filled with upside-down bikes...Now that's what we like to see!

Shad Valley group high-five

The evening didn't stop there, though. Shad Valley's Performing Team was putting on their first showing of the Reason to Dream play at CarletonUniversity. The team did a terrific job at engaging the audience, and getting their message across - they even sported a beautiful set of newly home-made Otesha shirts. Their performance was witnessed by the team's student peers and a crew of Otesha folks en route from the bicycle workshop. Way to go Shad Valley!

Need? ...Or is it want?

Here's your answer to our triva question above:
How much water does the average Canadian use every single day, considering we need 2.4L / day to survive?
The average Canadian uses 343 litres of water every day. 
The average in Sweden: 200 litres,  France: 150 litres
Host a table at our 4th Annual Organic Affair

Last year we brought together 400 people in the Ottawa area to celebrate at Otesha's Organic Affair, and we've already started planning for this year's event (well, the desserts anyways). 

Organic Affair attendeesIf you've never been before, the Organic Affair is part celebration, part fundraiser all wrapped into a free afternoon tea on Sunday November 21st. 

Want to be a part of pulling this event together? Right now we are on the hunt for folks in the Ottawa area who are interested in bringing their friends & family to the event by volunteering to be Table Hosts. If you're interested in knowing more, please
Postcard of the month

After every Otesha presentation, we invite our audience members to change the world by committing to one new hopeful action. Each individual receives a postcard, writes the action on the back, and if they complete the action, they mail it in to our office. We now have thousands of postcards from across Canada, and they are our proof that we are building a movement. Here's one of our favourites from this month:

"I will avoid styrofoam like the plague...if it comes in styrofoam, I won't get it."

Genevieve, age 27, Vancouver

Wish list
We like re-using...and taking other peoples' trash! Here's what we are in need of right now:

  • One-sided paper, 8.5 x 11
  • Your less-than-perfect digital camera

Drop offs are welcome between 9am and 5pm 
from Monday to Thursday at The Otesha House (72 Riverdale Ave.)