WWF-Canada Blog:

Earth Hour Team Captain: Karyn Klaire Koski, community leader in Ontario

By Carly Digweed, Communications Intern, WWF-Canada

Roncesvalles community member, Karyn Klaire Koski, has shown tremendous Earth Hour leadership over the past few years – which made her nomination to be an Earth Hour Team Captain, a fairly easy choice. Here, Karyn talks her extensive involvement in her community, and what she has up her sleeve for this year’s event.

Roncesvalles team leader

© Claude Barnes / Keep it in the Family Productions

The Roncesvalles community has a reputation of being quite ‘green.’ Knowing that you are an active community member, could you speak to what Earth Hour means to you and this rather progressive neighbourhood?

Roncesvalles’ annual coming together for Earth Hour isn’t limited to our candlelight walk; many people gather in our eateries or even participate at home. To co-host 2013 with WWF-Canada, and to be selected as an Earth Hour Team Captain, is rewarding for me and for the Roncesvalles community.

I am known as an active community member for;

Can you give an overview of what Roncesvalles has done for Earth Hour in past years? What have these events/activities done for the community after from that hour?  

Roncy’s first Candlelight Walk in 2010 had local acoustic performers. In 2011, I approached the Parkdale BIA and both of our districts started in different locations and met up.  There, to everyone’s surprise, was an exuberant vocal flash mob. This video captures how fun Earth Hour can be.

The 2012 event was supported by families with children.  Local schools promoted the event by offering a pre-Earth Hour lantern building workshop for children.  At the end of the walk, an up-cycled candlelit, art installation greeted the masses.

Roncesvalles team leader 2

© Claude Barnes / Keep it in the Family Productions

How has Earth Hour impacted you and your community?

I believe I helped to package Earth Hour in a celebratory manner. I personally like to forgo phrases like war against, battle with, fight against, instead, using positive phrases to capture the great things we can and are doing to help the environment. This is not to say environmental stewardship should be underplayed, I simply mean that you can educate just as effectively with positive, joyous stimuli.

My profession has taught me to entertain masses. I know one can introduce and influence change in many ways. I have made it my vocation to bring awareness to all forms of enlightenment.

As for the community of Roncesvalles, I believe one’s neighbourhood is an extension of one’s family. This tribe we call mankind is integral to how we all grow, discover and evolve as humans.  The Earth is our home and we must respect it.

Knowing that Earth Hour has become a tradition in the Roncesvalles neighbourhood, what message of the campaign have you seen resonate with attendees? What do you hope will transpire after this year’s event?

Tradition is as the dictionary states, is a custom or belief from generation to generation that becomes fact and true, with the passage of time.

By being selected as an Earth Hour Team Captain, and a community member of example, I feel that other communities and advocates can aspire to also be recognized.

‘The ‘Earth Hour Team Captains’ blog series highlights on-the-ground leaders who are making a difference in communities all over Canada. Championing the spirit of Earth Hour with year-round actions, these individuals are making strides toward a greener future.

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