CFUW École Polytechnique Commemorative Award 


Below you will find the speeches made by three club members of CFUW North Bay (Anna Petruzella, Heather Chambers, and Brenda Robertson) at the 2015 Charitable Trust dinner held on December 1 at Average Joe’s.  Following these speeches, there is a copy of a letter from the CFUW Charitable Trust treasurer written in November 2013.  This information will help those who were unable to attend understand the reasons our club holds this dinner annually.

Introduction by Anna Petruzella

Over twenty years ago the CFUW Charitable Trust added a new Fellowship award to its program of Fellowships and awards in commemoration of the fourteen women who lost their lives in Montreal on December 6th, 1989.

This new award was aptly named the CFUW 1989 École Polytechnique Commemorative Award. The first award was given in 1991.

Initially only one award was given annually  but in the last few years donations to this fellowship have allowed that two be given. One in the amount of $7,000 dollars to someone in a doctoral program and a second $5,000 to someone in a Masters program. It is awarded for graduate studies in any field. The applicant must justify the relevance of her work to women 

The most recent two winners are Keisha Williams and Joelle Ingrao Kaarina was able to attend the breakfast at the National CFUW AGM in June and heard these young women speak about their work

Martha Kennedy one of our local members has served on the committee that chooses the recipients of these awards for several years and attests to the high caliber of women applying for these awards. If you know anyone who would qualify for these awards encourage them to look at the national CFUW website for the application procedure. There are on average over 400 applicants annually. Martha would love to have someone from our club join her in doing this work

All of the CFUW fellowships are funded from donations, no funds are taken from membership fees   Over the years many CFUW Clubs from across the country have made donations to the Charitable Trust for this award. 

CFUW North Bay has been hosting this memorial dinner since 2004. We hold this evening as close to December 6th as possible. Our club has opted that we donate  as individuals in order that we as  individuals are able to get an income tax receipt from the national Charitable Trust

If you would like to make a donation to the CFUW 1989 École Polytechnique Award tonight you can do so by   cheque made out to CFUW Charitable Trust.   Marianne Rogers our treasurer can collect them this evening if you wish and will send them off with a description of our dinner: You may also donate at later date on your own 

All details can be found on the CFUW national website. 


The Purpose of the CFUW North Bay Charitable Trust Dinner by Heather Chambers

The Charitable Trust Dinner is held yearly to honour the memory of the 14 women who died at the hands of Mark Lepine. Dec 6th marks the anniversary of the Ecole Polytechnique Massacre also known as the Montreal Massacre.

Twenty-six years ago in 1989, twenty five year old Mark  Lepine, armed with a legally obtained mini 14 rifle, shot 28 people before turning a gun on himself. He began his attack by entering a classroom at the university where he separated the male and female students. After claiming that he was fighting feminism, he shot all the women in the room, killing 6.

He then moved through the corridors to the cafeteria, and then another classroom, specifically targeting women to shoot. Overall he killed 14 women, injured 10 other women and 4 men in just 20 minutes before turning a gun on himself.

Mark wanted to be an engineering student at the university, but had missed the entrance requirements by two credits. He blamed the women enrolled at the school for “taking his   place” and stated during his shooting rampage that “feminists had ruined his life”

This horrible violent event must not be forgotten.

In 1991 the Canadian Parliament established Dec 6th as a Commemoration day. It is known as The National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence against Women. Canadian flags on all federal buildings are flown at half mast. In addition Canadians are encouraged to observe a minute of silence.

A white ribbon campaign was launched in London by a group of men in 1991, to raise Awareness of the need to end violence against women.

CFUW North Bay has been hosting this dinner since 2004.

We hope that this evening is one of remembrance of those young women who were killed and that it reinforces that we still need to work towards the goal of ending violence against women.


Closing Remarks by Brenda Robertson

The National Action on Violence Against Women began on Nov. 25 and continues for 16 days.

This evening we have come together to remember the 14 young women of Ecole Polytechnique, who had so much promise, so much joy in their faces in these photos.

We have had moments of silence to remember, to remember other women…

To remember Missing and Murdered Aboriginal women and women who are still in harms way.

Chief Paul Cook has shared with us what is happening in North Bay, with Domestic Abuse.  No soft topics, but challenging and heart wrenching.

What’s next?

Through your donations, young women will be supported in reaching for their dreams, pursuing their academic goals.  Support is also given to the North Bay Transition House, and Amelia Rising Sexual Assault Centre, True Self, the Children’s Aid Society.

What are some other Actions you may consider—

-Ensuring consistent government funding for women’s shelters

-Compliance with Legislation/policies about Violence and Harassment needs to be assured in workplaces, on campuses, in government, in the board room…

-Supporting the inquiry on missing and murdered aboriginal women

We have a National Action Plan on Human Trafficking, what about  a provincial Action Plan on Human Trafficking.

-Talking with family members and friends and encouraging their support in this effort

-Speaking out, speaking out at injustices, against media that demeans women, the justice system that continues to victimize the victims.

Nellie McClung, one of the Famous Five, said …..

“Women had first to convince the world that they had souls

And then that they had minds

And then it came on to the matter of political entity 

And the end is not yet…"

We may be declared Persons, but the work is not yet done.

We cannot grow complacent.

We continue to strive for Gender Equality to create a world where women have Economic Security, Where Violence Against Women and Human Trafficking are issues of the past.  Where women are part of the peace process as a given.    Where the  education of women and girls is without threat, but encouraged and supported.  All of which would make Families healthier and Communities stronger.

Before we leave tonight, I would ask that you take a moment to identify an intention, one thing you can do to reach out in support of women and girls.

Change happens when people actively participate, let us be part of this change.

Thank you, to each of you, for being here this evening,

Thank you to our guest speaker, Chief Paul Cook,

Thank you to all those who made the arrangements and plans for this remembrance,

And thank you for all your contributions to the National Action Day to End Violence Against Women.


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November 27, 2013

In Canada, December 6 is recognized as the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women.


Over twenty years ago the CFUW Charitable Trust added a new Fellowship award to its programme of Fellowships and awards in commemoration of the fourteen women who lost their lives in Montreal on December 6, 1989.

This new award was aptly named the CFUW 1989 École Polytechnique Commemorative Award. The first award was given in 1991.

Over the years many CFUW Clubs from across the country have made donations to the Charitable Trust for this award. Typically, clubs have taken a collection, usually in November or December, and have sent the proceeds to the Trust in the form of a single donation or as individual donations from members, who in turn receive a charitable receipt from the Charitable Trust.

Other clubs, in particular the Toronto Caucus (the six clubs in Toronto), CFUW Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge and more recently CFUW West Vancouver have held events open to members and the public to raise awareness of the significance of December 6th. The events were usually a luncheon or dinner with net proceeds being donated to the Charitable Trust.

The Toronto Caucus in the year 2000 under the guidance of Kathryn Manzer, who at the time was the Regional Director Ontario Central and initiator of the idea of commemorating the 14 women, held their first December 6th luncheon. This year will mark the fourteenth event and to date over $20,000 has been raised.

Similarly, CFUW Guelph, Cambridge and Kitchener-Waterloo together hosted commemorative lunches and dinners. From 2003 to 2009 a total of just under $20,000 was raised.

Recently, CFUW West Vancouver has held informal luncheons to raise awareness for the award and has contributed the proceeds to the Charitable Trust.
Now is the time of the year to think of how your Club would like to raise awareness of the ever growing issue of violence against women. If you would like to make a donation to the CFUW 1989 École Polytechnique Award you can do so by mailing a cheque made out to CFUW Charitable Trust and send it to: 

CFUW Charitable Trust Treasurer
1007- 28 Elizabeth St North, 
Mississauga, ON, L5G 2Z6

  

Joanne Jamieson,

Charitable Trust Treasurer