Features

{mosimage}Plans to narrow Canada's foreign aid spending so larger amounts can go to fewer projects has left the Canadian Catholic Organization for Development and Peace wondering where Canada is going on overseas development aid.

In a second speech this year addressing "aid effectiveness," Minister of International Co-operation Bev Oda announced May 20 that Canada would henceforth concentrate its aid dollars on three "themes." The Canadian International Development Agency will limit its non-emergency spending to increasing food security, promoting sustainable economic growth and programs for youth and children.

Moral challenges confront food production

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{mosimage}When G8 leaders meet in Italy July 8-10 they will have two crises to talk about — the financial market seize-up of last September and the food crisis that sparked riots around the world last year.

While the G-8 has already spent more than $1 trillion to bail out the financial system, what will be done to help millions of people suddenly rendered hungry by a 43-per-cent rise in food commodity prices is still up in the air.

Fully Alive brought up to speed for Internet age

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TORONTO - Teen dating and online relationships will be among new topics in the revised family life textbooks for Ontario Catholic elementary students.

The Fully Alive textbooks for Grades 6 to 8 students are part of the updated second edition of the Ontario bishops’ family life program which starts at Grade 1. The original texts were published from 1988 to 1992, with the Grade 6 revised edition expected this fall and the final two revisions within the next few years. Earlier revisions were launched two years ago.

36 Toronto schools certified as ‘Ecoschools’

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{mosimage}Students across 36 elementary schools sang, rapped and rhymed their way on May 27 to certification in the Ontario Ecoschool environmental education program.

The Toronto Catholic District School Board officially certified these schools as EcoSchools as part of its third annual recognition event at Downsview Park. Each school was presented with an Ontario EcoSchool plaque for its efforts throughout the year.

African prison chaplains learn about Canadian jails

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{mosimage}Sr. Josephine Eke is quite impressed with the prisons in Canada and Anglican priest Rev. John Ngabo is surprised by the access and support various non-governmental agencies have in Canadian prisons. But the two African prison chaplains,  in Canada to learn about Canadian restorative justice efforts, may have as much to teach as they have to learn.

From the city of Jos, deep in the interior of Nigeria, Eke is used to working in overcrowded and underserviced jails where the food is poor and some prisoners are forced to sleep on the floor. But she’s also used to prisons where prisoners are in constant contact with their prison guards and wardens.

Toronto Catholic school trustees to remain under supervision

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{mosimage}TORONTO - The Toronto Catholic District School Board will remain under provincial supervision for another year but interim steps could be taken to allow trustees to sit at the board table, said board supervisor Norbert Hartman.

The Catholic trustees will not regain decision-making authority until after the next municipal elections in November 2010, Hartmann told  The Register. He said provincial laws specify that publicly funded boards can only escape supervision when their budgets are balanced.

Embracing Slow Food

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{mosimage}TORONTO - Before the lunch hour rush, chef Scott Vivian prepares locally grown leeks to accompany his slowly braised short ribs from a Bradford, Ont., farm.

Vivian, executive chef of Jamie Kennedy on the Gardiner restaurant atop Toronto’s Gardiner Museum , is an advocate of the international Slow Food movement which has been picking up steam in Canada. Its Toronto-based chapter has grown from five volunteers to more than 200 in six years, joining the 100,000-strong Slow Food movement in some 150 countries.

Slow Food movement supporters believe that access to good, clean, fair food is “an irrevocable human right.” Carlo Petrini started the movement in 1986 as a grassroots protest against fast food and the lifestyle it came to represent.

Toronto board launches Respect for Life Week

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{mosimage}TORONTO - “Nobody’s a nobody,” Dr. Andrew Simone, founder of the non-profit Canadian Food for Children , told more than 80 students, education assistants and teachers at the Catholic Education Centre.

Everyone is a gift from God, Simone said in his talk, part of the kick off event of the Toronto Catholic District School Board’s 15th annual Respect for Life Week.


Journeying through Martyrs' Shrine past

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{mosimage}During the past 15 years that he spent searching through boxes and files in a basement room at Martyrs’ Shrine in Midland, Ont., volunteer archivist Steve Catlin has come across many surprises.

One day he found a box marked “director’s box.” Inside, among what seemed to just be odds and ends, he found two pieces of burnt wood. Research revealed that these were remains of two posts excavated from St. Ignace II, the place where Jean de Brébeuf and Gabriel Lalemant were martyred.


Ontario to introduce school trustee code of conduct

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{mosimage}TORONTO - An upcoming provincial code of conduct for school trustees will include sanctions for those who don’t abide by the new rules, says Ontario Education Minister Kathleen Wynne.

“Having a code of conduct in place makes sure that everyone’s clear about what their roles and responsibilities are and should help if there were future situations of that kind,” Wynne told The Register after a May 9 speech at the annual general meeting of the Ontario Catholic School Trustees’ Association.


Hamilton's St. Mary's School to close after 155 years

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{mosimage}After the doors close at St. Mary’s Elementary School in Hamilton, Ont., Grade 8 student Joana Sampaio will swing by the school’s playground to meet up with the friends she first met in Kindergarten.

It will be a chance for them to reminisce about their time at St. Mary’s.