UNAC- Vancouver Announces 2013 John Gibbard Award Winner

unacto1It is with great pleasure that the United Nations Association in Canada – Vancouver Branch announces the recipient of this year’s John Gibbard Award, Saskia Vaisey.   Saskia is a first year university student at the University of British Columbia whose dedication to promoting awareness of environmental issues both locally and globally is inspiring.

This past summer, Saskia biked 1,700 km from Vancouver to Inuvik with three students to raise awareness about the impact of climate change in the Arctic.   The group held workshops along the way and reached out to youth from summer camps, community centers, and youth centers.  Through blogs, articles and social media, Saskia worked to make North-South connections between youth, inspiring them to think critically about environmental and social issues.

Saskia wasScreen Shot 2013-10-27 at 12.13.01 PM also one of eight fully sponsored North American Youth Ambassadors for i2P’s Botswana Expedition. In Botswana, she ran a 182-km ultra-marathon in four days to raise awareness about the impact of water shortages in developing nations & about defying personal limits.   Saskia’s own story attests to the importance of defying personal limits as she went from battling Lupus five years ago to an ultra-marathoner today.

The selection committee was also impressed with Saskia’s work locally.  She has continued to present to classrooms and speak at community events on issues that she is passionate about.  She also volunteers with the Canadian Parks Society, the Mossom Creek Hatchery and the Catching the Spirit Sociey.

2013 is the United Nations International Year of Water Cooperation.  Saskia’s work in promoting discussion around climate change and water shortages highlights the fact that youth are actively involved in attempting to fulfill the ideals of the United Nations and making the world a better place.  The John Gibbard Memorial Award is named after a man who was dedicated to involving youth in the creation of a better world for all.   Saskia Vaisey embodies the ideals of Mr. Gibbard and the UNAC-Vancouver branch is pleased to recognize her inspiring work.

Today we salute Saskia and all the other young people who inspire us to try to make the world a better place. 

The John Gibbard Memorial Award will be presented at the Vancouver Unitarian Church, at 11:00 AM on Sunday, November 3rd.    The Church is located at 949 West 49th Avenue, at 49th and Oak Street in Vancouver and all are welcome.

Young Leaders Forum on Natural Resources coming to B.C. this Fall

unacto1UNA-Canada is pleased to announce that a Young Leaders Forum will be held this fall in three key cities across British Columbia: Vancouver, Victoria and Prince George.

These cities are hubs for natural resource development and innovation, governance and environmental activism, offering an incredible opportunity for Canada’s stakeholders and young leaders in the natural resource sector to engage in effective consultation and the development of sustainable, inclusive solutions.

Each city will host the complete programme of events, including the simulation, networking events and op-ed competition. The expansion of the programme to three different cities enables greater participation and community engagement.

The programme accepts a maximum of 50 young leaders to participate in each simulation (for the 2013 edition there will be different participants in each city). Admission to the programme is competitive and requires a letter of recommendation from your university or employer.

The 2013 programme is currently under development, please visit the About and Calgary 2012 pages for more information and return to this page for updates throughout the summer.

Detailed application requirements and online forms coming soon!