So why do we have the Peace and Environment Resource Centre, and what does it do?
The PERC exists to address several community needs:
- The need for alternative local media that address Peace and Environment issues;the mainstream press usually doesn’t, or covers issues very superficially.
- The need for a resource centre where alternative publications are available to the public. Local libraries carry a few of these, but not very many.
- An outlet is needed for local groups to communicate with the public. Most groups are too small and financially poor to advertise, and they are ignored by the media.
- The public need to be involved in finding solutions to environmental and social problems.
To address these needs, the centre has set some goals:
- To create an informed public on Peace, Environmental and Social Justice Issues
- Community involvement in these issues
- Provide assistance to local groups in getting their information to the public
In order to meet our goals, the PERC has many activities, and provides several services:
- The Peace and Environment News (PEN), published 6 times a year, in which local groups can print articles and place free ads for meetings, events and so on.
- The upcoming E-PEN electronic newsletter, containing highlights of the PEN and online site, distributed through partner groups
- A website portal to Ottawa’s environmental sector, featuring:
- highlights and archives of the PEN
- multimedia components
- an online resource library of environmental materials
- a directory of and links to local groups and resources
- Working with and supporting Ottawa area non-profits and place-based community groups through partnerships, web hosting, promotion, and cooperation
- Information handbooks, like the Bringing Nature to the City handbook (a wonderful resource for teachers)
- A resource centre with books, periodicals, and multimedia resources on environmental, peace, and social justice issues.