Canada is currently presented with a unique opportunity to stand on the global stage as a role model for equity and inclusion.
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Rated Red's Luke Williams weighs in on the realities of being a natural disaster volunteer. There's a lot you probably won't expect.
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Canada 150 is the perfect time to take responsibility for the kind of country we want to live in, and for what we can contribute to making it a reality.
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Your kid is holed up in the basement, alone in the dark except for the glowing screen and the alien invaders from their favourite video game. Again. Don't worry; an alternative to space war is on the way.
Let's all think about why and how Canadians can be encouraged to give their time, talent or treasure for the common good, and then find ways to put our ideas into action. And let's challenge ourselves to become an even more caring nation.
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It seems like a no brainer. Supporting charitable organizations and doing acts of kindness is the right thing to do. Most people get that. My family and many Canadians are very privileged. I feel we have an obligation to give back, to "pay it forward."
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We are presented opportunities everyday to make a difference in the lives of those around us, near or far, through our actions, time, or money. Whether we embrace that opportunity is up to us and, evidently, even the smallest of gestures or actions can veritably snowball into lasting results.
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Having been through this process once, I can safely say it does NOT get any easier. Each child is different. End of story. Here's what I've observed and learned over the course of having one child and now the second apply for postsecondary education.
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Today's young people are giving their time to the social causes they care most about -- be it the environment, education or access to clean drinking water -- and whatever the cause, they are vocal about it. For them, especially, social media has served as a great platform to make this happen.
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"Philoxenia" is a word that encapsulates the concept of showing love, compassion, and hospitality toward strangers. While I often hear the term "xenophobia," (fear of the strangers) I had never heard an antonym for it. Philoxenia is just that. I would love to see "philoxenia" become as commonly used (and practiced) among us as it's opposite. It's what the world needs now!
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Family Day is thus far a holiday without a tradition. Rather than retreat into separate rooms in the February darkness or risk it becoming just another greeting card holiday, let's imbue this unclaimed occasion with a tradition of giving. Not giving gifts, but giving back as a family to our communities.
Many Canadians gave online to the ACLU to help overturn the Trump administration's de facto ban on travellers coming from several Muslim-majority countries. The unexpected effect of globalization is citizens feel empowered to act and comment on the actions of another country.
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These 10 stories from Canada and around the world show how communities, governments and organizations are providing solutions that are reversing the loss of biodiversity and the ecological services that nature provides.
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With the new year upon us, everyone is busy making resolutions to change their lives for the better. While committing to exercise more, eat better, and quit smoking are all laudable goals, why not also set a goal to improve the lives of people in your community?
Travel is more than rest and relaxation for me. It's how I learn, grow, and find inspiration for my sometimes dull life at home in Toronto. Every trip I take has a profound impact on me, but I want it to have a profound impact on the people and places I visit too. These five simple ways I travel consciously -- both environmentally and socially -- are easy for any traveler to implement and are guaranteed to make every holiday more beneficial for you and your destinations.
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Visiting Tanzania in September changed my perception of what it's really like to go without. The people we met survive with the bare necessities. A roof over their heads, basic clothing and just enough food to survive. Yet, we witnessed such joy and hope in them, and for this, I fell in love with Tanzania.
I say "Bah Humbug" to The Fraser Institute for saying an average Canadian is less generous than their American neighbour. Their 2016 Generosity Index makes Canadians look bad because Canadian give much less to charity. Cash gifts are only one part of the generosity story.
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As a Canadian, it's hard to believe it's possible for teachers to successfully educate 104 children of different grades in a single classroom. Where children sit on a dirt floor, have an empty stomach, don't have sufficient school supplies for their needs. Children excited to be in school, no matter how far they had to walk under a blazing sun.
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Retirement years mean different things to different retirees. Some want to spend those years playing miniature golf in Florida, others want to fulfill lifelong dreams. Travel, giving back with their expertise, and becoming involved in their community in a significant way are just some possibilities. Life expectations at this stage can be very different from your partner.
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Parents often fear that a gap year will set their children back, stunting their education and career opportunities. On the contrary, hitting the pause button to gain life experience before resuming studies can actually boost future prospects.
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Travelling provides us nourishment to feed the mind, body and soul. For the soul specifically, voluntourism allows travellers to experience the world and make a difference at the same time. From helping children in South Africa, to rebuilding Fiji communities brick by brick, or even helping sea turtles thrive in Costa Rica, volunteering abroad promises to be an experience you'll never forget.
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National Seniors Day happened in Canada on Saturday and we didn't do anything about it. Countless moments and opportunities squandered to say, "Wait, I should call my grandparents," or "I should go to that senior's home and say hello to some residents," or even say some kind words to a senior on the street. We didn't do any of it. Did you?
Welcome to microvolunteering, 10-minute increments of doing good that can (mostly) be done from home. Code-slingers and charities are inventing ways to make use of these small pockets of downtime to give a growing movement of people the chance to step up for a cause.
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One of the mothers said to me, "As a mother of a malnourished baby, I am so thankful to be learning how to make this porridge!" She was not embarrassed, nor was there stigma, rather, she was thankful that World Vision was there to help.
I always liked David Cameron. Maybe it was because we're both fans of the rock band, The Smiths, but also (and more importantly) because he tried to use the privileged position of prime minister to appeal to the better angels in our nature with the "Big Society" initiative of his early government. The Big Society ideal was first referenced by Cameron in 2009. In a nutshell, the Big Society philosophy recognizes that a country and its communities are built as much by passionate volunteers, community groups and service organizations as it is by departments of the government.
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Creating something magical out of your life that is greater than you are is the key to a fulfilling life. Serving people and giving them value are just two ways to contribute beyond yourself.
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Some Boomers lost their way along the hippy highway over the last fifty years. They took a right turn into casinos and consumerism. Seared in my brain is watching a load of Boomer casino goers unload from a bus and waddle away. Poker chips in hand as they sink into the windowless abyss. Money (both having it and losing it) does things to people. Here's what it did to me.
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As seniors age, much of their time is freed from the commitments of work and family and they start to look for ways to participate more actively in their communities. As the saying goes, doing good makes you feel good, and the seniors who continue to make a difference every day are true testaments to that.
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Our planet is a very different place today than when your grandparents were born. Despite the copious amount of conservation work occurring on a daily basis by citizens, volunteers and environmental groups, biodiversity is continuing to be lost in Canada. We need to restore Earth's "factory settings."
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I have been fortunate to be able to assist on the ground with disaster relief in communities across Alberta including the Slave Lake fire in 2011 and the Calgary floods in 2013, and I've learned that cash donations, even small ones, are by far the most effective way to help those recovering from a disaster.
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This year consider giving your whole life a thorough clean. Out with the old and in with the new. Think carefully about what you like and don't like about your life. Take some time and challenge yourself... What is working? What is not working?
It's not surprising that young people are Canada's most active volunteers, representing about 66 per cent of those who give their time for a cause. Time is, after all, on their side. But our country's volunteering numbers might surprise you. In 2013, 4 out of 10 Canadians volunteered, putting in 1,957,000,000 total hours. This week, National Volunteer Week, we celebrate them, while also asking: How do they do it?