Projects Meeting the Needs of Greater Montréal’s Children
All of the projects selected by the FGM for grants, under the 2018 Community Initiatives Program, are aimed at improving the living conditions of children aged 0–17 in Greater Montréal, in particular by increasing food security and healthy environments, and by fostering academic success and supporting mental health. Some of these projects focus on several relevant goals simultaneously. Here are some of the initiatives selected according to the UN's Sustainable Development Goals:
- Sustainable Development Goal 2: Food security
In Montréal’s Bordeaux-Cartierville neighbourhood, the Petits Gastronomes project organized by La Corbeille will raise children's awareness of the benefits of healthy eating. The project includes food processing workshops in which fruits and vegetables will be recovered directly from local producers, processed and redistributed to vulnerable populations (the children themselves stand to benefit). As a result, the children will develop their knowledge and technical skills while boosting low-cost access to healthy foods. For its project, called the Graine à la Bedaine, the Club populaire des consommateurs de Pointes-Saint-Charles will be organizing gardening and cooking activities for parents and children to foster access to fresh and affordable high-quality produce.
- Sustainable Development Goal 3: Mental health
In Kahnawake, the Kanien’kehá:ka Onkwawen:na Raotitióhkwa Language and Cultural Center will be organizing a range of group activities for young women to develop their knowledge, self-confidence and sense of civic responsibility. Discussion circles, outdoor activities, traditional garment making and singing will be offered in various languages. The Center seeks to provide a healthy environment and support the next generation of women in their quest for self-confidence and a strong sense of identity.
- Sustainable Development Goal 4: Academic success
In Laval, Rencontre Theâtre Ados will be offering artistic expression workshops designed to foster the use of French in a fun atmosphere for young immigrants enrolled in French language classes. Using oral and written games, children will improve their French speaking skills, creativity and self-esteem, all of which are essential to long-term academic success.
- Sustainable Development Goal 11: Healthy environment
In Saint-Michel, one of the five most socio-economically underprivileged neighbourhoods in Canada, the Vélorution project (run by the Montréal-based Société d’éducation pour le cyclisme) will host participatory workshops to develop cyclists' self-sufficiency in bike mechanics, safety and mobility. Learning-based repairs will be available to high school students enrolled in the workplace preparatory training program. A comprehensive urban cycling education and practical training program will also be offered in elementary schools, in collaboration with Vélo Québec.
- Sustainable Development Goal 16: No violence
With its project, On gagne tous à se connaître, the Centre communautaire Radisson will be conducting an awareness-raising tour of youth centres (12–17 year olds) and family organizations throughout Greater Montréal to shed light on the realities disabled young people face, foster open discussion, demystify disabilities and fight all forms of bullying. Disabled young people will provide tools and host the tour. In addition to reducing discrimination and fostering inclusion, this project is designed to increase participants' self-esteem, communication skills and sense of empowerment.
These initiatives provide a glimpse into the 49 projects throughout Greater Montréal geared to help children dealing with various difficulties, including mental health issues, multiple disabilities, recent immigration, food insecurity, academic underachievement, low self-esteem, bullying and homelessness. Other projects that have been funded by the Community Initiatives Program will be presented in the coming months.