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September 15, 2000
City Announces Seven Winners of Neighbourlies Awards
  
Toronto's 9th annual Neighbourlies Awards were presented September 14 to seven
community projects that aim to improve the health of Toronto neighbourhoods and
quality of life for residents. A commemorative certificate and a cheque for up
to $2000 were presented to such innovative projects as an ethno-cultural
advocacy project for seniors, an awareness program for people suffering from
mental illness, civic participation for South Asian youth, and an educational
tree planting program for schools.

The Healthy City Neighbourlies Awards were presented at City Hall and included
a reunion of previous year's winners. The evening also featured a Festival of
Community, which included displays, music and street theatre, as well as
"healthy city buskers" who gathered feedback on ways of improving public
participation in local government. This was also the fifth event in the series
Building the New City of Toronto: Reflections on Civic Engagement.

Recipients of the 1999 awards are:

Brahms Bicycle and Repair Club (Finch and Don Mills)

The club collects used bikes, repairs them and sells them at low cost to
families. Youth who volunteer at the club are able to acquire skills to enable
them to find employment in this and related fields. The club is open to all and
works with the community to host special events like BBQ's, trips and bike
rodeos with the police department to promote road safety.

Ethno-Cultural Seniors Advocacy Project (ECSAP)

Seniors working with the Rexdale Women's Centre have developed a project to
assist seniors from the Pakistani, Punjabi, West Indian, Tamil, Ghanaian,
Spanish, Italian and Somali communities to address access issues to recreation
and preventative health services. Seniors from a number of ethno-cultural
groups developed opportunities for dialogue and action with local institutions
and organizations to improve access to programs and services and engaging in
activism at City Hall to help make city structures more accessible to
ethno-cultural seniors.

Garden of Eden - May Robinson Apartments

A community garden was planted at May Robinson-Toronto Housing Company where
residents from many cultures can grow their own food, share it with others, and
enjoy exercise in the outdoors. The tenants also have added to the beauty of
the neighbourhood. Food Share, the Community Banking Project and local
businesses have helped to support this project.

Instance of Resistance

Instance of Resistance is a project of the Psyche Pride Committee at Parkdale
Community Legal Services. The project is a week-long education and outreach
event that includes a vigil for those who have died in institutions, workshops,
an educational forum on legal rights, a cabaret, a BBQ, and a Parade. The
mission is to raise public awareness and empower those who have been
institutionalized and involve individuals who have experienced mental illness
or psychiatric history.

Oakwood Village Festival of the Arts (tie with Tree Life's Educational Tree
Planting Program in Schools)

The festival celebrates the arts by showcasing community artists and fosters
development of partnerships among community stakeholders, residents, artists,
business, and youth in the creation of artistic projects and cultural
expressions. The annual three-day event features theatre, literary evening, and
a family festival with music, dance, visual art and theatre. The festival
demonstrates that Oakwood Village is a good place to live and work and
celebrate!

Raj Palta

Raj Palta is a youth focused and youth run project which aims to encourage
civic engagement and capacity building among South Asian Youth. The prime
objective is to create a vibrant community that will overcome differences,
political and ethnic divisions that exist among some of the older generations
of South Asians in Toronto. The Raj Palta magazine, the Rhythms of the World
Festival, Blue Prints Arts, Dust of the Road exhibit, The Brown Book Project
and Workshops are some of the initiatives that Raj Palta has co-sponsored.

Tree Life's Educational Tree Planting Program in Schools (tie with Oakwood
Village Festival of the Arts)

This project provides educational material and instructions for school children
to retree their school-yard. 10 trees are provided for them to plant and help
care for. Currently this project is taking place at 7 schools in Toronto. The
project adds to environmental knowledge, achievement and appreciation of how
trees help in creating and keeping cleaner air.

The Neighbourlies Awards are the City's way to recognize projects that address
the Healthy City goals of Equity, Economy and Environment and which make
Toronto a better place to live, work and play.

The City has also developed the Civic Engagement interactive Web site to
encourage the exchange of ideas, concerns and opinions on civic engagement in
local government at http://www.ci ty.toronto.on.ca/healthycity/neighbourlies.htm.


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416-338-0338

 

 

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