NIC Faculty Association Fundraiser in Support of Community-Controlled Development and Human Rights in Guatemala

Sharing this press release to help spread the word on behalf of World Community. Naomi Wolfe is the newest member of our programming committee for the film festival. She lived in Guatemala for 10 years and is a passionate activist on mining issues.

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North Island College Faculty Association presents a fundraiser event for Rights Action on Thursday, June 7 from 7 – 9 pm at the Stan Hagen Theatre, Courtenay Campus. In support of a July 7 – 15 delegation that is traveling to Indigenous communities adversely affected by Canadian mining operations in Guatemala, the NIC Faculty Association Human Rights Committee presents Eliza Gardiner, Naomi Wolfe and Fiftieth Parallel at this evening event that aims to raise awareness and funds for the NGO. Both Gardiner and Wolfe will participate in the July 7-15 delegation. Delegation members will meet with development, environmental, Indigenous and human rights activists and experts. The group will travel to Mayan-Qeqchi communities in eastern Guatemala suffering harms by Canadian nickel companies, and Mayan-Mam communities in western Guatemala suffering harms by the Canadian gold mining company Goldcorp Inc. In the gold mining-harmed regions, the delegation will participate in day 1 of a 2-day popular Health Tribunal being organized locally.

Led by Grahame Russell, co-director of Rights Action, this educational trip will enable participants to learn first-hand about Guatemala’s political and human rights situation, including on-going efforts to seek truth and justice for the genocide and war crimes of the past; about problems caused by the global mining industry (as well as other “mega-development” industries such as hydro-electric dams, production of African Palm trees and sugar cane for bio-diesel fuels); and, about education, activism and organizing work in support of community-controlled development, the environment, human rights and justice.

Gardiner, Vancouver Island University Faculty Association Human Rights Committee Chair , will perform her original folk-rock ballads accompanied by mandolin player Monique Raap. Naomi Wolfe, Human Rights Committee faculty rep from North Island College in Courtenay, will present a slide show which will include information about Goldcorp’s Marlin Mine in Guatemala and its harmful impact on the local community that she visited during last year’s trip to the Central American country.

The show will wrap up with the up-and-coming acoustic guitar duo Fiftieth Parallel – Jonathan Hinds and Philip Marchand – who will play a full set of original music that is sure to get toes tapping. With opening performances for Shane Philip, Delhi 2 Dublin and now Mindil Beach Markets under their belt, Fiftieth Parallel play their own unique style of progressive acoustic music drawing inspiration from artists such as John Butler and the late Michael Hedges, combining it with the contagious West Coast vibe. http://www.youtube.com/user/fiftiethparallel

Tickets to the event are available at the door; suggested donation is $15, but all contributions are welcome. Funds raised will go directly to Rights Action (rightsaction.org) and the non-profit organization’s ongoing support of grassroots organizations in Central America that work towards global equality, justice, human rights, environmental protection and a fair development model, particularly in mining-impacted communities.

All are welcome at this educational variety event that is sure to entertain! For more information please contact Naomi Wolfe: naomi.wolfe@nic.bc.ca or call 250-830-3184 .

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