Best Special Event Program
HI - Québec, Auberge Internationale de Québec (AIQ) - Project Wall
Some time ago the team of the Auberge Internationale de Québec (AIQ) wanted to re-decorate the walls. The colours of these do not convey the vitality of the hostel's personality. There are quite a few posters up already, but the AIQ wanted something more.
The AIQ approached the Jacques Cartier Residential and Community Centre in Québec City, as the centre undertakes "mural projects" with young people in search of personal, social and / or professional growth. As you probably know, the Auberge de Québec is eager to get involved in the community by giving local young people a rewarding and enriching life/work experience. Our "Project Wall", created by six young muralists (aged 18 to 30 years) and 3 trainers, started last October 13 and will take eight weeks to complete. The AIQ asked young artists to depict their perceptions of the city of Quebec to convey them to travelers worldwide through a large mural.
The Jacques Cartier Residential and Community Centre is focused on young people and supports them in the definition and realization of life projects.
In addition to being beneficial for these young artists and for all travelers who admire these works, this project will have a positive impact on the presence of the hostel in its own neighborhood. Indeed, very close to the completion of project, a preview will be held on December 8 next to the hostel and will be attended by relatives, friends, players and media.
The group of artists is conscious of the need for environmental friendliness. The paper used to design models and sketches is recycled. The plastic paint containers are reused for each completed project. Moreover, they highlighted in one of the murals the "Écolobus", a new and free electric bus service circulating in Old Quebec. This may inspire the travelers from the hostel to use this service.
Obviously, a variety of Québecois cultural elements are illustrated on the walls of the hostel. For example, a coach symbolizes a means of transport long used in Québec. Also, you can see a group of young people on the Plains of Abraham celebrating St. Jean-Baptiste Day, National Day of Québec. The architecture of Old Québec, preserved from the time of New France, is also depicted (Old Québec is a UNESCO World Heritage Site). Winter scenes are also represented in the murals, showing (among other things) someone waiting for the bus while dreaming of a beautiful sunny beach. A sled dog, a Native American, scenes of daily life, and even the popular dish poutine are now to be found on the walls at the Auberge Internationale de Québec.
The murals become platforms enabling young people here to share their perception of the city with travellers from elsewhere the better to create awareness of, understanding of and respect for our culture.
The image at left shows snow boots gathered at the entrance of houses in Québec. This section has been designed by a young Mexican participant in the project.
Best Continuing Program
Auberge Rivière-du-Loup - St-Lawrence Discovery Package
Rivière-du-Loup St-Lawrence Discovery Package - includes guided tours of the Parc du Bic, hikes along the Trans-Canada Trail. The programming event can run from two to five days, is supervised by a biologist, allowing guests to discover the natural wealth of the locale, animal life and history of the region. The program includes trips on foot (hiking on the Petit Témis and TransCanada Trail) and by bike, showcasing such highlights as whale-watching and points of interest within the town of Rivière-du-Loup itself. This summer we had roughly 250 participants (about one-third as group business and the rest as individual travelers) The visits to Ile Verte have been the most popular along with the whale watching from the lighthouse. Watching the seals at the Parc du Bic is also very popular, followed by observation of the wildlife and flora in the mountains of Cacouna and hiking on the trail Kaburon to Saint-André de Kamouraska.
The program focuses on the ecosystem (both and land and marine) of the St. Lawrence River valley and is overseen by a biologist to showcase the natural resources of the region. In the hikes in the Parc du Bic, guides talk about the flora, fauna, geology and tides and how they affect the ecosystem.
The activity includes a visit to the townsite of Rivière-du-Loup, with visits to the waterfall park, local cafés, and a view of the sunset from Pointe-de-Rivière-du-Loup. As well, there is a visit to the lighthouse on Ile Verte and whale-watching from the lighthouse.
As with many hostel programs, it seeks to unite visitors from many cultures in a common understanding of the world around them
The activity is designed to be both low-impact and educational, to highlight HI-C`s environmental awareness.
Best Environmental Program
HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach - The Earth Easy Project
A little change can make a huge difference; a little effort can make the world better.
February 14, 2010 marked the creation of the Earth Easy Project at HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach. The Earth Easy Project was started as a means for our guests to offset their travel footprint while contributing to make a valuable difference in Vancouver's Jericho Park, which is also home to HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach.
A partnership between HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach and the Jericho Stewardship Group, the Earth Easy Project works to ensure the sustainability of Jericho Park. The Jericho Stewardship Group is a collective of individuals and non-profit organizations working together with the Vancouver Parks Board to make a difference in Jericho Park.
The HI-Vancouver Jericho Beach Earth Easy Project allows guests to offset their travel footprint in one of two ways:
1. By working to restore the natural habitat of the park... The second Sunday of every month, interested guests meet volunteers from the Jericho Stewardship Group to help restore the natural habitat of Jericho Park.
2. By making a donation...Guests can make donations at time of reservation on hihostels.ca, and also in person, at time of check in. This money is donated directly to the Jericho Stewardship Group to purchase natural plants and shrubs for replanting in the park, and/or natural habitats for park wildlife (such as bird and bat boxes). This year, guests helped to contribute over $1,200 to the work of the Jericho Stewardship Group.