Housing conference focuses on partnerships
Partnerships between non-profit housing providers, developers and municipalities were the focus of an affordable housing conference that was held in Richmond this week. The Housing Central conference welcomed more than 1,200 delegates to explore solutions to the province’s housing crisis. The conference featured keynote speakers like Housing Minister Selina Robinson and Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. The conference was put together by the B.C. Non-Profit Housing Association, Co-op Housing Federation of B.C. and the Aboriginal Housing Management Association “We’re showing governments that we can work together on solving this problem,” said Kishone Roy, CEO of the B.C. Non-Profit Housing Association.” Now we need government to start partnering with each other and with us if we’re going to tackle this affordable housing crisis.” We’ll be hearing more about the conference, and from those who attended and spoke, in future shows of Each for All.
B.C. credit unions buying into social network company
A pair of B.C. credit unions has bought into the Kelowna company behind the volunteer-oriented social network, Volinspire. Combining elements of Facebook, LinkedIn and Fitbit, Volinspire allows users to find volunteer opportunities in their communities that are tailored to their own interests. It also tracks the hours they’ve volunteered, and allows them to share stories and communicate with friends. Interior Savings and Prospera credit unions are both founding community partners with the organization, and announced this week they have purchased shares in the company, becoming equity partners.
Bus co-op for Saskatchewan?
Co-operatives are a familiar concept in Saskatchewan, and now a Regina-based group is in the early phases of trying to apply that model to an inter-community bus service. Dylan Morin first came up with the idea for the Saskway Co-operative Bus Service following the closure of a provincial bus service. Companies that have started servicing former bus routes primarily use 15 passenger vans, which Morin said can be an issue for those with disabilities. “People with physical disabilities and those who are elderly or in a wheelchair are unable to get into vans,” Morin said. Organizers say the idea is still in its infancy, and at this point they are looking for community partners. Their main goal right now is to devise fundraising efforts in order to buy or lease necessary equipment to make the co-op a reality.
Hornby Island Co-op to stop selling plastic water bottles
In a bid to think globally but act locally, the Hornby Island co-op grocery store will no longer be offering single-serve plastic water bottles. “Once our current stock is depleted it will not be replenished,” said Hornby Island Co-op manager Julia Waddington. Instead, the Hornby Island Co-op will offer one-litre metal drinking containers. The metal bottles will be free to refill using the Co-op’s in-store water system and will come with a $1 donation to the Hornby Island Water Stewardship Project. The grocery store’s new policy follows in the footsteps of Butchart Gardens in Victoria and the Vancouver Aquarium, which both banned such water bottles earlier this year. Marine scientists estimate that eight million metric tonnes of plastic wind up as pollution in the oceans each year, with single-serve plastic water bottles being one of the most common kinds of marine debris.
There’s a Co-op Café coming up later in the month, on Wednesday November 29. It will be held at the Lost and Found Café, at 33 West Hastings Street in Vancouver, from 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m.
The Co-op Radio Annual General Meeting will be held this coming Sunday, Nov. 26 at 2 pm. The meeting will be held at SFU Harbour Centre, Room 7000. The co-op needs 40 people for a quorum. And if you’re interested, Co-op Radio is still open to nominations for the Board of Directors. This is an exciting time to participate in the governance of the station. Board members receive training and are a crucial part of keeping the station focused on its mandate. If you are interested, please contact our new Executive Director, Bryan McKinnon.
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