Thursday, February 26, 2015

BCHC Newsletter | February 2015

Save the Date!
Cities Fit for Children Municipal Summit in Vernon on November 12-13, 2015

Mark your calendars as this engaging event will be hosted on November 12th and 13th, 2015 at the Vernon Lodge. Initiatives such as public art projects and natural play spaces will be showcased along with many other successes to be shared from multiple communities. The overall goal of the event is to build and support healthy and vibrant age-friendly communities that value childhood as the firm foundation of growth.

Vernon is a beautiful city and a wonderful place to raise a family, but it is not without its challenges like most communities. Vernon is home to many vulnerable children and a lower average income than the provincial average, but is also a community that really cares and works hard to create better outcomes for all its citizens.

The summit Chair, Lynne Reside, along with steering committee members, including City Council members, the city’s long range planner and other partners, have attended past Cities Fit for Children Summits and have demonstrated a strong commitment to children and youth in Vernon. As such, one of their greatest successes has been the implementation of a Children’s Charter for the City of Vernon, which was a year long process of meetings, focus groups, community forums and a final celebratory signing of the charter by many community leaders at a huge family-friendly community event in beautiful Polson Park.

Stay tuned for more details about the event, and in the meantime if you have any questions, please contact: Lynne Reside at


Community Capacity-Building and Social Connectedness
Esquimalt Resilient Streets Kick-off!

How many of us know our neighbours? If things got difficult, would our neighbours be there to help each other out? What makes some streets and neighbourhoods have a sense of vibrancy and community where people feel connected?

This week, residents of the Township of Esquimalt came together to explore these questions with their neighbours as part of the Resilient Streets Esquimalt Kick-Off. Resilient Streets is part of the Building Resilient Neighbourhoods project which BCHC is collaborating on with lead project partners Transition Victoria and the Community Social Planning Council of Greater Victoria.

At the kick-off, participants explored how we can make our communities stronger and more resilient by strengthening the connections and relationships between neighbours on a street, or between neighbours in an apartment or condominium building. Together they shared ideas for strategies and projects to build more “resilient streets” where people:
  • Know each other and have strong connections
  • Share resources and other items to be more locally-reliant
  • Create opportunities for neighbours to interact and gather
  • Are able to cooperate and share leadership between neighbours in street or block issues and activities.

Couldn’t make it to the event, but interested in learning more? Visit the Building Resilient Neighbourhood website here 
or access the Resilient Streets Toolkit here.

For more questions please contact Stacy Barter at


North Okanagan Early Years Coordinator and Council Member
Lynn Reside
By Jodi Mucha

The North Okanagan Early Years Council (NOEYC) was started in Vernon in 2003 as part of the Success by 6 and Children First Initiatives in the province of BC. The NOEYC initiative focuses on supporting communities to understand the importance of the early years through public awareness and research. They identify local issues and plan strategically to work towards collaboration between local municipalities, school districts, Interior Health, non-governmental organizations, businesses, faith groups, and aboriginal and newcomer groups.

The NOEYC encompasses the communities of Vernon, Lumby, Lavington, Cherryville, Coldstream, Armstrong, Falkland and Spallumcheen, as well as, the Okanagan Indian Band. As members of the North Okanagan, Columbia-Shuswap Early Years Network, each member participates in a network of early years initiatives in the larger interior region and provincial networks. These networks help the NOEYC to plan, focus and collaborate on many initiatives that promote healthy communities for families with children from conception to age six.
An important part of the initiative is coordination.

As the Early Years Community 
Development Coordinator, Lynne’s role is to ensure that there is an inclusive community table, that action is taken to meet the goals of the strategic plan, and to initiate and share research to raise public awareness in all sectors about the importance of the early years for healthy, thriving children, as well as, healthy and vibrant communities. 

Lynne’s background is in Early Childhood Education and she has worked for many years as a preschool teacher and then as Executive Director of a large not-for-profit multi-age child care society in Vernon. She was also the co-chair of the North Okanagan Early Years Council for five years and then became the Early Years Coordinator in 2007. In 2010, Lynne took on the role of Regional Success by 6 Manager for the United Way and Regional Children First (MCFD) Coordinator.

Currently, Lynne sits on the Provincial Advisory of the Early Years Community Developers Institute, the provincial board of the Early Childhood Educators of BC, the Board of the Food Action Society of the North Okanagan and is also very excited to be the Chair of the Cities Fit for Children Steering Committee for the 2015 Cities Fit for Children Summit in Vernon.


Thinkpiece Feature
Partnering for Change: Building new relationships for the health and well-being of northern First Nations people and communities 

In light of the newly created First Nations Health Authority and as part of our ongoing provocative Citizens Series Webinars (hosted by BCHC and Northern Health) we recently hosted the webinar “Partnering for Change:Building new relationships for the health and well-being of northern FirstNations people and communities”.  This webinar in particular provided the opportunity for speakers from Northern Health, the First Nations Health Authority (FNHA), and the Northern First Nations Health Partnership Committee to share their perspectives on the partnership work undertaken in northern BC to improve the health and well-being of First Nations people and communities. 

This month we are featuring the Thinkpiece created for the webinar “Partnering for Change: Building new relationships for the health and well-being of northern First Nations people and communities” and written by Hilary McGregor from Northern Health.  The Thinkpiece addresses the importance of First Nations Health collaboration and the changes happening in the north. 

To read the Thinkpiece click here

The webinar recording and a range of informative materials and resources on this topic are available on our BCHC website and can be found here.


Northern Health Citizen Series
Where: Online and at various host sites across BC
Cost: Free 

THURSDAY, APRIL 16, 2015 (1:30-3:30 PM PDT)
The Best is Yet to Be: Engaging Seniors' Wisdom and Voices in Building Healthy Age-friendly Communities.
Register Here

THURSDAY, JUNE 9, 2015 (1:30-3:30 PM PDT) NEW DATE!
It's a Marathon, Not a Sprint: Leveraging the Canada Winter Games for Healthy Active Communities in the Long Run.
Register Here

    For questions or to register, please contact Angela Bello at

    To watch the recording from previous webinars, go to the Citizen Series Project page on the BCHC website and follow the links to each past event.


    Recommended by Jodi Mucha
    Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now
    By Margaret J. Wheatley and Deborah Frieze

    In this era of increasingly complex problems and shrinking resources, can we find meaningful and enduring solutions to the challenges we face today as individuals, communities and nations?

    Margaret Wheatley and Deborah Frieze invite you on a learning journey to seven communities around the world to meet people who have walked out of limiting beliefs and assumptions and walked on to create healthy and resilient communities. These Walk Outs who Walk On use their ingenuity and caring to figure out how to work with what they have to create what they need.

    Source: Amazon

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