The Clothing Issue

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Décembre, 2010


How do you spell "Reason to Dream?" O - T - E - S - H - A
Riding on Hope   
The Otesha Project's Monthly Journal    
This Edition: Clothing    
December 2010    
Bundle Up!
Revolutionary Tours
Stories of Change
New Faces
Website of the Month
Mail of the Month
Monday Dec 6th @ 7:00pm
Reason to Dream: Book Launch
for details & to RSVP:

Monday Dec 13th
Launch of our 2011 tours
We begin accepting applications!
'Tis the Season for Bundling Up 

As we bundle up for winter, we're reminded that clothes should keep you warm, inside and out. But can clothes be good for the world - is it possible for outdoor enthusiasts to have both environmental ethics and outdoor performance clothing? In an industry where green washing runs as rampant as dyes into the river, it's not easy to know the environmental impact of your cloth choices. 

And, to top it off, not only does it matter what we buy - but how much we buy! According to the EPA Office of Solid Waste, Americans throw away more than 68 pounds of clothing and textiles per person per year, a figure that is rapidly growing. 


Fortunately there are many solutions, from making your own, trading with friends, buying second hand... or buying third-hand! (see Website of the Month, below) What's your fave used clothing store? Let us know!

clothing strip
Sneak Preview: Revolutionary Tours of 2011

saddling up
We're saddling up! Yes, we are just a few weeks away from opening applications for our 2011 cycling and performing tours, but here's a preview of our selection of tailor-made tours.

Grab your work gloves and ride from Toronto to Ottawa on our Phenomenal Food Tour from May 1st to June 26th, performing and farming all the way. 

Thespians sought for the People's Play Tourride from Toronto to North Bay from May 1st to June 26th with our new play - tights, wigs and make-up optional. 

Dust off your cape for our triumphant return to the West Coast for the Sunshine Coast Tour from September 3rd to October 29th this fall.  

Measurement and sizing details to come at!

Telling Stories of Change in Ottawa

Otesha's 2010 Organic Affair was a huge success:  volunteers at the organic affair 2010we made a lot of new friends and ended up surpassing our fundraising goal for the event!  After polishing off our newly-made vintage cakestands (please see DIY tutorialbelow), we polished off over 500 chocolate and tea cupcakes. 


This year's program for the annual afternoon tea featured a touching tribute to our fallen comrade Andrew Wolf, a taste of the Reason to Dream play performed by members of this year's Highlands and Islands Team,  and short videos of staff stories of change - which you can check out here!


Thank you to everyone that attended, to Canada World Youth and to the many others who volunteered their time to make the event so amazing - we could not have done it without you!


vintage cake standsVintage Cake Stand How-To

You can create one of these lovely pieces yourself by applying epoxy glue to the lip of one piece of stemware, inverting the glass, and applying it onto the centre of a large plate.  Allow time for the glue to bind and then apply the glue to the flat bottom of the inverted glass (now the top).  Immediately place a smaller plate onto the upside-down glass and steady it until the glue has a chance to bind.  


You can stop here for a double-layered stand or you can create another layer by repeating the above steps to create a triple-layered cakestand.  They're awesome for all kinds of foods, like cupcakes or finger sandwiches ...ooh la la!


Welcoming the Marvelous Matt!Matt and his best friend

A big Otesha welcome to our new Programs Director,Matt Schaaf. Matt comes to us from Winnipeg with a wealth of experience in project management and indigenous solidarity work. He's put his skill and passion to change-making in Latin America and First Nations communities in Northern Ontario. He also happens to be a Dad, so now Darrell has someone to talk potty with.

And, after two years with Otesha, we've finally said a tearful goodbye to Kelly Bowden. We wish her best of luck with her vegetables, sheep and hobbit house this winter in the UK.

Maybe Kelly left because Otesha wasn't paying her as much as Philip Marineau. Who?! 

Random interrupting fact!

The head honcho of Levi-Strauss was receiving  1,197,115 cents per hour in 2002 - compared to the average hourly wage of 23 cents  per hour for a worker in Pakistan, where most of North America's clothing is from (The Otesha Book, page 37).

Website of the Month

You've got to love the message being spread by Third Hand Clothing - a clothing business started by Grade 11 students in Smiths Falls, ON, to raise awareness about sweatshops.

"We want to raise awareness of sweatshops. We do not want to makethird hand clothing logopeople feel badly about buying sweatshop clothes, we want to give them an alternative. We go to second hand stores and buy used clothes. Then we put our own logo on the right side of each shirt. We sell the shirts for 6 dollars. 50% of our profits go to "World Vision: A Gift of Learning""

"Before Third Hand Clothing was created, our class was reading a book on "The Otesha Project". The Otesha Project is what made our teacher come up with the idea of starting a clothing business."

Check out this dynamic group of students on their website - under construction, but there!

Postcard of the Month
After every Otesha presentation, we invite our audience members to change the world by committing to one new hopeful action. Each individual receives a postcard, writes the action on the back, and if they complete the action, they mail it in to our office. We now have thousands of postcards from across Canada, and they are our proof that we are building a movement. Here's one of our favourites from this month:

I will Recycle All My WAter bottles And use A RefillAble one for Hockey
- Ty, age 8, Tignish PEI
Wish list
Thank you so much for the used tshirts, one sided paper, old office supplies & loads of PENS! this past month. 

We are not currently in need, 
please feel free to donate your items to another organization who is in need. 

Drop offs are welcome between 9am and 5pm 
from Monday to Thursday at The Otesha House (72 Riverdale Ave.)