The Otesha Project is an amazing youth-led organization that uses theatre as a way to get audiences across Canada to look toward a more sustainable future through local and global change in their everyday consumer choices.
Right now the Otesha team is on a Cycling and Performing Tour where teams of 12- 18 riders bike throughout different parts of Canada performing plays and offering workshops on sustainability and social issues to different schools and community groups. The Coast to Capital bike tour, a two month tour from Vancouver to Regina, is taking place as we know it. The riders started out last Friday, June 25th, and will end on August 26th. This particular tour will launch their version of the play Reason to Dream (which is actually what OTESHA(a Swahili word) means in English) in communities cross BC, Alberta, and Saskatchewan.
The Otesha group will perform in Vancouver on July 2, 2010 at the Kitsilano Showboat at 7pm, and in Chilliwack on July 5th at the Yarrow Ecovillage and July 6th at Cultus Lake Beach. The project all started when the founders Jocelyn and Jessica met in Kenya back in 2002 where they studied sustainable development in a traveling field school. The experience left them highly concerned about the inequality between North American society and the lives of those in Kenya.
They felt like trying to create change on a drastic scale may not work as well as they would like. Instead, they chose to make changes in their own lifestyles to reflect the desired worldly changes. Then on Feb 16, 2002, in Kitale, Kenya, the Otesha Project was born.
The team is welcome to newcomers who would like to volunteer or participate in the bike tours. Even if you aren’t a seasoned cyclist, the team trains together and won’t let you fall behind. Other than the bike tours, the project offers the Triple H Program for high-school students where Otesha members visit high-schools performing plays of daily high-school lives showing how students can alter than consumption patterns in their individual lives.
Also, the Otesha Project has published a book which is a behind-the-scenes look at how actions in our daily lives can change the world with a focus on clothing, coffee, media, food, water, and transport.
If you have any tour or volunteer inquiries, you can e-mail Kelly at Kelly@otesha.ca