June is here and this is the last issue of the RECORDER until September. Enjoy your summer and make sure and send any announcements or stories that you would like to appear in the September RECORDER to me by the end of July.

I am very pleased to have two stories on worthwhile charities this month. I am especially pleased with the amount of money that was raised for Light Up The World at the CSEG/CSPG convention. I am honored to be involved in that committee under the leadership of Laurie Ross. Way to go! It is a great thing that the members of the geological and geophysical communities can support this worthwhile charity.


Taiwen Chen would like to let his friends know that he is now with Apache Canada as a geophysicist in the new venture team. He can be reached at (403)303-4664, e-mail taiwen.chen@apachecorp.com.


Many people in our geophysical community give unselfishly of their time and resources in volunteer work outside the geophysical community. The RECORDER committee would like to give our members an opportunity to share their experiences and details of the charity that they support. CS

Books 4 Kids

My name is Christine Marechal, I am a student planning to enter third year Honors Geophysics at the University of Calgary. I am also a Student member of APEGGA and will likely become the 10th G&G person in my family over 3 generations.

Having lived overseas with my parents in the oil and gas business, (Lynne Davies, Geophysicist at Talisman Energy, and Laurent Marechal VP Exploration Geosciences at Buried Hill Energy) I was inspired to help out with educational material to distribute to young people less fortunate than myself in the developing world.

I believe that two main factors dominate most others at a very young age in determining the potential of a person in any country: Literacy and nutrition. To assist, I recently created an Alberta Charitable Organization called Books 4 Kids. This will help with literacy in places where perhaps teachers or classrooms are not available, such as in small remote villages or in orphanages overseas.

We distributed large red wooden boxes to Calgary elementary schools to accept their generous donations. The Calgary school support has been tremendous and I have been able to collect hundreds of books, most of them donated by young children just like the ones we plan to distribute to. We have managed to collect books for children of all ages and of all genres.

The books will initially be shared by two orphanages in Botswana where I have established a contact through their Canadian Consulate, who will assure the distribution process. The orphanages not only provide a home for the resident children but they also are a gathering place to study and enjoy a meal after school for other children who live in the area. We hope to help their lives in a small way by promoting literacy and an appreciation for reading and higher learning by offering them both educational and general interest books. It is our belief that education is the most effective and sure way to provide people with a brighter future. If we can just help a few lives for the better then we have done the right thing.

Now that we have finished the first phase of our collection stage, we hope to be able to raise enough money to ship the books by the end of the summer in a shipping container.

We are now trying to raise money to ship and distribute the books to children in Botswana, so we are looking for small financial help or shipping donations to deliver all of the books. Any help would be greatly appreciated. To help out, please contact Christine Marechal at: books4kids@hotmail.com or telephone (403)-889-7644. I will be out of the country in June as I am volunteering overseas but will be able to receive emails. I will be returning in July.

I have received an estimate of $5000 to cover all costs. In the event that we receive funds greater than the cost of shipping and building our collection boxes, we will set aside money for future shipping and to build more boxes.

Light Up the World Charity Event – Laurie Ross, Divestco, Chair

Hopefully if you were at the convention in May you noticed the Charity Event being held on the exhibit floor. There was a silent auction and raffle in support of Light Up the World. This was the fourth year for the event and the third year that the proceeds have gone to Light Up the World. We have now raised over $60,000 for charity and $22,000 of that was this year alone. Thank you to all those who supported the event by entering the draws and bidding on the silent auction items. We also have to acknowledge all the companies and individuals who so graciously donated items to the silent auction. The generosity this year was amazing and we had a wide array of items for everyone.

would also like to send out acknowledgments to Pennwest, Fugro-Jason Canada, Fugro Airborne Surveys, Opengeo Solutions Inc. and The Driving Force for stepping up at the last minute to sponsor the three month lease on the Saturn Sky convertible. Jeff Polovick and The Driving Force were able to get us the convertible at the eleventh hour so that we could have it on the convention floor and have a draw for its use for the summer. You know, you enter these draws never expecting to actually win but as luck had it my name was drawn by an innocent bystander. Once the shock and amazement wore off I thought what the heck do I need with another vehicle and the money could be put to so much better use lighting up another village somewhere in the world, so The Driving Force said they would take the vehicle back and we could donate the sponsored amount to Light Up the World.

Thank you again for all those involved in the Charity Event including all the volunteers. Your hard work was greatly appreciated.

Light Up The world’s newest project is in Papua New Guinea, where solar-powered WLED systems will be installed in nearly 2,000 first aid posts in communities across the island nation. First aid posts serve as the first level of health care for remote villages and are often nothing more than a simple structure made of wood or palm fronds where a health care worker is assigned to treat everything from emergencies to common illnesses. Serious cases are sent to the closest health centre or hospital. Many of the first aid posts have no electricity and rely on kerosene lamps for light, or have to close after sunset. The project was created in memory of Capt. Nichola Goddard, the first female Canadian soldier to be killed in combat last year during a military operation against Taliban forces in Afghanistan. Goddard was born and spent the first three years of her life in Papua New Guinea while her parents were building schools in the country in the early 1980s.

Providing a safe and reliable source of light will dramatically improve the most basic level of health care in Papua New Guinea and eliminate the need to use kerosene lanterns, which present a fire hazard in first aid posts.: said Ambassador Evan Paki, Papua New Guinea’s ambassador to North America, based in Washing ton D.C. “ We deeply appreciate the assistance this will provide to the people of Papua New Guinea and are honoured by the Goddard family’s continuing interest in our nation. The fact that this project is conceived in memory of a young woman who gave her life for her country makes it even more meaningful.”

The foundation has also begun the final phase of its Tsunamii Relief Program in Sri Lanka, installing light in 2,000 temporary shelters established to accommodate 10,000 refugees from the December 24, 2005 tsunamis that devastated coastal communities in the Pacific. Light Up The World was one of the first aid organizations to respond to the massive natural disaster. This effort has expanded to include another 1,000 homes, due to its overwhelming success.

Light up the World was founded in 1999 to improve the lives of the approximately 1.6 billion people – or one-third of humanity that has no access to electricity and relies on kerosene, wood animal dung or other fuel based fire for lighting. The foundation has brought light to thousands of homes in over 42 countries and received international acclaim for its technological and social innovations. For more information about the Light Up The World Foundation and its projects, contact Roselyn Himann at r.himann@shaw.ca or visit the foundation’s website at www.lutw.org.



Share This Column