Awesome Ottawa is giving two awards this month, one to Sofie Sharom to support the spreading of local love through postcards, and the other to Carol Ann Northcott and the Ottawa Children’s Choir to support the production of a virtual end-of-year concert.
“I started Project Local Love in 2017,” explains Sofie, “as a special project for Canada 150 where I created a series of Ottawa postcards to distribute across the city in the hopes that people would send them out, showcasing the beauty of Ottawa to others around the country. Each postcard came with a stamp so people could send them without any barriers.”
“I decided it was a good time to revive the project, but with a twist.”
“Given the current situation across the country,” Sofie continues, “I decided it was a good time to revive the project, but with a twist. Since no one can leave their houses I am going to send the postcards out for people. They just need to visit projectlocallove.com to fill out their postcard info and I write their message on a physical postcard and mail it out. It’s contactless and available to everyone at no cost! My hope is that thousands of people can send out messages to their loved ones who they can’t connect with, whether that be around the block or across the country—plus spread a little Ottawa and Canada pride.”
“This is a stressful time for everyone, and music, singing, and togetherness is a huge help.”
“With COVID-19,” explains Carol Ann, “the Ottawa Children’s Choir has moved all its rehearsals online. This is a stressful time for everyone, and music, singing, and togetherness is a huge help. Every spring we put on a concert to celebrate the hard work of the approximately 200 choristers aged 6-15 in our five choirs, so we didn’t want to end the year with only rehearsals—we wanted a goal and a vision to work towards, to help motivate and inspire everyone along the way. So we are developing a virtual concert!”
“Each chorister will record themselves singing alone at home,” Carol Ann continues, “and the individual recordings will be combined into 11 choral pieces. The concert will be free and promoted broadly. We hope it will provide a fun experience for our choir community, but also for our larger community in Ottawa. For example, we would normally have had choirs performing in senior homes and at charity events, neither of which is possible now. Nothing is more uplifting than hearing kids’ voices raised in song!” The free concert will be broadcast online at ottawachildrenschoir.ca on Sunday, May 31 at 3pm.
Sofie is a travel and wildlife photographer and works in the local tourism industry. Carol Ann is the Chief Risk Officer at the Bank of Canada and the President of the Ottawa Children’s Choir.
Awesome Ottawa is part of a global movement of self-organizing chapters forwarding the interest of awesome in the universe, $1,000 at a time. At each chapter, ten or so “trustees” each contribute $100 every month, and review short applications received online to decide on the recipient of their pooled funds—usually a local project, but occasionally a particularly awesome one far away from home. Globally, more than $4.5 million has already been awarded–$127,000 of that by Awesome Ottawa.