The following Blog post is a letter from PeaceQuest Regina members Ed Lehman and Kelly Liberet.
Please support the “Restore Funding for Katimavik September 2015” petition here and/or send a letter of your own!
Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,
We would like to start by congratulating you on your election as Prime Minister and on assuming responsibilities for Intergovernmental Affairs and Youth. Your election has given us hope for peace.
Secondly, we welcome your decision to stop the Canadian bombing raids over Iraq and Syria. This action is a powerful signal that Canadian values of peace have returned to the global stage and that Canada is again placing emphasis on diplomacy. We look forward to the day when all the world’s nations seek non-violent negotiated settlements to conflicts as a first option.
We urge your government to reinstate funding to the Katimavik program. As you know so well, Katimavik has been a wonderful program through which 35,000 young Canadians developed and honed transferable employment skills as participants. Since its inception in 1977, Katimavik’s mandate has been to develop personal, professional, and social competencies in the areas of civic engagement, autonomous living, healthy lifestyle and environmental stewardship.
By restoring funding to Katimavik your government would be demonstrating its commitment to community development, youth, and national reconciliation with Canada’s First Peoples which was a central component of the Katimavik program.
We believe the Katimavik program can play an important role in assisting with many infrastructure projects in rural and urban areas across both French and English-speaking Canada.
Katimavik is also a nation-building, youth-developing, peaceful alternative to military training. We hope you will see fit to restore this very valuable program.
Ed Lehman and Kelly Liberet (Katimavik alumnus)
On behalf of PeaceQuest Regina