Village Vancouver Newsletter and Calendar of Events - April 2013

Village Vancouver Newsletter and Calendar of Events 

April 2013

Linking up for a New Economy

Welcome to the April 2013 edition of the Village Vancouver monthly newsletter and Calendar of Events

It's always amazing how human society follows nature's queues, with city life getting a new spring in its step along with the blossoming of cherry trees and magnolias along Vancouver's boulevards.

This spring, it seems a great deal of human energy in this city is being devoted to linking up with other like-minded people to make a great common push for a new, regenerative economy and society. Cross-pollination and collaboration are the name of the game.

April begins with two important convergences that ought to generate a cornucopia of new connections and collaborations to lay the groundwork for a new economy in Vancouver. Starting on April 4th, the New Economy Summit (April 4-6) at UBC (of which Village Vancouver is a proud partner) will bring together hundreds of people to learn about and discuss everything from local food systems to economic democracy, community currencies and co-operative enterprises. Registration is free, so sign up today!

On April 5th, the Vancouver Evolver network is holding its spring social event and culture lab which will convene many of the people and organisations who are leading the way to a new economy today, including Village Vancouver. Meanwhile, the Sharing Project being spearheaded by Vancouver Tool Library co-founder Chris Diplock is kicking off its initiative to vastly expand the sharing economy in Vancouver with an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. Interwoven into all of these initiatives is Seedstock Community Currency, which formally launched in January and already counts more than 40 participating businesses.

In this month's newsletter, read about:
  • A Conversation with Rob Hopkins
  • New Economy Summit at UBC
  • Upcoming potlucks and workshops on Commercial Drive and Main Street
  • "Permaculturizing" our economy
  • Permaculture Convergence audio summary
  • Evolver Colab and Social
  • Stone Soup Festival
  • The Kitsilano Sew Op
  • The Sharing Project
  • Pour les Transitioneurs francophones
  • Vancouver co-housing update
  • Garden plots available in East Van
  • Trash Talk Project seeks recycling champions
  • StyroFree challenge needs your input!
  • Vancouver's first co-housing project
  • Vancouver Storytellers event
  • And more!
Happy spring!

Your April newsletter team,

Jordan, Sharon and Ross

Become a member today!

Have you joined the Village Vancouver community by joining our website? We hope you'll consider becoming a member of the Village Vancouver Transition Society as well, making our movement even stronger! It's easy to join - just click here!

Support Village Vancouver and local economic resilience in one go!

Now you have another way that you can support the work of Village Vancouver - and help build a more resilient local economy at the same time! Simply trade in some of your Canadian dollars for Seedstock Community Currency that Village Vancouver has received in donations from local businesses. For every dollar you contribute, receive an equal amount of Seedstock in return which you can spend at any participating local business. New businesses are being added all the time, so check the website regularly, subscribe to the Seedstock newsletter, or visit them on Facebook.

~From Transition U.S.~

A Conversation with Rob Hopkins

Transition founder Rob Hopkins
On March 22nd, Transition Network foudner Rob Hopkins joined Transition U.S. for a telephone conference call in which he speaks about the spreading, deepening and emerging aspects of Transition, and fields questons from listeners. Learn more about some of the exciting Transition projects underway in his home town of Totnes and elsewhere in the U.K.

Join us at 

The New Economy Summit: 

Redefining Prosperity, Rethinking Our Economy

 April 4-6 at UBC  

Village Vancouver is pleased to be partnering with New Economics Institute,  AMS Sustainability, Extraenviromentalist, One Earth, and others to help organize The New Economy Summit from April 4-6 at UBC.

We invite you to join us in examining how we can move towards prioritizing an economy which emphasizes human well-being and a healthy ecosystem while ending economic stagnation.

Registration is free! Click here to register now!

As climate change accelerates, inequality increases and the imperatives of global finance are driving speculative bubbles, we want to formulate a new approach to economic thinking. Because our political system hasn’t addressed an economic structural change, can Canada’s universities jump start transition to a new economy?

This will be a gathering of people who understand there’s something fundamentally wrong with the current economic system and pioneers who are already building a new economy. We invite participation from students from universities across the region, and citizens and organizations who are interested in building momentum for this movement. 

A stellar group of presenters, with several VVers among them, will explore a wide range of topics including:
  • Building a Local Food Economy 
  • Co-ops
  • The Transition Town Movement
  • Local Value Exchange
  • Ethical Investing and Social Markets
  • Sustainable University Endowments
  • Currencies for Campus Communities
  • Not-for-profits
  • Financing the Local Food Economy
  • Redefining Value in our Communities
  • Changing Economics Education
  • Dynamics of Craft Economies
Presenters include Herb Barbolet, Michael Barkusky, Paula Barrios, Morris Berman, Jordan Bober, Randy Chatterjee, Michelle Colussi, Matt Dickson, Darren Fleet, Patrick Francios, Derek Gent, Tom Green, Andrea Harris, John Helliwell, George Hoberg, Barbara Joughin, David Korten, Michael Lewis, Michael Linton, Donnie MacLurcan, Tara Moreau, Ross Moster, Ann Pacey, Ellie Perkins, William Rees, John Restakis, Benjamin Richardson, Conrad Schmidt, Juliet Schor (via skype), Christie Stephenson, Kate Storey, James Tansey, Vanessa Timmer, Elizabeth Ü, and Bob Williams.

More details can be found at

Commercial Drive Village Monthly Potlucks and Workshops

Our monthly Commercial Dr. Village Vancouver Potluck and Workshop will be Thursday the 18th of April.

Potluck (6-7pm): Bring something yummy for the potluck.
Workshop (7-8pm) – Bike maintenance

Bike need a tune-up? Bring your bike along, or come alone and watch how it's done! We'll have tools and people on hand with good knowledge of basic bike maintenance.

What: Commercial Dr. VV Potluck & Workshop: Bike Maintenance
When: Thursday, April 18th: 6-8pm
Where: Rising Star Housing Co-op (1556 E. 5th Ave.) common room
Why: Build community, eat good food and learn to fix your own bike!
Cost: Free!!!

Hope to see you there,

Commercial Dr. VV Steering Group

p.s. Commercial Dr. Village Vancouver hosts a potluck and workshop the third Thursday of every month.  Check out the Commercial Dr. Village Vancouver website for future workshops.

Main Street Village Monthly Potlucks and Workshops

Our March Village Vancouver & Little Mountain Neighbourhood House Potluck and Workshop will be Tuesday the 2nd of April.  

Potluck (6-7pm): Bring something yummy for the potluck.
Workshop (7-8pm) – Seed Starting & Seed Swap: Learn how to grow veggies from seed and swap a few seeds with neighbors.  We'll have the Main Street Seed Library, some soil and small pots to share.  If possible (but not required), please bring:
  • seeds to swap or donate to the Seed Library
  • small pots to plant seeds 
What: Main Street Village Potluck & Workshop: Seed Starting & Seed Swap 
When: Tuesday, April 2nd: 6-8pm
Where: Little Mountain Neighbourhood House (3981 Main St.)
Why: Build community, eat good food and start some seeds for your garden!
Cost: Free!!!

Hope to see you there,

Future Workshops:
Tues. May 7th 6-8pm: Chickens 101 w/ local coop visit
Tues. June 4th 6-8pm: ??? (got any ideas?)

Hope to see you there,
Main Street VV Steering Group (Ileana, Sophie, Jason, Randy)

p.s. Main St. Village Vancouver & Little Mountain Neighborhood House host a potluck and workshop the first Tuesday of every month at LMNH.  Check  out the Main St. Village Vancouver website for future workshops.

Check out the Main St. VV website or "like" us on Facebook: 

A Few Thoughts on "Permaculturizing" Our Economy

-By Lucie Bardos

There is no doubt about the fact that society has gotten itself into quite the environmental, health, and economic predicament over the past century or so. Our current agricultural and economic models are obsessed with market efficiency and consumerism, which means that they are great at extracting things (like resources from the Earth or labour from humans), utilizing them in the most cost-effective way, and creating a huge array of products that can be packaged and shipped anywhere in a jiffy. However, these models are seriously lacking in humanity and ethics, and value streamlined über-efficient production over things like diversity, human rights, health, and community. They are uptight, teetering and vulnerable, and are based on the assumption that cheap energy will last forever. Many people predict that they might break down a few decades from now as energy costs rise and their incapacity to change or adapt to new states spells trouble. This is why humans have begun to rethink things and devise innovative new holistic models that can be much more Earth/animal/human (aka. "life") friendly, resilient - and fun - if applied appropriately.

Read the whole article here...

Audio summary of 2012 Permaculture Convergence on The Extraenvironmentalist

The Extraenvironmentalist podcast (co-produced and co-hosted here in Vancouver by Village Vancouver member Justin Ritchie) has produced a wonderful, 2-hour audio summary of the best of the 2012 Northwest Permaculture Convergence. Learn what this revolutionary ethos and set of design principles has to teach us, not only about how we can feed our communities sustainably and abundantly, but how we can build a more resilient economy and society as well. 

Join Village Vancouver at the Evolver Colab and Social, April 5th

Building Community for the New Planetary Culture

Evolver Vancouver is a part of the Evolver Network which has been growing over the past 3 years in 40+ regions worldwide. During those past 3 years we have shared in the exploration of topics that affirm the paradigm shift happening locally and globally. We have spotlighted local and global projects going on and offered opportunities for people to meet face to face and potentially co-create further together. 

We invite you to participate in a collaborative social experiment, a culture lab where we will direct social capital towards:
  • Bringing together cultural envoys whose combining of efforts could benefit the future of Vancouver through its diverse networks.
  • Focusing on the efforts that will generate planetary culture while strengthening local resiliency ethically with an emphasis on reskilling, food security, locally produced goods and exchange of skills and services.
  • Linking generations
Licensed event.

Only $10-20 sliding scale, or pay half with Seedstock Community Currency.

For more details, see the Facebook event page.

Stone Soup Festival - May 11, 2013

Saturday, May 11, 2013, Noon-5pm

Britannia Community Centre Site/Napier Greenway
1661 Napier St @ Commercial Drive, Vancouver

Britannia Community Centre is pleased to announce and host the 18th Annual Stone Soup Festival, a celebration of food, art, environment and community, including a food market, local artists, community groups, talks and workshops, live music, tea leaf reading, children’s activities, free soup and more!

More than ever, people are aware of the issues of food security, the benefits of sharing resources and eating ‘local’. Stone Soup will celebrate the diversity of food in our neighbourhood, the environment and it’s importance to the culture of our community.

Features Of This Year’s Festival Include:
  • Children’s Seed Planting Workshop With The Environmental Youth Alliance: 1-4pm, West Kid’s Area
  • The Urban Food Garden: Planning, Tips & Advice From Victory Gardens: 1-3pm, Family Activity Room
  • Digging Economic Sustainability Into The Urban Food Movement, Talk by Peter Ladner: 3pm, Britannia Library
  • Help Grow The Urban Forest: How To Plant & Care For A Tree: Workshop by David Tracey: 12:30-1:30pm, Al Mattison Lounge: For More Info On Treekeepers Program:
  • Origami Workshop With Jan Nguyen: 12-5pm,  Britannia Site
  • Kickstand Bike Tune-Up/Workshop By Donation & Bike Games: 12-5pm, Britannia Site

For more information tel: (604)718-5800/

Kitsilano Sew Op and Music Exchange

The Kitsilano Sew Op will be meeting on the first Saturday of every month in 2013. Come join us and help build the Sew Op concept, refurbish machines, and work on creative cloth projects.

Not into sewing? Bring an album or some tracks released within the past month and listen to some new tunes in an inviting atmosphere. Snacks provided.

We are still accepting donations of used sewing machines. We provide these machines to community members free of change on short-term loans. Please contact Sandra at for details.

Vancouver Tool Library founder to take sharing to the next level - and needs your help

In growing numbers Vancouverites are turning to the sharing economy to save money, reduce consumption and connect with their community.

Initiatives like the Vancouver Tool Library, MODO Car Co-Op and The Hive workspaces have proven demand for shared skills and resources, and demonstrated the environmental, economic and social values of sharing. Our only question now is: “what next?”

Chris Diplock revolutionised the way Vancouverites
share tools by co-founding the Vancouver Tool Library.
To answer this question, Vancouver Tool Library co-founder Chris Diplock together with other colleagues has launched The Sharing Project. The Sharing Sharing Project is producing groundbreaking research to empower citizens, shape policy, and identify new opportunities for sharing in Vancouver. Through focus groups, interviews, and surveys, they are determining what you want to share and how you want to share it.

With seed funding from the City of Vancouver, The Sharing Project is now seeking to crowdfund an addtional $20,000 for this project. This funding will allow them to:

  • Create and implement an interactive public engagement website
  • Mobilize citizens and members of the sharing community across Vancouver to participate in their open survey.
  • Hire the best data analyst to help summarize their research
  • Prepare a groundbreaking hyper-regional report on opportunities for Vancouver’s sharing economy

Learn more and share some money with this groundbreaking project today! Contributions are rewarded with great perks including events, books, Vancouver Tool Library membership, coworking time at the HiVE, workshop time at Kickstand Community Bikes, Seedstock Community Currency and more!

Pour les Transitioneurs francophones...

Cherchez-vous de l'information sur le mouvement Transition en français? On vous recommend alors les bulletins du Réseau Transition Québec!

Cette publication a pour but de partager des ressources, des informations, des activités passées ou à venir en lien avec le mouvement de Transition au Québec et ailleurs dans la francophonie. Nous aimerions faire de ce bulletin un outil de communication réellement inclusif et participatif. Nous vous invitons donc à nous contacter pour participer à la rédaction ou pour suggérer des ressources ou du contenu à intégrer aux prochains bulletins. Vous pouvez nous écrire à l’adresse suivante:

Vancouver City Council Approves City’s First Co-housing Proposal

Last month, we told you about the efforts of Vancouver Cohousing to obtain approval from Vancouver City Council to build Vancouver's very first co-housing project in the Cedar Cottage neighbourhood. Cohousing is an affordable and convivial housing arrangement whose residents have relatively small private apartments but share a significant amount of common space. It is an alternative to highrise-style urban density, with a lighter ecological footprint and greater emphasis on social interaction.

This month we can report that City Council has approved Vancouver's first cohousing project, which will be only the 10th in Canada. Congratulations to the folks at Vancouver Cohousing for successfully adding a new affordable and sustainable option to Vancouver's housing mix!

Garden plots available in East Van

Located at 10th and Commercial Drive, is My Own Backyard (MOBY) garden with cobshed, nearby playground and greenspace.  The Annual General Meeting is being held on Wednesday, February 6.  For more info on how to become a new member, email 

Since its inception in 2008, Cedar Cottage garden (Victoria Drive and Hull Street) has grown to 100 garden plots with lots of common areas.  To apply for membership email or check out our website at

Bees coming to Cedar Cottage Community Garden!
On March 2nd, Cedar Cottage Commnity Garden will become home to a new beehive that will be stewarded by local residents Cylia Wong and Peter Finch.

Cedar Cottage community gardens to organise joint Earth Day celebrations
Members from Cedar Cottage Garden, Crow’s Point Garden and Copley Orchard are meeting to collaborate and create a same day event to celebrate Earth Day on Sunday, April 21 (possibly from 12-2 pm).  Each location will be doing something different.  More info to follow so please check the events page of Village Vancouver.  We hope to see you there.

Trashtalk Project Seeks Recycling Champions

Do you live in an apartment or condo in Mount Pleasant or the West End? Do you want to recycle your food scraps? Do the words "neighbour engagement" and "composting" get you jazzed up?

Then we need you for a unique project that seeks recycling champions to take the lead in creating innovative food scraps and other recycling programs for residents in multi-family buildings. 

With leadership from the Mount Pleasant and Gordon Neighbourhood Houses and the Recycling Council of BC, this is your chance to make a difference! 

For project details and information about how to get involved, visit the Trashtalk website: 

StyroFree Challenge and Green2Go need your feedback

StyroFree Challenge (, an initiative that aims at educating the public and restaurant owners about environmental and health impacts of polystyrene packaging and inspiring restaurants to embrace green alternatives, has partnered up with SPEC and the Tiffin Project. We are working on a new project called Green 2 Go and as a first step we’re collecting information on the current take-out container use and practices in Vancouver. Please help us gather the information by participating in one or both of the surveys and by sharing the surveys with your networks.

For Vancouver Residents

Vancouver Storytellers Evenings in Kits

On the 3rd Sunday of every month, Vancouver Storytellers hosts an evening of storytelling in Kitsilano.

Sunday, April 21st at 7 pm: Listen! Laugh! Enjoy! Stories for You!
ThemeTemperance & Judgement 
Storytellers: Larry Matier; Max Tell; Kira Van Deusen
Guests:  Lee Porteous, Victoria Storytellers Guild; Lenore Rowntree, Editor of  “Hidden Lives” which relates mental issues to creativity, $20; foreword by Dr Gabor Mate.
Host: Doreen Giesbrecht
Cost: $6; includes tea; treats by your donation
Contact: Mary Gavan: 604-683-1575
Location: 1805 Larch/ 2nd Avenue (Door and parking in alley by St Mark’s)


Village Vancouver Calendar of Events