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A well-informed volunteer who’s helping us change the world

Actu - Portrait bénévole Marie-Ève Lépinay

Since late April, communications intern Marie-Ève Lépinay has been helping out at Équiterre, and she’s really making a difference. A student in the third year of the Bachelor of Communications program at the Université de Montréal, she is very interested in the local and organic food movements, which is what prompted her to apply for the internship in the first place. “It was the only internship that had a sustainable, accountable mission, and that struck a note with me,” she says.

Competent and extremely efficient, Marie-Ève has been giving Équiterre’s small communications team a helping hand with all kinds of things: compiling and analysing data from the website, social networks and other communications tools, reworking visuals, helping with event logistics and project coordination, besides doing work that “people don’t notice” — putting content on line, archiving files, editing corporate presentations — all those little things that make her coworkers’ lives easier.

A real busy bee

Like the leading figures of a major event to which she made a brilliant contribution last June (street theatre to raise public awareness about pesticides that are harming bees, as well as to Équiterre and David Suzuki's Foundation call for action on pesticides), Marie-Ève is always busy as a bee: hard-working and able to adapt easily to changing circumstances, which allows her to jump from one project to the next. With her strong motivation and winning smile, she’s someone we all like working with.

That motivation will soon be recognized by her university: In December, Marie-Ève will receive a departmental bursary from the Club des 100, awarded by the Université de Montréal to students who do unpaid internships during the summer session. One of the main reasons Marie-Ève was awarded the bursary was her sensitivity to climate change, which explains her involvement in Équiterre. “I can really relate to Équiterre’s mission, especially with respect to climate change, pesticide use in agriculture and Quebec’s (and Canada’s) dependency on oil,” she wrote in her application. “My father’s a civil engineer, involved for example in pipeline construction … so you can imagine the discussions we have!” she added, with a big smile.

And what has she gained from her internship at Équiterre? “All kinds of things! I’ve learned a lot about pesticides and food localism, two subjects I feel strongly about. The experience has made me want to continue in the field and has opened my eyes to all sorts of little things I can do on a daily basis. I bike to work now and I try to live a lifestyle that is as environmentally friendly as possible.”

Notice to dedicated, ecologically minded communicators: Équiterre’s communications team is still looking for talented interns, especially as fall is fast approaching and is going to keep us very busy, with the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris, an expected federal election, the Rendez-vous branchés (on electric vehicle initiatives) and lots of other exciting projects.