By Kaz Haykowsky
This week a Newo delegation set out on an epic three-day trip to connect with our friends across the province, and enter into dialogue on the future of energy and life on these lands with our fellow treaty people.
The instigation for the journey was Cari’s “love letter to Newo”, which took the form of a nomination for an Emerald Award in the Community Group or Nonprofit category, presented by Syncrude Canada and held in Calgary.
Raj, Maroof, and I met up with Zach — the newest member of the Pecamu Makoce solar team — his wife Zoe, and their two young children Anastasia and Zavier, to set out on a bright May morning. Travelling as a family felt like a very “Newo” way to traverse the province. We took our time, helping each other cheerfully through the little hiccups of a road trip, eating together under the warm sun, picking the flowers of spring, and keeping our vehicles fuelled at Petro-Canada stations along the way.
In Calgary that evening we settled into our home for the week with our solar installation partners from Ridgeline Power: Drew, Cam, and Brandon; and the Pecamu Makoce team: Joby, Jake, and Kyle, who were in the city for two residential solar installations. We connected over a lovely meal prepared and sent by Margaret Rathnavalu.
The next day our adventure continued with a journey into the mountains to meet our partners, friends, and collaborators, Laura and Brooklyn at the Resilience Institute, who also happened to be nominated for the same award! We were struck by the immense good of their intentions and their work, and by their generosity and kind welcome. We came away feeling the strength of our unified purpose, and a sense that a win for either of us would be a win for us both.
Kaz, Raj and Maroof looking spiffy ahead of the Emerald Awards in Calgary, June 1.
That evening when we strode into the ceremony at the stunning Calgary Central Library, holding the kids in our arms, we felt peaceful in the sense that the trip had already been reward enough; we had no idea that we would be honoured with the Emerald Award for our work and our long-term visions. (You can watch Raj’s acceptance speech here.)
After the ceremony, we had a chance to speak in circle with people who work with Syncrude and Suncor, as well as the Emerald Foundation team. We invited them to dialogue with us as fellow citizens of this land about the legacy we are building with our actions today that will endure for seven generations.
We would like to express so much gratitude to you — our community, friends, and family — for your care and support. We are honoured to have you walk alongside us as we continue our work and show up for these conversations in a good way.