Village Vancouver April 2014 Newsletter and Upcoming Events

Village Vancouver 

Newsletter and Upcoming Events 

April 2014

Welcome to the April 2014 edition of the Village Vancouver monthly newsletter and Upcoming Events.

It's Spring!  It's Spring!  The garden seedlings are bravely emerging.  We're getting lots of precious rain for the soil and growing and lots of exciting gatherings and events are coming up!  Of note, this weekend the Sunshine Coast is hosting Transition training called Transition LAUNCH, an excellent weekend of exposure to building transition in your neighbourhood or 'village', wherever that may be. If you're interested, contact them immediately and they can likely accommodate your attendance. Also, Village Vancouver is excited to sponsor the Caring for All Creation: Land, Water, and Our Communities series, which features discussion and community engagement gatherings on different topics until May 13.  

Two weeks ago, SFU's Centre for Sustainable Community Development 25th Anniversary Celebration was well-attended by sustainability folks (see the picture of Ross Moster at the event on the right), many of whom have Village Vancouver connections. Among the festivities - stories, music,  and interactive games, including a "Futures Telling" booth, hosted by a Village wizard! For a video overview of the evening, click here.

In This Newsletter
  • Transition LAUNCH Workshop in Gibsons, BC, Saturday and Sunday, March 29 & 30
  • Neighbourhood Small Grants Program: 2014 Application Deadline April 7th
  • Caring for All Creation Series Continues through May 13
  • Upcoming Village Vancouver Food & Growing Workshops, starting March 30
  • 2nd Annual Earth Day Community Potluck, Apr 22
  • Vancouver will host 100 in 1 Day, June 7
  • Arts In The Village By Laura Lee Coles
  • Britannia School Food Garden Film Fundraiser, Apr 4
  • Langara Permaculture Design Certificate Course
  • Business Showcase - Three Feet Below, a canning CSA
  • Seed Saving Webinar
  • Join the Copley Community Orchard!
  • Exhibit: Seeds - Somebody Has to Save Them, Opens May 1
  • Healing Your Life Workshop, Apr 5-6
  • CONTRA DANCE! Mar 29
  • Vancouver Storytellers Event, Apr 20
  • Additional Village Events

Your April newsletter team,

Rhiannon, Jordan and Ross

Become a Member Today!

Join the Village Vancouver community by joining our website! We hope you'll also become a member of the Village Vancouver Transition Society.  Your annual membership will make our movement even stronger! It's easy to join - just click here!

Transition LAUNCH Workshop

9 am - 5 pm, Sat and Sun, Mar 29 and 30
Frank West Hall, 1224 Chaster Rd, Gibsons, BC

Transition LAUNCH is a 2-day course on the Sunshine Coast, packed with imaginative ways to delve into the practice of Transition. It provides practical tools and know-how on how to set up, run, and evolve a successful Transition Initiative.

Transition LAUNCH is for people, who:
  • are new to transition and want to evaluate the model and practice to see if it is for them
  • are part of a TI that is just beginning or about to start
  • want additional skills or awareness in how to communicate about peak oil and other reasons why we need to do transition, fundamental skills around awareness raising, fundamental skills in how to set up and run an Open Space event, or the basic skills in how to create and run a successful initiating group.
Facilitator:  Michelle Colussi.  Apprentice Faciliator: Leonie Croy

REGISTRATION: Spaces are limited so register early to avoid disappointment, Fee: $106.  We invite you to help us make the workshop available to everyone on the Sunshine Coast regardless of their financial means by offering full or partial sponsorship.  Enquiries: Leonie at  or (604) 886-8769 or visit the website.  For those coming from the mainland, The Sunshine Coast in Transition team is able to accommodate about 6 places for billeting on the Saturday night and the 7:30 am Saturday ferry from Vancouver will get one here easily to sync with the course.

Neighbourhood Small Grants Program:
2014 Application Deadline April 7th

Created by the Vancouver Foundation in 1999, the Neighbourhood Small Grants Program supports ideas that connect and engage residents in their community to strengthen their own neighbourhood.  Past projects have included neighbourhood block parties, a portable canning kitchen, emergency preparedness workshops, neighbourhood exchange-a-book boxes, drop-in spaghetti nights, seed libraries, creating bee pollinator corridors, collaborative gardens, Neighbour Savour, Re-skilling workshops, and bike tune-up workshops.  Start thinking of projects you might want to organize for your neighbourhood’s grants of up to $1,000.  Be creative!  Be collaborative!

Westside Neighbourhood Small Grants Info Session

Thurs, Apr 3, 7 - 8:30pm
MLA David Eby's Community Office, 2909 W. Broadway

Would you like $50-$1000 to make the Westside an even better place to live?  Come learn about Neighbourhood Small Grants and Greenest City Grants. Kits House coordinates the Kitsilano-area Neighbourhood Small Grants program, which is funded by the Vancouver Foundation and City of Vancouver Greenest City project.

We invite you to come and learn about the process for applying; the guidelines and to walk through the online application form. Come with your questions and ideas.  We will go through the goals and  requirements and give you some examples of past successful grants. We expect there will be some NSG veterans in the room as well.  Come early for tea and cookies served.  Hope to see you there. Information at, questions to, and an RSVP is appreciated at

Caring for All Creation Series Continues through May 13
Land, Water, and Our Communities
In Vancouver and Victoria or online.

All people are invited to The Caring for All Creation: Land, Water, Our Natural Community series, a weekly gathering of the diverse peoples who care about our lands, waters and communities in different ways. The series is premised on having to create a caring community that knows and supports each other as we take on the vital task of seeing, thinking and acting in new ways.

Every 2 weeks, we gather as large groups (one in Vancouver, one in Victoria, or listen online) to reflect about the various aspects caring for our Earth implies. Each gathering begins with a shared meal, followed with facilitated dialogue, guest speakers, and reflection around a central theme. It addresses the head, the heart, and our hands.

 Upcoming dates and bi-monthly themes for Vancouver are:

- April 1 - De-Colonization, Indigenous Wisdom
- April 15 - From Extractivism to a Gift Economy
- April 29 - A Culture & Politics for our Land, Water and Communities
- May 13 - The Art of the Commonplace

Village Vancouver Founder Ross Moster will be one of the presenters on April 15.

In the weeks between large gatherings, participants meet in smaller neighbourhood groups. A guideline of readings, activities and "field" trips are provided, as well as opportunity to meet with the facilitators and guest speakers again. Neighbourhoods gather to re-localize caring relationships - with each other and with their lands. The diverse gifts within their own neighbourhood will become known, enabling neighborhoods to better care for their community. In so doing, they will be simultaneously responding to global suffering. And will know they do so in solidarity with many others.

Everyone is welcome including children, young adults, elders, non-religious, religious, spiritual, long-term activists, industry workers, unemployed, the hopeful, and the doubtful. Calling all lovers to join in!

The Vancouver Series is held at Spirit of Life Lutheran Church, 375 West 10th Ave, Tuesday evenings, 6 – 9 pm, from March 4th – May 13 or listen in online on Monday or Tuesday Evenings. Another similar series is being held in Victoria. For more information, see To register, see

Sponsored by The Chester Ronning Centre for the Study of Religion and Public Life, KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives, Village Vancouver Transition Society, Spirited Social Change, Vancouver School of Theology, The Faith & Society Committee of the BC Synod, The BC Synod, Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, The Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada, The Eco-Justice Unit, Anglican Diocese of New Westminster.

On June 7th, Vancouver will host 100 in 1 Day.

100 in 1 Day started in 2012 in Bogotá, Colombia, with a group of Danish and Columbian students who wondered - what if hundreds of people united over one day to express the changes they wish to see in their city. Since, 100 in 1 has spread to more than 15 cities, including: Cape Town, South Africa; Kaluga, Russia; and Montreal, Canada.

What is it? 100 in 1 Day is a citizen-driven festival that unites people across the city through creating acts of urban change. These acts, or interventions, can raise awareness of social issues, inspire ideas, empower people or just be a lot of fun!

How to get involved? You don't need to have a big idea for an intervention, or an idea at all! Workshops are being held to support the development of 100 in 1 Day interventions - from idea to execution. Come to a workshop (next one scheduled Apr 2) and you’ll be supported in creating an intervention.

Find out more here:

2nd Annual Earth Day Community Potluck

Apr 22, 5:30 - 7 pm
Gordon Neighbourhood House

Join us on the evening of April 22 for the 2nd Annual Earth Day Community Potluck, co-hosted by MP Dr. Hedy Fry and MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert.  The event is being sponsored by Vancity Credit Union and The Attic Thrift Store.  We're also delighted to be partnering with Qmunity, Health Initiative for Men (HIM), West End Neighbourhood Food Network, Our City of Colours, and Village Vancouver Transition Town Initiative.  It should be a great night and we look forward to seeing you there!

Upcoming Village Vancouver Food and Growing Workshops

Marpole Neighbourhood Food Network Workshops

Sun Mar 30, 2 - 3:30 pm, Growing Sprouts, FREE!
Sun Apr 13, 2 - 4 pm, Peas, Greens and Chives, FREE!

Growing Sprouts Workshop: Sprouts are one of the most concentrated sources of nutrients on Earth. They can be grown in any climate, at any time of the year, in a limited space, for cent per liters. Nikoo Boroumond will show you how to grow your own sprouts at home with no special equipment. Bring a jar if you want to take some stuff home to start right away.
Peas, Greens and Chives Workshop: For the starting veggie grower! Grow your own ingredients for a hearty salad, outside in a sunny spot be it balcony or backyard. Bring a description of your growing area including measurements. Guided by instructor and gardener Rhiannon Johnson you will come away with the knowledge and seeds to plant, grow, pick and eat peas, greens (pac choi, beets, spinach, swiss chard, kale) and chives right now!

LOCATION: 8680 Hudson Street @71st, St. Augustine's (Temporary location for the Marpole Place Neighbourhood House)

REGISTRATION: Call 604-266-5301 or email You can also register by joining the food network: first join the Village Vancouver website, and then join MNFN at

The MNFN seed library will be present at each workshop; bring some seeds to swap or donate, if you'd like to.

Marpole Neighbourhood Food Network is sponsored by  VV and Marpole Place Neighbourhood House.

VV Spring 2014 Cultivating Food, Cultivating Community Series

Apr 10 - May 13
Strathcona Community Centre, 601 Keefer St.

Please join us for the Spring installment of this popular series.
We'll have a VV seed library present at each event; bring some seeds to swap or donate, if you'd like to.

Registration/Information: (604) 713-1838 or in person at Strathcona Community Centre. Please pre-register for the workshops. 50% Subsidies are available to low income residents of Vancouver with a Leisure Access Card. For details on how to apply, please contact Strathcona CC or visit

Arts In The Village
By Laura Lee Coles

A marked increase of plastics have been found in the stomachs of marine birds in the Pacific Northwest.   Recently, a study was released by researchers at UBC and published online in the journal Marine Pollution Bulletin.  Birds are found with all kinds of plastic in their stomachs and they are dying in large numbers. Stephanie Avery-Gomm, the study’s lead author and a graduate student in UBC’s Department of Zoology reported that  “The research group performed necropsies on 67 beached northern fulmars and found that 92.5 per cent had plastics – such as twine, Styrofoam and candy wrappers – in their stomach. An average of 36.8 pieces per bird were found. The average total weight of plastic was 0.385 grams per bird. One bird was found with 454 pieces of plastic in its stomach.

Artist Mary Bennett (Kitsilano Village member) and her recent eco-art project Bird on the Beach explored the effect of plastic pollution on seabirds and plight upon our wildlife through hands on engaged art project.

Through a series of four workshops participants explored and collaborated with the artist to build a sculpture made from recycled materials, which was displayed at the Vancouver Maritime Museum for World Wide Bird Art Installation Day on September 29, 2013.  Mary is very involved in many things involving the arts in Kitsilano and beyond.  For more information and keeping on top of what Mary is doing, see   Bird on the Beach was funded by Neighbourhood Small Grants and Greenest City Grants.

Langara Permaculture Design Certificate Course

Join a male-female teaching team on a 10 month, weekend urban permaculture adventure. There is no time limit to complete the course and if you miss any classes you can do them in the future with other Gaiacraft permaculture design courses at no extra cost. Contact for details

Business Showcase - Three Feet Below, a Canning CSA

Have you ever heard of a canning CSA? Three Feet Below is a trio of young female farmers who are all passionate about working hard on the farm and in the kitchen. They lease half an acre in Richmond (which is three feet below sea level…) where most of the produce is grown, and the rest is sourced from local farmers. They process their healthy and delicious products in Vancouver which includes a selection of jams, pickles, salsas, fruits in syrup, fruit butters, also crushed tomatoes, sauerkraut & kimchi.

Here is how it works.
  • A half share costs $348.50. This gives you 45 jars over the year, spread out into three pickups (includes a $0.50 refundable deposit on each jar).
  • A full share costs $675.00. This gives you 90 jars over the year, spread out into three pickups (includes a $0.50 refundable deposit on each jar).
Pick-up location will be at the River District Market starting at the end of August. Please check out for more info or email

The Transition movement includes supporting a vibrant local economy. Business Showcase introduces a local business each month that is a part of creating stronger communities and a resilient, sustainable future. If your business fits this theme, please send a short description to

Seed Saving Webinar

Canadians rely on only four plant species – wheat, maize, rice, potato – for 60% of the calories in our diet. Globally, we are seeing increasing concentration in the seed industry coupled with alarming loss of agricultural biodiversity. This reliance on a shrinking number of crops and the lack of diversity in farmers’ fields makes us extremely vulnerable to factors such as severe weather (storms, drought, and floods), pests and diseases, and rising soil salinity. In contrast, as Canada’s climate changes, so must our approach to food production. Broadening the range of crops and crop varieties we grow is critical to increasing the resilience of our agricultural system.

If we hope to achieve this, farmers require plant genetic materials (seeds) that are adapted to our specific soils and environments. Right now, 95% of the seeds that produce Canada's major food crops have been bred for uniformity and performance under controlled conditions. In addition, the vast majority of vegetable seed purchased and planted by Canadian farmers is not bred for our landscapes and climates.

The five “program streams” of the Bauta Family Initiative on Canadian Seed Security, affiliated with USC Canada, will address these issues. Through Farmer Support, Applied Research, Public Access, Online Seed Services and Movement Building, our program team will work with farmers, researchers, businesses, governments and civil society organizations to maintain and expand the biodiversity at the heart of a resilient food system.  More information is available at  A Seed Saving webinar is also available to view.

Britannia School Food Garden Film Fundraiser

Friday, April 4th, 6pm. Films start at 7pm, $10 - $20 suggested donation
Astorino's Hall, 1739 Venables St.

Please join us for our 4th annual Britannia School Garden Film Fundraiser including a silent auction and food, wine and beer for sale,

View two outstanding new films:

A River Changes Course - Winner of the World Cinema Grand Jury Prize: Documentary at Sundance 2013, A River Changes Course tells the story of three families living in contemporary Cambodia as they face hard choices forced by rapid development and struggle to maintain their traditional ways of life as the modern world closes in around them

Dancing Salmon Home - Winner of the Best Documentary Feature award at the American Indian Film Festival, 2012, Dancing Salmon Home tells the story of the Winnemem First Nation in California who travel to New Zealand to meet their salmon relatives for the first time in generations and return those fish to their rivers of origin that are being un-dammed.

Funds raised will help to support youth, children and families food gardening at Britannia Secondary School, the SEGA Girls School in Tanzania (Britannia's twin garden), and the Eastside Family Place Summer Garden Program (at Britannia).

Check us out on Facebook:

Join the Copley Community Orchard!

Now entering its third growing season, Copley Community Orchard is looking for new members Copley Community Orchard is an urban orchard located in Vancouver. It is a place to celebrate the benefits of growing fruit trees, berry bushes and other perennial plants, educating people on their cultivation, and creating a beautiful and productive space accessible to all. Members will have access to educational workshops on organic fruit tree care; they will participate in decisions about developing the site and on-site programming; members will also receive a share of any fruit that is harvesting during the season. Go to to become a member. We are just getting rolling for the season, so the spring is a great time to become a member!

Exhibit: Seeds - Somebody Has to Save Them

May 1 - Oct 13, 2014

The BC Farm Museum is opening a new exhibit exploring the vital link seeds have played in agriculture and pioneer life in Langley, and beyond: from vegetable farming, to grain growing, to raising livestock. It will explore how seeds have historically been bred, harvested, and processed, and how this past implicates our present.

Healing Your Life Workshop
April 5 - 6, Teacher: Philip Be'er 

During the last 30 years, I came face to face with desperately painful situations that often challenged my capacity to endure.  In 2009 I met a mentor who, through his own processes of personal healing, has combined the wisdom teachings of many faith traditions with the most successful breakthroughs in applied psychology. I will be presenting his roadmap to healing over two consecutive weekends.

If your life needs to change to prevent it from crashing; if you’re just coming out of a crash; or if you’re in the midst of a multi-year mess, this course could turn your life around. One $100 discount for the 2-day Healing Your Life Workshop on April 5th and 6th is available.  Contact me at 778.235.2990 or if you are seriously committed to a process like this at this point in your life and if you would like to receive this discounted ticket. To read more about the details of the course visit April 5th and 6th are the first phase of the Healing Your Life curriculum.  This is a Heart and Soul Transition Event.

CONTRA DANCE!  with the band Merry McKentys
Sat, Mar 29, 7 pm, $12 advance, $15 at door, $25 family
St. James Community Square, 3214 W 10th Ave

A lively evening of traditional dancing and live music with a traditional acoustic family band.

Perhaps the biggest family band in the west--four brothers, one sister, a dad, three fiddles, a guitar, a mandolin, and a piano--the Merry McKentys tour up and down the Salish Sea in a large wooden sailboat, making a big sound playing cheerful tunes with little pretension and big grins. Contra dancing is a fun, energetic form of traditional dancing. There is no fancy footwork required, and our merry callers will have you up and dancing in no time! No partner and no previous experience necessary!

Advance tickets:
online at
in-person at Highlife Records (1317 Commercial Drive) and Rufus' Guitar Shop (10th and Alma)

More about the band:

Listen! Laugh! Enjoy! Story and Song

Rise Up!   Rise Up!
Sun, Apr 20, 7 pm

Includes tea and potluck treats.
St. Mark’s Church, 1805 Larch

Vancouver Storytellers presents an evening of storytelling with local storytellers Mary Gavan;  Priscilla Jones; Larry Matier and guest singer Lee Porteous from Victoria.

For more information contact Mary Gavan at or 604-683-1575. Contact her if you are interested in hosting an evening of Storytelling in Kits on a 3rd Sunday of the month from October to May.

Additional Village Events

West End Food Scrap Drop Spots, Tuesday evenings from 6 - 7:30pm at Gordon Neighbourhood House and Saturday mornings from 10 am - noon at West End Community Centre and Gordon Neighbourhood House.

Kits Village Collaborative Garden Weekly Work Party, Mar 29, 3 - 6 pm

Kits Village Dinner Group, Mar 30, 6:30 - 8:30 pm

Village Vancouver Main St. April Potluck and Workshop: Food Gardens & Grants, Apr 1, 6 - 8 pm,  Little Mountain Neighbourhood House, 3981 Main Street

VV Transition Society April Board of Directors Meeting, Apr 2, 9:30 am - noon, DTES

Seedy Saturday: what to plant when (and where), Apr 5, 11 am - 1 pm, Vancouver Public Library - Kensington branch,  1428 Cedar Cottage Mews

Vancouver City Commons Placemaking Course: Story and place, Apr 5, noon - 6 pm,  Strathcona

Kits Village Collaborative Garden Weekly Work Party,  Apr 6, 12, 20 & 27, 3 - 6 pm

Awaken and Change Symposium, Apr 6, 1 - 3:30 pm, Kitsilano Community Centre, 2690 Larch St.

Kits Village New Dinner Group April gathering,  Apr 6, 6 - 8 pm

Creative Collaboration Course, UBC Continuing Studies, Apr 8 to May 6, 6 - 9 pm, UBC Robson Square

Kits Village Permaculture Blitzes (KitsBlitzes),  Apr 13, 11 am - 1 pm

Kits Village April Potluck and Workshop, Apr 13, 6 - 8 pm

VV Admin Working Group Work Party, Apr 16 & 23, 1 - 4 pm

April plastic recycling in Kits,  Apr 17, 6 - 7 pm

The World of Orchids at Figaro's Garden, Apr 17, 7 - 8 pm, Figaro's Garden, 1896 Victoria Drive

Permaculture Vancouver! Monthly Potluck and Workshop, Apr 17, 7 - 9 pm, Kiwassa Neighbourhood House, 2425 Oxford St.

Plant Bake and Craft Sale, Apr 19, 9 am - 3 pm, VanDusen Botanical Garden

From Here to There - Brown Bag Resiliency Lunches, Apr 24, 1 - 3 pm, Kits

Deadline for May Newsletter, Apr 24

Salon d'Elan Vital Monthly Gathering: Hands-on Earth Day Salon, Apr 26, 8:30am - 4 pm, Kits

Kits Village Dinner Group, Apr 27, 6:30 - 8:30 pm

Kits Village Seed Savers/Seed Library April Meeting, Apr 29, 10 - 11:30 am

West End Neighbourhood Food Network April Potluck, Apr 29, 6:30 - 8:30 pm, West End Community Centre, Bidwell Room, 970 Denman St.

Village Vancouver Upcoming Events

Click here for the full calendar of upcoming events!