Tackling the Environment Crisis: Together We Can

Tackling The Environmental Crisis: Together We Can. Thank you to everyone who took an interest in the three-part webinar series, presented jointly by CFUW-Nepean /-Kanata /-Ottawa,

As promised, recordings of these webinars are now accessible on YouTube.

Webinar No. 1 with Rebecca Prince-Ruiz — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tqBUyCOKeNM

Webinar No. 2 with Diana Beresford-Kroeger and Bill Steer — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ErPwncR17oI&t=2s

Webinar No. 3 with Seth Klein and Sabah Ibrahim — https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UAdgNwpY2BY

1. Recommendations for reducing plastic waste

See https://www.plasticfreejuly.org/what-others-do/

To learn about Rebecca’s book please visit: http://cup.columbia.edu/book/a/9780231198622

Suggestions for action:

  • Get the conversation going about reducing single-use plastic. Do what you can.
  • Communicate with the grocery store owners to express your concerns about plastic packaging.
  • Refuse any plastic straws, plastic cutlery, plastic bottles or take-out containers made of plastic at hotels, restaurants, fast food outlets, so that business owners will think again. Mention the subject in any reviews you submit online.
  • Encourage local, provincial and federal governments to adopt a “circular economy.”
  • Reduce, reuse, repurpose, repair or recycle items made of plastic, regift toys made of plastic… and generally rethink your use of plastic at home. Avoid acquiring what you do not need.
  • Try meeting the Plastic Free July challenge, living without plastics for a month, or buying as few items as possible that contain plastic or are wrapped in plastic. Find alternatives to cling wrap; research other ways to keep food fresh.
  • Take part in a park or waterfront clean-up, or initiate one yourself.
  • Raise awareness that cigarette butts contain plastic and toxins and do not easily decompose.

2. Recommendations for restoring the global forest

See https://dianaberesford-kroeger.com

Diana’s books include The Sweetness of a Simple Life, The Global Forest, Arboretum Borealis: A Lifeline of the Planet, Arboretum America: A Philosophy of the Forest and A Garden for Life. A feature-documentary about her work, the Canadian Screen Awards-nominated Call of the Forest: The Forgotten Wisdom of Trees, appeared in 2017. Her latest book is To Speak for the Trees: My Life’s Journey From Ancient Celtic Wisdom To a Healing Vision of the Forest. To find out more about these books, please see: https://www.penguinrandomhouse.com/authors/185368/diana-beresford-kroeger

To book a visit to the Canadian Ecology Centre, please go to: www.canadianecology.ca

Suggestions for action:

  • Host a screening of Diana’s film, The Call Of The Forest, in your community.
  • Encourage your friends and neighbours to plant and protect trees. Plant and maintain native trees in your neighbourhood or on your property.
  • Learn about native trees and their advantages, find a sapling or germinate the seed of a tree and plant it appropriately. “Everyone needs to plant one native tree per year for the next six years.”
  • Plant a native tree or grove of trees in honour of someone special to you.
  • Form letter-writing teams to advocate for the conservation of wild, natural areas in your region and protest against any proposed development that threatens native species by writing letters to your representatives at municipal, provincial and federal levels of government.

3. Recommendations for Climate Change mitigation

To learn more about or order Seth’s book, A Good War, please see: https://www.sethklein.

To learn more about the Climate Emergency Unit (CEU), visit: https://www.climateemergencyunit.ca

To sign up for the CEU’s newsletter, so you can stay informed about the CEU’s various campaigns, do so here.

Suggestions for action:

  • To learn about the Ontario Climate Emergency Campaign, and to sign on, please visit https://www.ontarioclimateemergency.caas a result of our project, CFUW National and CFUW Ontario Council are already added to the list of signatories supporting this campaign!
  • Work on a personal plan to reduce your purchase of unnecessary luxuries and to travel less, or to travel in more environmentally-friendly ways.
  • Book an energy audit and consider alternative sources of energy and means of insulation at your home.
  • Walk, cycle or use public transport more.
  • Advocate for rapid installation and deployment of electric vehicle charging stations.
  • Contact your municipality or provincial representatives to demand rapid installation and deployment of electric vehicle charging stations.
  • Advocate for a better intercity rail service instead of more, or wider highways.
  • Advocate for a sustainable, regenerative, zero emissions economy.
  • Form letter-writing teams to urge the government to end fossil fuel subsidies immediately and rapidly wind down the use of fossil fuels.

Amplify the Message!

posted in: Special Event | 0

Calling all members! Your CFUW Advocacy committee has organized a letter writing campaign to show our support for Anti Human Trafficking education and resources that are urgently needed in our local Niagara schools. We need your help to send a clear message that this is important to CFUW members.

On January 3, 2022, a letter from CFUW President Maureen Shantz will be going out to every high school principal in the Niagara Region and to the two Directors of Education – the Public and Catholic School Boards.

To send your own letters of support to the Directors of Education, click the following links, print the letters, sign your name and mail.

District School Board of Niagara letter

Niagara Catholic District School Board letter

Why a letter writing campaign? CFUW wants to send a strong message to educators that action must be taken now on Human Trafficking in our Niagara Schools. Programs and resources need to be created within schools to educate students and staff about Awareness, Prevention and Detection of Human Trafficking, with the goal of providing students with a safe and supportive environment.



June 2021: Ontario Gov’t updated the anti-human trafficking strategy https://www.ontario.ca/page/ontarios-anti-human-trafficking-strategy-2020-2025

June 3, 2021: Bill 251: Combatting Human Trafficking Act from the Ontario Legislative Assembly was given Royal Assent

July 6, 2021: Ministry of Education sent out to schools, Boards of Education: Policy/Program 166, Keeping Students Safe: Policy Framework for School Board Anti-Sex Trafficking Protocol. https://www.ontario.ca/document/education-ontario-policy-and-program-direction/policyprogram
The link below sums up quite nicely the goals of Policy 166.

16 Days of Activism – November 25 to December 10th

posted in: Special Event | 0

Highlights of some Events in Niagara Region:

November 25th, 11 am – Flag Raising at Niagara Region Headquarters on Schmon Parkway  – join President Maureen Shantz at this event. It is open to the public. All are welcome. Show support for the Region’s 16 Days campaign.

November 25th, 5pm – Lighting of the Main St Bridge in Welland – join CFUW Wellend & District on the east side of the bridge as it lights up in orange.

SIGNATURE EVENT – Sunday December 5th at PAC downtown St Catharines Film House at 4 pm. Live screening of movie “Beyond December 6th” followed by a panel discussion. Event is free but you need to “purchase” a ticket – Click Here. All COVID protocols in place. Hope to see you there!


2021 Fundraising Campaign Exceeds Goal

posted in: Special Event | 0

100th Anniversary Campaign raises over $21,100  for young women’s scholarships

 August 3, 2021   –  CFUW St. Catharines ends its 2021 fundraising campaign on a high note, raising $21,100 for young women’s scholarships, and agencies that assist women and children.

Gratitude is expressed by the virtual event organizers and Club members to the host gardeners, presenters, event sponsors, Niagara College, and supporters of the 100th Anniversary Campaign.

The funds raised will ensure that 18 young women receive scholarships, bursaries and awards in 2022. The monies are distributed to students attending Brock University, high schools, the Adult Learning Centres and local agencies that support women and children.

“We raised $21,100  through sponsorships, online donations and the sale of more than 850 tickets, which surpassed our expectations,” said Maureen Shantz, Club president. “We are indebted to Niagara College, which receives two, previously established endowed bursaries, for their technical expertise and video production services in providing quality, high-calibre virtual garden tours for our virtual audience.”

“The community truly supported us. Our virtual audience was very pleased with the calibre of the event and the gardeners whose properties were showcased are delighted with the outcome – it was a win-win-win for everyone,” added Barb Legg, committee Co-Chair.

CFUW St. Catharines is a voluntary, self-funded, non-partisan, non-profit organization, committed to raising funds for young women’s post-secondary education and local agencies. There are approximately 100 clubs across Canada that are members of CFUW National, which also supports international efforts to improve the lives of girls and women world-wide. Locally, monthly meetings are held from September to May, with presentations on community issues and topics of general interest.  Members undertake advocacy work and participate in social activism on initiatives to remove barriers to women’s full participation in society.

Residents interested in learning more about the Club and how to become a member, can visit www.cfuwstcatharines.org for more information.


Maureen Shantz, President, CFUW St. Catharines    905-325-8437

Barb Legg, Co-Chair, Virtual Garden Tour Committee  905-688-4175

Fact Sheet –  Campaign Sponsors

Production Partner and Friend

  • Niagara College

 Platinum Sponsor  

  • Kirkor Architects & Planners

 Silver Sponsor

  • Andrew’s Tree & Shrub Care
  • Cat’s Caboose Dining Coach and Bar Car
  • Lancaster Brooks & Welch LLP
  • Sullivan Mahoney LLP

Bronze Sponsor

  • Patricia Boyko, Donro Financial
  • Skyway Lawn Equipment Limited
  • Nicole Lalonde, Financial Advisor, Edward Jones
  • Patrick Little, Heelis Little Almas & Murray LLP
  • Raw Tibicos, Leslie Payne-Zimmer

 Continued Sponsorships

  • Avondale Food Stores
  • Stark Lumber
  • David Shapiro, Barrister and Solicitor
  • Salon Alessandro
  • Margaret Vail RE/MAX

Scholarships, Awards and Bursaries

 Brock University Awards:

CFUW Eleanor Shaw Award

CFUW Lily Bell Memorial Award for English

CFUW St. Catharines Bursary

CFUW Gail Jenkyns Memorial Bursary

CFUW St. Catharines 100th Anniversary Scholarship

Niagara College Awards:

CFUW Laura Sabia Bursary

CFUW St. Catharines Bursary

Math Awards:

High School Math Awards to each high school in St. Catharines

Adult Education Awards

Scientifically Yours

Niagara Regional Science Fair


Niagara Symphony Music Camp Bursary


Vote for Girls Education

posted in: Special Event | 0
Out of 400+ entries, GWI was selected as a #GGPhotoContest finalist and they need your help to win up to $1,000 in support of Girls Education for Brighter Futures. Be sure to tell your friends and family. You can vote here: https://www.globalgiving.org/poll/vote/?pollOptionId=1604

Vaccination Support Committee

posted in: Special Event | 0

Effective Wednesday April 7th, if you were born in 1961 or earlier, the Provincial online portal & call centre is open for registration for a Covid-19 vaccination appointment.  In addition, many pharmacies and physicians across Niagara also have vaccine doses for customers/patients 55+ and will be calling them to book appointments. For some pharmacies, you can pre-register on their website.

Below are the details on how to register using the Provincial online portal:

      • Click here for the Ontario website
      • Call centre phone # is 1-888-999-6488 open 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. every day
      • You will need information from both the front & back of your green health card, birth date, Postal Code and email address and cell number (with texting capabilities). You may need access to a printer.
      • If you only have a red & white health card, you must phone to book.
      • You can register for any clinic in the region. Click to see list of clinic locations & dates/times they will be open or visit the Niagara Region Public Health website.
      • Niagara residents taking transit for COVID-19 vaccination clinics will be able to travel for free to any Public Health Vaccination Clinic and to pharmacies and doctor’s offices for inoculations as they become available. Accessible shuttles will be available from Brock Transit Hub to the clinic. Riders will need to show proof of their appointment when boarding and proof of vaccination on return trips. Users will also be required to wear a mask on the bus. Information about bus schedules can be found at yourbus.com or by calling 905-687-5555.
      • For your appointment:

      – Wear a mask
      – Bring your Ontario Health Card.
      – Bring your booking confirmation number or QR code from the provincial booking portal, preferably a printed version.
      – Have something to eat to prevent feeling faint while receiving the vaccine.
      – Be sure to wear a comfortable shirt which is loose along the arms (so you can receive a vaccination in the upper arm).
      – Arrive no more than five minutes prior to your appointment time.

      CFUW St Catharines Ad Hoc committee continues to ensure that all our senior members who wish to receive their Covid-19 vaccination do not miss the opportunity. If you were born in 1946 or earlier and think that you may need assistance with any of the following, please send an email to cfuwstcatharines@gmail.com and we will contact you with further details.

      • Assistance with knowing when the vaccine is available to the over 80’s
      • Assistance with registering for the vaccine
      • Assistance with knowing where to go to be given the vaccination
      • Assistance with arranging transportation to/from an appointment for a vaccination

      Depending on the success with our over 80 members, we will consider expanding our mandate to other age groups in the future. Watch for updates on this page.

      CFUW St Catharines Vaccination Support
      Ad Hoc Committee
      Susan Middleton – Chair
      Carol Dueck – member
      Kathy Pagonis – member
      Pat Paulin – member

Creative Writing Contest

posted in: Special Event | 0

The CFUW St. Catharines 100th Anniversary Creative Writing Contest beckons. Let your inventive artistic talent flow from mind to page in no more than 750 words. the only requirement is that your story must begin with “The meaning was clear”.

Confirm your intent to enter by March 5th to Trish Loat, Bettianne Matheson or Caroline Nolan. Submit one copy of your entry by April 30th. Results will be announced in October 2021.

REDress Project – February 8 – 14

posted in: Special Event | 0

Missing and murdered Indigenous women, girls and two-spirit people (MMIWG2S+) will be remembered by the Brock University and Niagara College communities during a weeklong display of red dresses and through several virtual events from Monday, Feb. 8 to Sunday, Feb. 14.

The REDress Project, which involves the hanging of red dresses in public spaces, began as an art installation by Métis artist Jamie Black first displayed at the University of Winnipeg in 2011 and has since been replicated in communities across Canada. The empty red dresses are meant to signify the loss of thousands of Indigenous women, girls and two-spirit, lesbian, gay, trans, bisexual, queer, questioning, intersex and asexual (2SLGTBQQIA) people over the past 40 years to colonial violence.

Since 2019, Brock University has hosted an installation of red dresses around campus and a public event raising awareness about MMIWG2S+ organized around Feb. 14 in solidarity with the annual Women’s Memorial March held in Vancouver since 1991.

Brock’s Acting Vice-Provost, Indigenous Engagement, Robyn Bourgeois said continuing to raise awareness of the longstanding injustices the week discusses was of critical importance.

“Violence against Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGTBQQIA people has always been a part of colonialism in Canada, and it continues to be a part of Canadian society because Canada remains a colonial country,” she said. “While Canada undertook a formal inquiry into this violence, the government has yet to respond to its findings and, more importantly, take action to protect Indigenous women, girls and 2SLGTBQQIA people from violence. This inaction comes with an extraordinary cost for Indigenous Peoples.”

Along with an array of virtual events to further raise awareness, this year will see red dresses hung at Brock University and Niagara College, the latter of which is participating in the initiative for the first time. Dresses will be hung outside at the University’s main campus and the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts, and at Niagara College’s Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake and Welland Campus — each including an attached note with information about the project to help increase awareness. The College community is encouraged to share photos of themselves tying a red ribbon to a tree to honour the MMIWG via social media.

“Being a part of the REDress Project with our partners at Brock University and having the opportunity to display the red dresses on our campuses is very meaningful to the Niagara College community. It will offer a striking visual reminder in the week leading up to Valentine’s Day and Family Day that each and every missing and murdered Indigenous woman and girl was loved,” said Lianne Gagnon, Director, Student Services, Niagara College.

“The important issue of MMIWG is in the hearts and minds for all of us at Indigenous Education, and supporting the LGBTQ2S+ community is a vital component of our core NC values to ensure a safe, diverse and inclusive place for all. We hope that our involvement will further engage our College and the public to learn more.”

Bourgeois said the partnership with Niagara College showed awareness of the issue was growing.

“I’m so excited this year’s REDress event is a collaboration between Niagara College and Brock University,” she said. “Partnership and collaboration are the cornerstones of success, and I’m so pleased we can work together to raises awareness about MMIWG2S+.”

Along with the existing red dress display and participating in the virtual events, community members are also encouraged to hang a red dress where they are (for example, in a window or outside) for the week and to send a photo of the dress to REDressBrock@gmail.com to be part of a virtual display.

By hanging red dresses, participating virtually and taking time to learn about ongoing injustices, Bourgeois said participants can contribute to appropriate remembrance and necessary changes in policy going forward.

“We need events like this because the work isn’t done,” she said. “Not only do we need space to remember MMIWG2S+, we also need to continue to press this issue and demand justice for MMIWG2S+, their families and Indigenous communities generally. We cannot be silent as long as this violence continues.”

The REDress initiative is sponsored and supported by Brock University’s Human Rights and Equity Office, Social Justice Centre, Sexual Violence Prevention Committee, Faculty of Social Sciences Dean’s Discretionary Fund and Office of the Vice-Provost, Indigenous Engagement; and Niagara College’s Facilities Management and Indigenous Education. That support will allow virtual events for REDress 2021 (listed below) to run from Monday, Feb. 8 to Friday, Feb. 12.

Both the Brock and Niagara College communities, as well as the public, are encouraged to attend the virtual events to learn more about the REDress Project, the MMIWG inquiry and the impacts the issue is having in Niagara.

Families of MMIWG
Monday, Feb. 8 from 2 to 4 p.m.
To launch REDress week, we are centring the stories of families of MMIWG. Community member Linda John will share her family’s experiences.
To attend the event, please visit Brock’s REDress website.

Tuesday, Feb. 9 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
This session highlights the experiences of 2SLGTBQQIA and features panelist Nenookaasi Ogichidaa.
To attend the event, please visit Brock’s REDress website.

Brock’s Decolonial Reading Circle hosts Helen Knott
Wednesday, Feb. 10 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Brock’s Decolonial Reading Circle (DRC) will host author Helen Knott to discuss her memoir, In My Own Moccasins: A Memoir of Resilience.
To attend this event, please email Bourgeois at rbourgeois@brocku.cato be added to the DRC email list and receive link information.

Men, Masculinity and MMIWG
Thursday, Feb. 11 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
This panel discussion considers the role of Indigenous men in addressing the issue of MMIWG2S+. It features a panel of prominent Indigenous men: former CFL player JR LaRose, journalist Sean Vanderklis and filmmaker Nick Printup.
To attend the event, please visit Brock’s REDress website.

Our Sisters in Spirit Gala
Friday, Feb. 12 from 7 to 9 p.m.
A gala film screening of Brock student and NC alumnus (2015) Nick Printup’s film Our Sisters in Spirit. Printup created the film as a student in NC’s Broadcasting — Radio, Television and Film program to explore the question of calling a national public inquiry into Canada’s missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the director. The event will be opened by Fallon Farinacci, a Métis woman who served as a member of the National Family Advisory Council for the National Inquiry into MMIWG2S+.
To attend the event, please visit Brock’s REDress website