Friday, June 28, 2013

BCHC Newsletter - June 2013


Webinar recording now available:
Guess Who’s Coming to Town: Health Impacts of Work Camps in Close Proximity to Communities

In 2012 -2013, BCHC and Northern Health hosted four Citizens Series webinars. These two-hour sessions invited dialogue from northern communities on topics critical to improving health outcomes of northern people. The last webinar in this series, Guess Who’s Coming to Town: Health Impacts of Work Camps in Close Proximity to Communities, received a lot of attention, as the health and social impacts of industrial camps are of great concern to various groups in the north. The speakers, Greg Halseth from the University of Northern BC, Ron Poole from the District of Kitimat, and Connie Kaweesi from the Northern Light College, addressed challenges, opportunities and proactive approaches to community planning around these issues.

The webinar recording and presentations are available here

For more information about the Citizen Webinar Series, please contact Stacy Barter at stacy@bchealthycommunities.caTo stay informed about the next upcoming Citizen Series please subscribe to our monthly newsletter here.

Welcome Jean!

We are very pleased to welcome Jean Macgregor to the BC Healthy Communities team as our Communications Specialist. Jean joins BCHC with over ten years’ experience in communications project management and expertise ranging from graphic design to strategic communications planning. With a background in the printing industry, post-secondary and not-for-profit sectors, Jean specializes in synthesizing multiple project elements and the needs of clients to forge campaigns, publications, and digital media. Jean holds an MA Professional Communication from Royal Roads University. You can reach Jean at:


Active Young Minds
By Kluane Buser-Rivet

What do you get when you put together a fantastic group of 25 youth chosen from 40 applicants, one coordinator, and 17 events and projects? The City of Victoria Youth Council 2012-2013 team!

With over 300 event and project participants, and over 3,000 Victoria youth reached, we’ve had an incredible year of championing youth voices and initiating change in the Victoria community!

One big change for the 2012-2013 team was a brand new governance structure that divided Youth Council members into five focused thematic Ministries: Art, Justice, Environment, Politics and Health, with a Media Team to support them.
  • The Ministry of Art created Canada’s first Youth Poet Laureate position, an exciting innovation! 
  • As well as three local park clean ups, the Ministry of Environment initiated the PedalBox Gallery, Victoria’s first mobile bike cart art gallery.
  • The Ministry of Politics hosted a youth-led political forum in the weeks before the provincial election that was attended by well over 100 people.
  • The Ministry of Health encouraged Victoria youth to enjoy the outdoors with Active Hope and to cook healthy, frugal meals on The Unsupervised Kitchen, a youth food blog.
  • Ministry of Justice highlights include the production of a Monologue to your 12 Year Old Self video, and a middle and high school LGBTQ awareness poster campaign.
  • Our Media Team has been working on a website re-design, the launch of our Twitter account, and has appeared on CFAX and CBC Radio shows ten times. 
A few projects on our horizon include Art Jam nights during the summer, the initiation of a youth caucus advising City Council, and a youth focused Bike Fest in the fall!

The Youth Council would like to send out a big thank you to everyone who has supported us in the past year, and especially to the City of Victoria for funding us, and BC Healthy Communities for being excellent hosts!

We envision a vibrant and inclusive city where youth voices are heard and valued, and we feel that we’ve made great strides towards that vision this year!

For any questions or comments, contact Kluane Buser-Rivet, City of Victoria Youth Council Coordinator at
Follow us on Twitter @vicyouthcouncil, and on Facebook.


Tessa Owens

Tessa is a student in Grade 10 at St. Michael’s University School in Victoria. Numerous documentaries, workshops and presentations have helped Tessa realize the importance and serious implications of climate change. Her mother, born in rural Tibet, instilled Tessa’s connection with the natural environment from an early age. During Tessa’s two visits to this region, she witnessed first-hand how closely the lives of people in rural communities are interlinked with the health of the surrounding ecosystems. She also spent a summer vacation living with orphaned Tibetan refugees in Dharmsala, India.

This past summer, Tessa had the rare opportunity to attend the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. She travelled there as a media team member of We Canada—an organization that gathered input related to happiness in the context of sustainability from people across Canada. We Canada travelled to Rio with the goal of influencing policy decisions for Canada and on the international stage. She came away from the conference understanding that the solutions to critical issues like climate change, ocean acidification, and deforestation cannot be achieved by governments alone. They require the energy, motivation, creativity and inspiration of everyone. She is working to do her part.

Recently, Tessa was a member of the core planning team for the Creatively United for the Planet Festival. As part of an evening event at the festival, Tessa was one of eight speakers who presented at a TED-style panel, which included Dr. Andrew Weaver and Kate Moran, the latter of whom was once an advisor to the Obama administration on the topic of ocean policy. At the festival, Tessa co-facilitated a youth political forum, which featured candidates in the BC election. As part of a separate endeavor, Tessa has been selected as one of 70 youth to travel on a Students on Ice expedition to Antarctica.


TRUST US: Total Respect Uniting Seniors and Teens
By Jodi Mucha

TRUST US project participants gathered on May 31 to celebrate all of their exciting accomplishments in Gorge Tillicum, and to build on their enthusiasm for the continued momentum of this community initiative.

TRUST US is an intergenerational project designed to bridge the gap between seniors and youth in the Gorge-Tillicum area. TRUST US was designed to create space and time for seniors and youth to engage in meaningful exchanges that would result in collaborative projects that foster understanding, respect, trust and potential creation of an intergenerational advisory committee to help other neighbourhoods replicate the same process.

As a result of six months’ work together, the TRUST US team have many successes to celebrate including:
  • Developed an identity for the project, and changed the name from “ Trust Me” to “TRUST US”. To that end, the seniors and youth developed a logo and the acronym tagline: Total Respect Uniting Seniors and Teens.
  • TRUST US communications pieces include: a complement of three videos (4 min, 14 min & 20 min), a tip card, and a public presentation poster.
  • Featured at the Emerging Research Across the Lifespan event presented by UVic researchers from the Centre for Early Childhood, Centre for Youth and Society, and Centre on Aging
  • Ten Steps to Foster Intergenerational Communities: A rack card was developed by the team, and is on display across Greater Victoria and elsewhere on Vancouver Island. Saanich Recreation facilities and many other senior-focused organizations have also made this information available.
  • An Intergenerational Community Garden Guide was developed by the team and was adopted by the Gorge Tillicum Neighbourhood Association. This garden guide has also been distributed through the Eldercare Foundation, BC Healthy Communities, and the District of Saanich to other neighbourhood associations, municipalities, organizations for consideration in age-friendly community garden development planning.
  • In partnership with Saanich Pulling Together volunteers, the Gorge Tillicum Neighbourhood Association, and Saanich Parks & Recreation, the TRUST US team organized an intergenerational community invasive week pull event in Gorge Waterway Park on April 20, 2013. Over 60 people attended (aged 2 to 82) to participate in this community work project. The event also included a TRUST US presentation and display, and an official presentation of the TRUST US Garden Guide to the Neighbourhood Association and the District of Saanich. Saanich also displayed their proposed plans for the new Gorge/Tillicum Community Garden. 
TRUST US is an intergenerational project partnership between the Greater Victoria Eldercare Foundation, Saanich Parks and Recreation, VIHA Yakimovich Wellness Centre, and BC Healthy Communities Society. The initial project was funded in part by New Horizons for Seniors Program. Find Trust Us on facebook

For more information on the opportunity to bring TRUST US to your community please contact:


Conference ~ Building SustainAble Communities
Where: Kelowna
When: November 25-28, 2013
What: This year's event features a half-day workshop hosted by BC Healthy Communities, entitled Building Healthy Communities Through Multi-Stakeholder Engagement & Partnerships. For information visit the conference website here.  


Rediscovering the Wealth of Places: A municipal cultural planning handbook for Canadian communities
Published by Municipal World, Inc.

Recognizing the new economic realities facing them, a growing number of municipalities across Canada are turning to municipal cultural planning as a powerful tool to support economic development and community building. These represent municipalities of all sizes and circumstances – from large urban centres to mid-size cities to rural areas and small towns. Rediscovering the Wealth of Places is a practical introduction to core planning concepts and tools. This includes a methodology for cultural mapping and the systematic identification of a wide range of local cultural assets. A strong focus is placed on the effective integration of culture in planning across municipal departments, and with a look at some leading practices from Canada and around the world. This important work includes chapters from Elena Bird, David T. Brown, Susan M. Gardner, Jeannette Hanna, Gord Hume, Jennifer Keesmaat, Mark Kuznicki, Colin Mercer, and Kevin Stolarick.

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