Concordia students join hands to bake for solidarity

The Multi-Faith and Spirituality Centre bakes for Resilience Montreal

An enticing aroma filled the hallway of Concordia’s Multi-Faith and Spirituality Centre (MFSC) as brownies baked in the communal kitchen on Nov. 15. Students worked together to make baked goods for Resilience Montreal.

Resilience Montreal, located at the corner of Atwater and Sainte-Catherine, serves as a non-profit day shelter, offering essentials such as food, clean clothes, a place to sleep, and supportive assistance to those in vulnerable situations.

Leading this gathering was Yamile Torres, the interim interfaith facilitator at Concordia, extending a friendly invitation for all to partake in the collective experience.

“At the MFSC, we work to create spaces in which we can not only learn from the communities around us but also to give back to them,” Torres said. 

The MFSC hosts monthly volunteering events at the Z-Annex on Bishop St., aiming to actively engage students in their community. This was their second cooking workshop with Resilience Montreal, and they are hoping to offer more in the future.

As the brownies cooled down, students gathered around the dining table, adorning delivery bags with messages and drawings. Conversation and music filled the room as volunteers chatted amongst themselves.

Torres explained that the food is delivered the next day by the MFSC staff, and Resilience Montreal distributes it among the people in need of their services. 

Torres hopes that the space and tools available to the MFSC will inspire and encourage their students to pursue their mission of forging connections with organizations that contribute to the Montreal community.

“It felt very community-oriented, and I felt very safe and welcomed there,” said Gloria Raphael, a volunteer and business student at Concordia who participated in the workshop.

Sadath Roshan, an engineering masters student at Concordia, works as the Office and Program Assistant of the MFSC. “I live close to Atwater and I’ve seen Resilience Montreal and the struggles they have on a daily basis. Cooking food for them was definitely something that resonated with me,” he said.

Elie Houde, another engineering student, explained that the volunteering experience fostered an atmosphere for learning and cultivating connections, all while contributing to an important cause. “The combination of service activities, creative tasks, and social games created a unique and enjoyable experience,” he said.

Volunteers shared their appreciation for the sense of belonging that was cultivated at the event. Houde described the atmosphere as “warm and welcoming.” 

“We are very aware that our students are busy people that have many responsibilities, so it is very beautiful to see how many of them give a good amount of their time in helping others,” Torres said. 

Torres expressed that one of the benefits of these events is the aftermath of our actions. She explained that while the repercussions of our actions may not always be immediately evident, it is crucial to understand that what we do leaves an impact on others and our environment. “And that is a great skill that can allow us to become more responsible for our actions and more active in our decision-making.”

Weekly events are hosted by the MFSC, and the Z-Annex is open on weekdays for students to use.

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