Contributions to sustainability practices of faith communities in Canada: the roles of learning, action and faith

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Backer, Justine
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In a world of environmental crisis, set-backs, and political cloudiness, learning provides a bridge for individuals to achieve sustainability through action at a grass-roots level and beyond. My research explored the learning for sustainability that occurs in faith-communities in Canada. Faith-communities provide a unique platform for considering learning and sustainability due to their ability to organize, their institutional strengths and weaknesses, and the role of personal faith in people’s lives. Learning for sustainability was examined through qualitative questionnaires, semi-structured interviews and participant observation in two case studies of faith-communities in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Learning opportunities available within the faith-communities included organized activities, communication, and hands-on application. The resulting learning outcomes were broad and included categories such as waste management and energy use. Some learning outcomes resulted in action, which served to further disseminate sustainability both inside and outside the faith community.
Sustainability, Faith community, Learning, Transformative learning theory, Environment