I had the opportunity to stand and acknowledge the work of Character Canada and Character Abbotsford.
The focus of this powerful organization is to “inspire character, enable leaders and influence community.” As they state it is not about being the character police or demanding perfection but rather “living through imperfections where true character shines.
When I was asked to raise my hands, and awareness of this organization, I was happy to do so because I share their expresses values of respect, responsibility, integrity, empathy, courage and service.
Character Canada and Character Abbotsford are grassroots movements aimed at sparking pride and ownership in each of its community members. Whether you’re a business, school, government agency or non-profit, the basic strategy is the same: inspire your people, identify your shared values and integrate them everywhere. The organization works hard to actualize its vision to build a community of character by inspiring character, enabling leaders and influencing community.
The group is careful to establish that they are not the character police or here to judge. They are not tied to any religious or political group, nor do they exist to pressure people to be perfect. Rather, they believe that it’s through living out our imperfections where true character shines.
The Character Abbotsford board of directors, established in 2011, have developed a Character Council of key community leaders who meet five times per year. This group works together to influence change through their annual youth forum, in which they host up to 500 students from their established schools of character.
They have also hosted two conferences entitled Character Canada, which have both seen over 300 attendees from as far east as Ontario. They’ve received formal recognition by character.org in Washington, D.C., and have been nominated for two Fraser Valley Diversity Awards. We feel confident this group is here to stay.
Respect, responsibility, integrity, empathy, courage and service
For Character Canada, their job, simply put, is to encourage character in their citizens, which, at the end of the day, leads to smart, heart-centred choices and smart, heart-centred action. It’s that easy, and they have values that, I think, we can all agree on: respect, responsibility, integrity, empathy, courage and service.
Check out my last Statement honouring Dieppe veteran Ken Curry.