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Pascal van Leeuwen

City: Salt Spring Island

Country: Canada

Impact Narrative

Pascal’s thoughtful proposal for promoting OVER:

“I was just brought to this page via some pictures featured on the website of The Guardian. I have browsed through the book online and am very impressed with the synthesis of images and information presented in it. In truth, it brought me to tears in some places.

I am the organizer of a workshop space at a small music, art and education festival on the west coast of Canada. The stated focus of this space is to promote sustainable and effective means of assisting our transition as a species to a sustainable and healthy way of living on the planet. To this end, we have asked local groups working in areas such as permaculture, food security, environmental activism, mycology, DIY ethics, divestment and other applicable fields to attend and give presentations. In addition to the presentations, we will have permanent installations with information about local grassroots groups, technologies and other information posted for attendees to peruse in their own times, with an emphasis on encouraging festival attendees to get involved with issues. I think that copies of the book could be used to great effect in this space as a catalyst and educational tool. I would have copies placed in this space for viewing by people who enter, to be read and viewed. We also will be featuring scheduled and moderated open-form discussions among festival attendees and having these book present and available would provide fantastic fuel to power these discussions.

The largely pictorial nature of the books would make them easily accessible in such a setting and provide instant impact. The general attendance of the festival is already tending towards socially conscious, progressive and active individuals and I feel that by including discussion of important issues such as overconsumption and environmental degradation into the program we will be able to create an impact that spurs people not only to participate in solutions but to grow the movement by speaking to others. As a music and art festival we are involved in the creation of culture that appeals to all ages, but in particular to youth. Involving youth in solutions to our planetary crisis is essential and through incorporating social and ecological consciousness into events with youth appeal we create a powerful symbiosis to counteract the myriad distractions that are placed in front of youth in these times. As one of those quotes in the book says: “We run heedlessly into the abyss after putting something in front of us to stop us seeing it.” And I believe we must break through these obstructions.

I believe the presence of such a hard-hitting and viscerally present book at this project will stimulate vigorous discussion at the festival itself, influencing both attendees this year and those they speak to afterwards to begin working towards solutions to our converging crises. I look forward to your response and thank you for your consideration.”


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