Join date: Apr 19, 2021
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Hey I'm really excited to be here and to share in co-creating this project with you! Thanks for checking in and please read on if you wish to learn more about why I am here.... and how I got here.

I'm a longtime (since my teens) social justice and environmental advocate.

While my day job is designing, writing, editing and producing communications projects, my passion for Glassworks has been a key focus of my life since mid 2017 when I learned of this project from Michael McLuhan.

I immediately called up fellow founding board member and Beach Community Energy Cooperative (BCEC) fouding board member, Bob Spencer, to see how I could help get this net-zero housing co-op off the ground in Owen Sound.

Bob's passion for this project has been infectious. We and many others gathered for the first public open space meeting about Glassworks in November 2017, and it lit a fire under me.

The rest is history - it is my great joy to volunteer and help this project along.

I'm not new to co-ops - I contributed to get Eat Local Grey Bruce Co-op going when it was starting up and enjoy being a consumer member. I invested in Toronto's first wind generator through Toronto Renewable Energy Co-op, and was a member and resident of the Arcadia Housing Co-operative in Toronto.

Sustainability has been an essential part of my life, as well as social justice. There is always more to learn but it's been my great pleasure to share in this learning with some amazing people -- especially my husband and business partner, David Chevalier, and my two wonderful children who mean everything to me.

Here are some of the most memorable personal experiences I've had that have been so incredibly rewarding:

- learning from Elder Shirley John, Strong White Buffalo Woman, and receiving her guidance in relation to Glassworks Co-op

- canvassing on numerous campaigns that champion social and environmental justice for people like Dan Heap in Toronto and David McLaren in Bruce Grey Owen Sound

- working with Rob and Jaki Roy of Earthwood Building School in New York to build a tiny cordwood masonry cabin with an earth roof

- living fully off-grid in a 50-acre forest with my husband and my first daughter

- Producing the first video on solar energy systems for the home in North America

- Producing two videos on sustainable building published through New Society and carried by Mother Earth News and Real Goods

- Experiencing Ivan McBeth in creating sacred stone circles with human power and visiting him at his bender in the UK

- supporting Grey Bruce and Owen Sound youth in Fridays for Future demostrations which led to Owen Sound's first motion to commit to the Paris Climate goals in 2019 (and still continue to advocate for making good on that)

- participating in The Institute of Southern Georgian Bay's Social Finance Study Group with Marilyn Struthers and Rosalyn Morrison and many other amazing climate and social justice champions

and last but certainly not least,

- being a founding board member and Vice Chair of Glassworks Co-op

I welcome the chance to contribute and listen in this forum, and hold the hope that it will be a safe place for all to equally share in their vision for the future and make it grow to become a reality, -- a community. It is a great honour to be heard and to hear within this digital circle.



Zoë Thurling
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