RECAA receives funding for Food Forums project


We are pleased to announce that RECAA (Respecting Elders, Communities Against Abuse) has received funding from New Horizons Seniors for an exciting new project called “Food Forums: Recipes for Interaction, Inclusion and Social Engagement.” Over the next year, members of RECAA will cook, take photos, write blog posts, record stories, host meals, and create recipe cards as they work together to counter elder abuse and isolation.

The project will include, in part, the creation of a food blog that intends to foster conversation, participation, and inclusion among the group and within the community. Ultimately, RECAA’s goal is to include elders’ voices in a primarily youth-dominated, foodie culture that has taken the Internet and social media by storm in recent years. Restaurant Day, which has been growing in popularity every year, is noticeably attended by younger people. Members of RECAA want to change that. They plan to host an elders’ led “restaurant” for Montreal’s Restaurant Day in August. By including elders’ voices in a youth-dominated foodie culture, RECAA hopes to continue to build intergenerational relationships and diversify dialogues around food, meal sharing, and inclusivity.

RECAA’s inspiration for writing this grant application emerged for two reasons. First, the group was looking to diversify their communication approach. After twelve years of using Forum Theatre as their primary mode of expression, members of RECAA were looking for new modes of expression, new strategies for community engagement, and different approaches to public outreach. Second, RECAA realized that their close-knit group dynamic has emerged through years of sharing ideas and stories during lunch breaks. Great things have happened around the table. These informal, meal time conversations tightened their friendships and sparked creative inspiration. For RECAA, formalizing the meals and sharing their knowledge through digital platforms seemed like a step in a refreshing but familiar direction. The Food Forum project will allow RECAA to explore creative new approaches to bringing awareness to elder abuse and mistreatment.

ACT-affiliated students will have the chance to be involved in the digital aspects of this project as well. Students will provide digital media workshops to RECAA members and will contribute to training members in photography, audio recording, and blog writing. ACT students will also have the opportunity to learn new recipes and cooking skills from members of RECAA.

RECAA is an important community partner of ACT. As an organization, RECAA has been talking with communities about forms of elder mistreatment for over twelve years. Members of RECAA come from diverse backgrounds and reflect the ethnocultural and multilingual diversity of Montreal. Members are of South Asian, Caribbean, European, South East Asian, African, Canadian, and Latin descent. RECAA uses theatre, specifically, Forum Theatre, as a medium to address themes of neglect, disrespect, and isolation. Members of RECAA have worked with ACT students in the past and this new project will present exciting new opportunities for more intergenerational exchanges.


Moving Pictures: The Atwater Library + ACT + Nuit Blanche on Sat. Feb 27th

We know libraries are packed full of fascinating stories but these stories are usually found in books that sit silently on shelves. This weekend will be a little different because the walls and windows of the Atwater Library are about to come alive with video footage from local Montreal residents.

In preparation for Nuit Blanche (part of Montréal en lumière festival), the Atwater Library’s Digital Literacy Project has worked together with older Montreal residents to digitize Super 8, 16 mm, and 8 mm home movie reels. Not only have the older adults involved contributed to the digitization and editing process of their home movies, they’ve created soundtracks to accompany the projections.

From 5:00 pm – 1:00 am on Saturday, February 27th, viewers will be immersed in movies from the 1940s through to the 1970s as the stories and sounds of Montreal residents dance on the walls and windows of the Atwater Library’s 188-year-old heritage building.

Join us at Moving Pictures: Moving Histories Out of the Attic and Into the Public as we share stories from times and technologies of the past at the Atwater Library (1200 Atwater Avenue; metro: Atwater).

The Atwater Library is a partner of Concordia’s ACT (Ageing + Communication + Technologies) Project and this project is specifically connected to the Older Adults Music Making Club. The project has gained additional support from New Horizons for Seniors.

If you’re interested in checking out a similar, older project, have a look at Memoryspace. This was a project that we worked on with the Atwater Library in 2012.

1200 Atwater Ave 

Metro: Atwater

Perpetuating exclusion in Wikipedia

Wikipedia has become an indispensable source of online information for students and researchers because of its ease of use as well as its reputation as a user-generated encyclopaedia of shared knowledge. But is it? Our research suggests a much more complicated and twisted tale. Wikipedia is a space of negotiation, contestation and struggles over inclusion and exclusion into “encyclopedic” knowledge.

Groupe Harmonie joins ACT as Community Partner

We are delighted to announce the inclusion of Groupe Harmonie as an official partner in the ACT project. Groupe Harmonie is a non-profit organization that works with elders with addiction issues in Montreal. ACT has been working with Groupe Harmonie since 2014 and together we have been organizing digital literacy workshops in local low-income housing buildings for seniors as part of the InterACTion project.