I joined For Our Kids Montreal last year because I was looking for a local community to join that shared my values of social and environmental justice, and a platform for turning my climate worries into meaningful action.
Soon after joining I was invited to join the then called ‘social justice committee’ for the national network. The committee is comprised of volunteers and representatives from different teams in the network, set up to accelerate bringing social justice more concretely into the heart of what we do.
Since then we’ve met regularly to define our mandate, our goals and the actions we’ll take over the next 12 months and beyond. Over the course of our discussions we came to understand the breadth of the challenge of fighting for climate justice in our actions and what it would mean to really put it front and center. We developed a work plan that we’re proud to share. Today, we’re called the JEDI Accelerator Committee (JEDI stands for Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion) and this is what we’ll be working on in the coming 12 months:
1. Raising awareness amongst network supporters and members of our position on climate justice and anti-racist work.
Through changes in the national network's internal and external communications materials, including social media activities, we will make sure that the For Our Kid’s commitment to anti-racism and climate justice is immediately clear.
2. Making sure that our members feel confident talking about climate justice and anti-racism via formal and informal training sessions and discussion groups.
For example hosting our first ever For Our Kids Virtual Book Club this May. The Book Club's book selections aim to bring justice, equity, diversity and inclusion issues related to climate change to the fore. Our first selection is Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer and you're encouraged to join us: find more details and RSVP here.
We also plan on hosting a reading of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s Calls to Action later in the year. This activity aims to familiarize each of us with the actions but also serve as a springboard for discussion on how we can better integrate these actions in our own lives and work. We're also planning to partner again with Moms Against Racism to co-host the workshop "How to raise an anti-racist child" in September.
3. Directly supporting the work of marginalized communities on Turtle Island by supporting specific campaigns.
For example, supporting Wet'su'weten Land Defenders or helping bring a new Environmental Racism Bill into law. But also by generating our own long-term actions nationally and locally.
4. Ensuring social justice principles are enacted and carried forward over long-term.
We want to make sure that this work becomes embedded in the DNA of For Our Kids. To that end, we’ll be developing a governance framework to carry over into 2023 and beyond.
If you’re keen to hear more or get involved in the work of the JEDI committee please feel free to reach out to us at: [email protected]. Or join a For Our Kids team near you and help these principles take hold in your community.
Sarah is a mother to two young kiddos and a researcher based in Tiotia:ke, the island known as Montreal.