FigTree Header 10.14


Fig Tree donate ad

To place an ad on 1200 pages - see our rates

Comment on this article

facebook logo
on our Facebook page

twitter logo
on our Twitter feed

Bookmark and Share

Share this article
on your favorite social media

Search The Fig Tree's stories of people who make a difference:

April 2016 News Reports

Sikh community hosts open house on April 24

The Sikh Temple of Spokane in Greenacres is planning an open house from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Sunday, April 24, at 1420 N. Barker Rd. The event was previously scheduled on Saturday, April 16.

Subarna Nagra, spokeswoman for the Sikh Temple, said they have been seeking an opportunity to invite and educate the community.

Cleanup following the recent break-in and vandalism is mostly done, but the temple is waiting for replacement of holy items, such as its sacred text, to come from India, said Subarna, who has a consulting business around diversity.

“It has been painful, but we are not victims,” she said.  “It’s unfortunate that the break-in and destruction happened, but we are picking up and educating the world.”

Subarna said the Sikh community has been uplifted by the financial, moral and spiritual support of community and faith leaders, coming to be in solidarity the day after an intruder vandalized the worship space the night of Wednesday, March 2.

Several came with home carpet shampooers to clean the carpets.  The Interfaith Council set up a GoFundMe site that raised $8,200 from 200 people in about 20 days.  Governor Jay Inslee recently reached out to express his support and partnership as the Sikh community heals.

Members of Sikh communities all over the world have contacted the Spokane temple to express their admiration with how the group has responded with grace and respect.

For information, call 892-3799 or email

Inland Northwest communities hold educational events for Earth Week

Earth Day Festival Spokane 2016 will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 23, at Riverfront Park by the fountain on Spokane Falls Blvd.

The mission is to raise environmental awareness, celebrate the planet and its natural resources, and promote sustainable, healthy living for people, said coordinator Amanda Parrish, watershed director with The Lands Council.

There will be food, music, vendors and more, including the Procession of the Species, in which children and adults use recycled materials to make masks to wear or dress up as their favorite animal species.  The parade begins at 2:30 p.m., near the craft booth in the Gondola Meadows.

Since 2007, the Lands Council has helped plan Earth Day.

For information, call 209-2408, email or check for updates on the Facebook event listing.

Gonzaga University is planning Earth Week events with Rock the Planet from 3 to 7 p.m., Friday, April 22, at the Foley Quad.

 For information, email

In addition, Downtown Spokane Partnership is organizing “Clean the Core” the week before with businesses and employees cleaning downtown.  They will display what they collected at their Earth Day booth. 

For information email

The Coeur d’Alene Earth Day Fair, “Trees for the Earth,” from noon to 3 p.m., Sunday, April 24, at the Coeur d’Alene Public Library, 702 E. Front, will include flash mob yoga, a birds of prey demonstration, a fun run, plus music, arts and crafts, educational booths, poetry reading and a T-shirt design contest.

Organizers for the Kootenai Environmental Alliance say it’s a day to learn how to take steps to protect and preserve the environment 365 days a year.

For information, call 208-667-9093, email or visit

The Idaho Conservation League announces an Earth Day screening of the film, “Love Thy Nature,” from 10 p.m., Friday, April 22, to 12:30 a.m. Saturday, April 23, at the Panida Theater in Sandpoint.  The film about relationship with the natural world calls for a renewed connection with nature as key to people’s wellbeing and solving the climate and environmental crises. For information, call 208-265-9565.

The Sandpoint Earth Day Celebration will include Earth Day related events—speakers, natural area cleanups, workshops, a vegetarian potluck and films on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays from April 16 to 26.

From noon to 4 p.m., at the Forrest Bird Charter Schools, 614 S. Madison Ave., will be a festival with art projects and educational activities for children, conservation films, an eco-fashion show and booths with local and regional educational, conservation and environmental organizations.

For information, visit

The Moscow Food Co-op and Palouse-Clearwater Environmental Institute are planning Earth Month on the Palouse.

Palouse Discovery Science Center at 950 NE Nelson Ct. in Pullman, is hosting educational events for children and adults.  For information visit

The University of Idaho (UI) Sustainability Center is facilitating “No Impact Week” April 20 to 26, with challenges each day to help students reduce their impact on the planet.  The Moscow Food Co-op is participating in a honey taste test April 21.

Moscow Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a Green Cleaning Workshop at the Hamilton Indoor Recreation Center from 7 to 9 p.m., Wednesday, April 22.

Washington State University Associated Students’ Environmental Sustainability Alliance and the WSU Environmental Science Club will present the WSU Earth Day Fair from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, April 22 at Terrell Mall.

For information, visit

Tri-Cities Earth Month Events will include a Children’s Photo Contest, “Postcards from REACH: Shine a Light on Environmental Action,” related to REACH Interpretative Centers.  Submissions are due Friday, April 15, and finalists will be announced Friday, April 22.

The month will include events and education on and by green businesses, organizations and resources. For information, visit

At Cowiche Canyon, there will be an Earth Day Walk from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 23, starting at The Weikel Trailhead.  For information, visit

The Chelan Earth Day Fair, which will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 16, at Riverwalk Park, will include gardening demonstrations, educational displays, hybrid and electric vehicles, solar power, recycling, green building, emergency preparedness, conservation and more. For information, visit

Compassion Games will be held April 16 to 24

The Compassion Games: Survival of the Kindest presents “Love this Place! Serve the Earth!” Week April 16-24.

Organizer Joan Broeckling encourages people to start thinking now about how they might “play” in this nine-day global challenge to inspire acts of love, service and compassion toward Mother Earth and all life. Players propose fun, creative ways to develop regenerative practices that celebrate life’s interconnectivity and cultivate responsibility to restore the Earth for seven generations, according to the sign-up page at

Joan invites people to post ideas on the One Peace Many Paths Facebook page.

One Peace Many Paths will have a booth at Earth Day on Saturday, April 23, at Riverfront Park.  The booth will have a “compassion for the earth” challenge activity for all ages.

Compassion Games include doing random acts of kindness or service projects, recording the number of volunteers, hours served, people served and money raised for local or global causes.

On April 21, One Peace Many Paths will help pull weeds at Drumheller Springs Park, a traditional Native cultural and spiritual site at N. Ash and W. Euclid.

For information, call 536-2811, email or visit

Council sets Meet the Baha’i Neighbors

The Interfaith Council’s Meet the Neighbors in April will be with the Baha’i from 6 to 8 p.m., Thursday, April 21, at the Marie Antoinette Room of the Davenport Hotel.  In that room, Queen Marie of Romania shared Baha’i teachings with people in Spokane in October 1926. 

Baha’i teachings were first introduced in May 1908 in West Central Spokane by a woman traveling by train around the United States, said Skyler Oberst, president of the Interfaith Council.

The council will hold its annual meeting at 6:30 p.m., Saturday, April 30, at the Spark Center, 1214 W. Summit Pkwy., to review accomplishments, discuss issues, decide future activities and elect board members.

At 2 p.m., Saturday, May 28, the council is planning Meet the Buddhist Neighbors at the Spokane Buddhist Temple, 927 S. Perry, and are arranging a visit to Sravasti Abbey near Newport.

For information, call 360-989-8217 or email

KYRS hosts Amy Goodman of Democracy Now!

KYRS will present “Democracy Now! 20 Years Covering the Movements Changing America” with Amy Goodman at 7 p.m., Wednesday, May 4, at Lewis and Clark High School Auditorium, 521 W. 4th Ave.  The event, a benefit for KYRS, will include a pre-event reception with Amy, said Lupito Flores, station manager of KYRS, Thin Air Community Radio at 88.1 and 92.3 FM.

Amy will share insights from her new book on the TV and radio news program she founded, and on movements and heroes who have moved democracy forward, said Lupito. 

In 1996 Amy began hosting “Democracy Now!” on Pacifica Radio to focus on issues and movements ignored by corporate media. Today it is the largest public media collaboration in the U.S., broadcasting on more than 1,400 public TV and radio stations worldwide, with millions accessing it online at For information, call 747-3012 or visit

Ashley Judd is YWCA’s 2016 luncheon speaker

Ashley Judd, actress, author and social advocate, will be the speaker at the YWCA Spokane’s 2016 Woman of Achievement IMPACT Luncheon on Friday, Oct. 7, at the Davenport Grand Hotel, 333 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.

Known for her movies and as the daughter and sister of country singers Naomi and Wynonna, Ashley is also a humanitarian worker and activist. She has spoken on issues including coal mining in the southeast,youth with AIDS, alleviating poverty, supporting social justice and educating girls worldwide.

In her memoir All That Is Bitter and Sweet, Ashley details how she was led into humanitarian work and making a difference.

Over 33 years, YWCA of Spokane has honored more than 200 women for leadership in their professional work and community service.  In May, the YWCA will call for nominations.

For information, call 789-9304 or visit

Professor offers sessions on ‘Understanding Islam’

Shannon Dunn, assistant professor of religious studies at Gonzaga University, is leading two sessions on “Understanding Islam” 7 to 8:30 p.m., Wednesdays, April 13 and 20, at St. Joseph Church in Otis Orchards, 4521 N. Arden Rd.

Given that Islam is the world’s second largest religion with a more than a billion followers, one-fifth of humanity, she believes it is important to know about Islam and Muslim beliefs, and to strive for mutual understanding.

She will give historical background on Islam, discuss continuities and similarities of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and address current fear and anger. Shannon, who has a master’s degree from Claremont School of Theology and a doctoral degree from Florida State University, teaches comparative Islamic and Christian ethics, gender and religion, and violence.

For information, call 926-7133 or email

Citizenship Day offers preparation for citizenship

St. Ann’s Catholic Church, Quiroga Law Office, PLLC, and Eastern Washington University English as a Second Language Endorsement Program are sponsoring a Citizens Day from 1 to 4 p.m., Saturday, April, 23, at St. Ann’s Parish, 2120 E. First Ave. 

Volunteers, who speak English, Spanish, Arabic and Mandarin, will help people complete the citizenship application and prepare for the citizenship exam, said Greg Cunningham, senior paralegal with Quiroga.  Immigrants will learn about the English, history and civics sections of the exam, and strategies to study on their own. Organizers will address fear some immigrants feel in the midst of growing nativist and anti-immigrant sentiments among a few segments of the population, he said.

“New citizens see the upcoming elections as an opportunity to have their voices heard,” he said.  “We will help citizens and immigrants register to vote.” 

For information, call 927-3840 or email

CROP Walk plans local T-shirt designs

Walkers for the 2016 CROP Hunger Walk will gather at noon Sunday, May 15, at the Spokane Community College (SCC) Lair, 1810 N. Greene St., for entertainment and recognitions. 

This year there will be new, locally designed T-shirts.

The walk is raising funds locally for Family Promise of Spokane and Greater Spokane County Meals on Wheels, and nationally for Church World Service’s global development projects.

Walkers may bring canned goods for the Spokane Community College Food Pantry for Students.

The walk, which will begin at 1:30 p.m., will be on the Spokane Community College campus, rather than the Centennial Trail along the Spokane River.

Organizers Randy Goss and Madelyn Bafus said the changes were made to avoid the costs of permits and portable restrooms, and to reduce the need for volunteers at water stations.

For information, call 468-4099 or email

Our Kids: Our Business events are April 13

The 10th Annual Our Kids Our Business Luncheon and Training is from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Wednesday, April 13, at the Integra Ballroom in the Spokane Convention Center.

The luncheon speaker is author Jonathan Kozol, who has worked 50 years among poor, vulnerable children.  His books include Death at an Early Age and Savage Inequalities.

The training from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. with Kent Hoffman, co-founder of Circle of Security International, will focus on working with homeless youth, attachment theory, strategies and intervention.

Jonathan will also talk at a 5 to 7 p.m. reception sponsored by Priority Spokane.

Our Kids Our Business is a coalition of child advocates and the public education arm of the Spokane Prevention Of Child Abuse/Neglect (SPO-CAN) Council formed in 1987.

The Our Kids: Our Business Call to Action began in April 2007 to raise awareness during Child Abuse Prevention Month.

For information, call 475-7841 or visit

Project Hope plans ‘Growing Hope’ benefit

“Growing Hope,” a fundraiser for Project Hope Spokane will be from 6 to 8:30 p.m., Sunday, April 24, at the Kendall Yards Welcome Center, 1335 W. Summit Pkwy.

Project Hope provides activities that teach youth from ages 14 to 18 the values of employment and positive contributions they can make to improve their neighborhood. The fundraiser includes silent and live auctions, and announcement of a new endeavor to train and employ more youth.

For information, call 724-0139, email or visit

UN Association holds event on Model UN

The United Nations Association of Spokane will meet at 6 p.m., Tuesday, April 26, in Jepson Room 111 at Gonzaga University, before a 7 p.m. presentation in Jepson’s Wolff Auditorium by Gonzaga Model UN students on conferences in Portland and New York.  The UNA and the Gonzaga University Center for Global Engagement are sponsoring the presentation.

Stacy Taninchev, president of the Spokane UNA chapter, invites current and past members, and people interested in becoming members of the United Nations Association to discuss the future of the Spokane Chapter of UNA.

For information, email

Center for Organizational Reform sets series

The 2016 Center for Organizational Reform (COR) Summer Series will be offered June 13 to 17, and 20 to 24 at 1100 W. 6th Ave.

The workshops, five focusing on individuals and five on organizations, will address “Confronting Overload and Depletion – Finding a Better Way.”

The series will look at individual and organizational overload, or lack of “bandwidth,” helping people learn how to increase bandwidth, and discover ways they can increase their capability to withstand ongoing stresses.

For information, call 380-3363 or email

YWCA hosts Courageous Conversation

The YWCA of Spokane will host a Courageous Conversation for Stand Against Racism Day from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Friday, April 29, at the YWCA, 930 N. Monroe.

A diverse panel will engage participants in dialogue on “How Communities Are Impacted When Public Officials Normalize Hate.” Stand Against Racism promotes the YWCA mission to eliminate racism wherever it exists and by any means necessary.

For information, call 789-9289 or email

South Asia Assn. presents Indian music

The South Asia Cultural Association of Spokane will present Indian classical music with Anapama Bhagwat on Sitar and Ravi Albright on Tabla from 2 to 4 p.m., Saturday, April 16, at the Unity Spiritual Center, 2900 S. Bernard St.  

For information, call 467-5558 or email