A new centre for the SDGs at 123 Slater Street in Ottawa

An exciting expansion project will transform part of our office space into Canada’s first centre for the SDGs, a collaborative space for individuals, institutions, and ideas advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Canada.

Our commitment to the SDGs

In 2017, CFC, along with many community foundations in our network made an important pivot and commitment to the SDGs. At the time, it felt like many of the ambitious 17 goals were already at the heart of our work. And yet, many of us wanted to do more to align our efforts to a truly global agenda. Since then, we have progressively explored how we could deepen our contribution. In 2018, we co-hosted the inaugural North American Community Foundation Summit focused on the SDGs with our counterparts from Mexico and the U.S.. Later that year, we launched and have been a lead supporter of Alliance2030, a network for whom we now produce a monthly podcast called No Little Plans (all about Canada’s progress on the SDGs). We also helped represent civil society in the UN High Level Political Forum.

Many community foundations, in turn, are playing an instrumental leadership role to progress the SDGs in Canada. Several have integrated the SDGs into their grant-making efforts as well as programming such as Vital Signs, and more.

As a framework, the SDGs present a remarkable call to action. Yet we all know we cannot do this work alone. We also know much remains to be done still. This is why we are embarking on an exciting expansion project in our headquarters to create and host Canada’s first national centre for the SDGs.

To do big things there can be “no little plans”

The idea for the creation of the centre for SDGs was born of this recognition. To do big things, there can be no little plans. We co-steward our current home base at 123 Slater St. with Impact Hub Ottawa and share it with leading organizations including The Circle, MATCH International Women’s Fund and many others doing incredible work to make our communities and world a better place. As our respective conversations and engagement around the SDGs have deepened, we all felt a chance to do more together. To borrow Impact Hub’s mantra: we believe we can “do good better” by inviting others into the space, and creating the potential for new ideas to spark, new collaborations to emerge and the possibility for stronger collective action. What can happen when we align the power of Canada’s community philanthropy movement with actors from across sectors? This is why, alongside our partners, we are creating a collaborative, dedicated space where we can advance our work towards the SDGs together with other actors from across sectors. 

The new centre

Last spring, we undertook a renovation that has opened up and transformed our facility at 123 Slater Street in Ottawa. The centre for SDGs adds 6200 square feet to our existing office space. It is open, spacious (not to mention green!) and accessible for private meetings or group events that support action for the SDGs ( think #Act4SDGs). Steps away from Parliament Hill, we believe this space will be a valuable asset to a range of leading actors working on the SDGs. 

Come say hello! 

Reach out to us for a guided tour next time you are in the neighbourhood! If you are in the National Capital Region during Climate Week, join us starting at 8:30 a.m. on September 27th for the official launch and free open house event. Guests are welcome to join us as we head over to the Ottawa Climate Strike following the open house.

Watch the #AllIn2019 livestream

The 2019 Community Foundations Conference is less than one week away!

Starting on 6 June, watch the conference plenary sessions in real time by tuning into CFC’s Facebook page. If you haven’t yet, follow us on Facebook to receive the notification when we go live.

Find us on Facebook

Thursday,  June 6

12:30 – 2:30 p.m. PT (4:00 – 5:30 p.m. EDT):

Friday, June 7

8:30 – 9:30 a.m. PT (11:30 a.m. – 12:45 pm EDT) :

1:00 – 2:00 p.m. PT (3:45 – 5:00 p.m. EDT):

Saturday, June 8

10:45 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. PT (1:45 – 3:00 p.m. EDT) :

Learn more about the conference

Ahead of #AllIn2019: “Signs of the Lekwungen”

A modern harbour city like Victoria can seem far removed from the traditional First Nation uses once hosted in this territory, but through the project Signs of Lekwungen (pronounced Le-KWUNG-en), people can learn about the land, its original culture, and the spirit of its First Nations.

Signs of Lekwungen is a series of seven sculptures in culturally-significant places to the Lekwungen people.  Represented today by the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, these communities are part of the Coast Salish family and are descendants of the Lekwungen family groups.  Lekwungen is the original language of this land.

Artist Butch Dick with Spindle Whorl. Source: turtleisland.org

The city of Victoria in collaboration with the Songhees and Esquimalt First Nations created a series of outdoor art installations which mark an interpretive walkway along the Inner Harbour and surrounding areas that honours the art, history and culture of the Coast Salish people who have resided in the Victoria area since time immemorial.

The seven unique site markers are bronze castings of original cedar carvings, with the original wooden sculptures on display at City Hall.  Conceptualized and carved by Coast Salish artist, Butch Dick, the bronze markers depict spindle whorls that were traditionally used by Coast Salish women to spin wool.

Butch Dick is a master carver trained in fine art and graphic design. He has taught First Nations Art and Culture in School District 61 for more than 20 years and is currently an Assistant Professor at the University of Victoria, teaching an Indigenous Learning course.

“I remember my grandma using a spindle whorl.  She didn’t speak much English, and I didn’t speak much Coast Salish, but I understood that the spindle whorl is the foundation of any family – it can weave a tapestry of information.”

Butch Dick

Visit the City of Victoria website to download a PDF brochure  which tells a more complete story of the art installation, as well as providing a handy map.  For great photos, view this fine set on flickr.com by user “ngawangchodron”.

This project is a welcome addition to urban Victoria, reminding us visually and thematically of the spiritual landscape which still is woven into the modern world.

Tourists and residents alike thirst for information about the cultural history of the urban environment.  It would be great to see projects which work with First Nations to bring history out into the streets, thereby making strong yet beautiful statements about the abiding cultural landscape of a city.


Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, dog

This article is part of a series produced for #AllIn2019 by our partners at the Victoria Native Friendship Centre. The author is Kerri Amsing a recent graduate from Royal Roads University who holds a degree in Justice Studies. Kerri’s passion to travel led her to explore the west coast of British Columbia. Falling in love with the Island, she moved from her home town in Alberta with her German Shepherd and has been grateful to spend the last two years on the territory of the Lekwungen speaking Peoples. Kerri is the newest addition to the Victoria Native Friendship Centre’s team and was a vital player in the research and development of these articles for CFC.


Ahead of #AllIn2019: A history of the area around Victoria

Vancouver Island is home to 53 First Nations which equates to almost 20% of provincial First Nations and about 6% of the national total.  Among these Nations, there are three main language groups: Coast Salish, Nuu-chah-nulth and Kwakwaka’wakw.

The Capital Regional District (CRD) is a complex region that spans the traditional territories of over 20 First Nations, of which 11 have Reserve lands and 9 of those are populated (see map). Populated reserves include the Coast Salish Nations of Esquimalt, Songhees, Pauquachin, Tseycum, Tsawout, Tsartlip, Scia’new, and T’souke, and one Nuu-chah-Nulth First Nations band Pacheedaht.

Victoria the city is western Canada’s second oldest city, incorporated on August 2, 1862. However, since time immemorial the territory has been home of the Lekwungen People, a subset of the Coast Salish who are also known today as the Esquimalt and Songhees Nations. Lekwungen is the original language of Victoria, and the traditional culture that has been here for thousands of years; a culture based on careful land management including controlled burnings and food cultivation.


Royal Geographic Society. A view of the Songhees village as seen from Fort Victoria, 1851. Simon Fraser University. [Sketch by Linton Palmer]. Retrieved March 3, 2019 from https://www.sfu.ca/brc/virtual_village/coast_salish/Songhees.html

First Nations peoples have called Victoria’s inner harbour their home for thousands of years. With its temperate climate, natural harbours and rich resources, Victoria thrived as a trading centre for a diversity of First Peoples, weaving a complex history of land use for the Lekwungen territory. Throughout these centuries, the First Nations peoples treasured the harbours naturally calm waters and enjoyed the abundance of edible berries, crab-apples, and camas roots. They honoured the spirit of the land that provided food, shelter, clothing, and transportation, and lived in balanced harmony with the resources despite a large population.  The Esquimalt and Songhees peoples called the area Lewammen or “the land of the Winds” due to winter windstorms.

In 1778, Captain James Cook is the first known European to set foot on what is now British Columbia, long after eastern Canada had seen exploration and even settlement.  Gradual interest had grown in the territory west of the mountains as fur trade companies pushed towards the Pacific Coast. Trading is what compelled the Hudson’s Bay Company to select what is now Victoria harbour as the chosen site for their Pacific Northwest base, building the trading post and fort at the location the Lekwungen People called “camosack” meaning “rush of water”.  Victoria became the gateway for trade with the First Nations as there was a high demand in Europe for the valuable natural resources such as fur, salmon, and trees.

The ongoing development of the capital city led to profound disruption of the traditional economy and livelihood of the First Nations.  In 1906, a causeway was built across the mouth of Whosaykum or “muddy place”, also known as James Bay, a place where First Nations harvested crabs.  Once blocked, the “muddy place” was filled in, eliminating a valuable food source for the First Nations. Two years later the Empress Hotel sank its foundations deep into the buried Whosaykum and the hotel remains open on that site to this day.


Vancouver Archives. (Jul 01, 2017).  The BC Legislature as seen from across the Inner Harbour in 1901. Daily Hive. [image]. Retrieved March 3, 2019 from https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/canada-150-vancouver-island-then-and-now-on-this-spot-photos

Also, around this time disruptive technologies such as muskets and alcohol were introduced into the lives of the local Nations, dislodging many from traditional pursuits of economy and inevitably making them dependant on the Fort Victoria Indian Store, and so many of the Songhees people lived directly beside Fort.  Fear of fire from growing population led the HBC to require the Songhees to move across the harbour to today’s Songhees Point, displacing them from their traditional village site and then ultimately moving them to their current reserve.

But despite these struggles, First Nations endured and the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations are now experiencing a flourish of revitalization of traditional culture, language and community.

Photo courtesy of the Victoria Native Friendship Centre


Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, dog

This article is part of a series produced for #AllIn2019 by our partners at the Victoria Native Friendship Centre. The author is Kerri Amsing a recent graduate from Royal Roads University who holds a degree in Justice Studies. Kerri’s passion to travel led her to explore the west coast of British Columbia. Falling in love with the Island, she moved from her home town in Alberta with her German Shepherd and has been grateful to spend the last two years on the territory of the Lekwungen speaking Peoples. Kerri is the newest addition to the Victoria Native Friendship Centre’s team and was a vital player in the research and development of these articles for CFC.

An Extraordinary Food Rescue Program in Victoria

In 2013 the Victoria Foundation and CFC began a dialogue on food security that has resulted in what is now one of the most ambitious and successful food rescue programs in the country, feeding over 35,000 people a month and diverting over 1.2 million pounds of fresh produce a year from landfill to hungry homes. Not only that, but recently, Victoria Foundation announced a $3 million grant from the Province of BC and the establishing of a new fund, the Food Security – Provincial Initiatives Fund, for food security initiatives across the province of BC. This secures the Greater Victoria Food Rescue program long-term and provides anchor food security infrastructure for the region. It also represents the culmination of years of work and roughly $1.8 million of community investment over the past 5 years by Victoria Foundation.


How did it all happen?

The first step was a series of consultations in 2013 with local partners to establish a Food Security Roadmap for the Victoria region. This roadmap identified key gaps in the regional food system, including food infrastructure as well as opportunities to align the efforts of local food-oriented non-profits to achieve systemic regional shifts in reducing hunger and improving food security outcomes.

Building on this foundational work, two regional food networks were established.

The FoodShare Network focuses on food access and security, working with food banks, meals programs, and social service and community organizations that – for example – manage community kitchens or food delivery programs for young moms. Currently this network includes 77 agencies, nonprofits, charities, First Nations, school districts, funders and different levels of government. Meanwhile, the GoodFood Network focuses on the local food economy, working to increase the amount of produce grown in the region, as well as on food literacy. These two networks work together to address a broad range of food security issues in a coordinated and strategic way.

In 2017, the foundation joined forces with the Victoria region’s 13 different local Rotary Clubs, and a local food retailer, Thrifty Foods, as well as several local non-profits who were already doing small-scale food rescue programs, to launch a coordinated regional food rescue program. In its first year, having rented a 20,000 square foot warehouse in Esquimalt, BC, known as the Food Security Distribution Centre, the program expanded to include 56 participating agencies and now rescues food from 17 regional retailers.


The underlying principle of food rescue is that there is an enormous amount of high quality produce moving through major grocery stores that is still fresh and that could be sold, but that must be disposed of because new shipments come in at regular intervals. In the past this produce was sent to landfill sites, but when the Greater Victoria regional government imposed tipping fees for organic food waste, a financial incentive was created that encouraged retailers to explore other solutions.

Today, participating agencies collect produce that in the past would have gone to landfills and bring it to the Food Security Distribution Centre where it is redistributed to 35,000 citizens monthly who would otherwise go hungry.

This work results in positive environmental impacts from the decrease in carbon emissions from waste. It also generates positive health outcomes due to the availability of fresh produce as opposed to at-risk populations relying on food banks that typically offer non-perishable canned goods, including an excessive amount of refined sugars.

Additionally, a kitchen was added to the Centre in 2018, where food that is bruised or less appealing is now turned into soups, stews and stocks. Not only that, but training programs for marginalized populations provide trainees to the kitchen where they can develop professional food skills and become more employable.

The BC government’s recently announced Food Security program will provide $2 million to the Mustard Seed, a local nonprofit, to purchase the Food Security Distribution Centre, home to the main operations of the Greater Victoria Food Rescue, ensuring that this work continues to develop, supporting ever greater numbers of citizens and promoting regional food security in many different ways.

Today, The Greater Victoria Food Rescue program stands as a model for communities across Canada to learn from and emulate.

Participants at #AllIn2019 have the opportunity to learn more about the program during the pre-conference site visits.

Register for the site visit

Courage and bravery: How can philanthropy step up for the SDGs?

In September 2018, a conversation took place in New York focused on the idea of unlocking philanthropy to address and support the 2030 Agenda that is laid out by the SDGs. As a community foundation network, much of the work of Community Foundations of Canada (CFC) and that of community foundations connects either directly or indirectly to the SDGs.

While the dialogue weighed different ideas and perspectives of why philanthropy is, and can be, an important contributor to and catalyst of the 2030 Agenda, the most memorable moment from my perspective was about values rather than tactics. Yes, philanthropy has various assets it can utilize to address the domestic and international goals and indicators. It can do so through its mechanisms of grants, thought leadership, convening, etc. But, what is the relationship between the values of the SDGs and the values of philanthropy. If these are not aligned, can the full opportunity of philanthropy truly be unlocked for the SDGs?

Two specific themes, or values, were highlighted during this discussion that continue to drive my thoughts and reflections.

Risk.

There was a moment in which one panelist commented: ‘Philanthropy is a sector that is well positioned to take risks – but is also one of the most risk averse sectors.’

Could infusing courage and bravery into philanthropy see more movement towards the SDGs? While some might argue there is already a healthy dose of courage in philanthropy, I’m inclined to agree with the panelist: we need more of it.

This can be done in multiple ways. In Canada, there is a growing movement to do more good with the assets held by foundations. Specifically, to leverage the opportunity of impact investing. Last year, CFC participated in a partnership which launched an Impact Investing guidebook to encourage this practice. Around the world, there is a movement to #ShiftThePower. At its core is the idea of shifting power to local communities — to both organizations and actors. It takes the wisdom and ideas of those in community as the key input and rejects (kindly) the traditional top-down approach that has been part of philanthropy’s long history.

Honesty.

Another value that shone brightly in this conversation was that of honesty. More specifically, honesty with ourselves. A challenge was issued to ensure that philanthropic organizations (and let’s be clear, the public and private sectors too) are being honest about how they are intentionally addressing the SDGs. The positioning of ‘intentionally addressing’ is a key part of the challenge.

Distilled down, it was suggested that we not simply repackage what is already being done and claim this as the organization’s contribution towards the SDGs.

Certainly historical and current actions matter; but, if all existing actions were enough, we wouldn’t be facing the real challenge of the SDGs and the plethora of indicators beneath each goal.

So yes, keep doing the good work you are doing, but also, do more — with intention.

The SDG framework is underpinned by the phrase: Leaving no one behind. This speaks to the values but also the challenge. We have tremendous capacity to move social and financial capital, knowledge, and resources. Imagine what is possible when we turn our full attention and intention, with honesty and courage, towards the SDGs.

This post was initially published on the WINGS blog, October 30, 2018.

Meet the 6 leaders taking part in the inaugural Future Forward cohort

We are delighted to announce the six emerging leaders from community foundations across Canada who have been selected to participate in the 2019 program. They will have the opportunity to participate in activities being held in Canada, Russia and Germany over the coming eight months. They will dive deep into a range of themes including diversity, equity and inclusion, youth in philanthropy, business models in community philanthropy and more. Follow their learning journey starting in summer 2019!

Learn more about the initiative

Shifting power to youth: “What’s your bold idea?”

Globalization. Technological innovations. Climate change. An aging population. Urbanization. Demographic shifts. Everywhere we look, our communities and our country are rapidly changing, and the gap between the experiences of rural and urban communities is growing.

I’ve had the opportunity to speak about some of these changes with young people in communities across Canada. Many are courageously stepping forward as leaders, and are sharing their vision for the future of their communities.

Their own futures are also on their minds, as they’ve reflected on the rapidly changing ‘world of work’, one that is being reshaped by technology, automation, the emergence of exciting new sectors and the disappearance of entire fields. The changes that they’ve described are at a scale that I didn’t see when leaving school, even just five years ago.

Locally, community foundations have reported on these trends in Vital Signs reports and they have supported young leaders through grants and scholarships. At the national level, at Community Foundations of Canada, we highlighted the “seismic shifts” facing younger generations through the 2012 National Vital Signs report, #GenerationFlux, and we mobilized private, public and philanthropic contributions to the Youth Catalyst Fund based on its findings. I had the privilege of supporting the Community Fund for Canada’s 150th and witnessed community foundations’ commitment to young people as the Fund granted over $5M to more than 700 youth-led initiatives.

As I work with the RBC Foundation, CFC and a vast network of community foundations across Canada, I am excited to build on this commitment and shift power into the hands of young leaders in small and mid-sized communities. The RBC Future Launch Community Challenge asks youth and partner organizations to rally around one central question — What is your boldest idea to respond to an urgent local need — and I’m looking forward to seeing the ambitious and creative responses.

With young leaders stepping forward from Ucluelet, BC to Gander, NL, and from Tecumseh, ON to Yellowknife YK and even further North — what are shared experiences, and what is uniquely local?

I’m also looking forward to watching young leaders flourish. By participating in the Challenge, youth will both affect positive change, and will also have opportunities to gain skills, experiences, and relationships — which will all help prepare them for a bright future, in their communities and at work. At CFC, we are excited to learn from this experience.

What happens when we intentionally shift power, and put decision-making in the hands of young leaders? What is possible when partners from across sectors come together around a shared commitment to youth? What we will learn — and how can we use those learnings to transform our communities and our country?

This journey is only just beginning: participating community foundations are receiving applications between May 22 and September 18, 2019. We look forward to hearing ideas from coast to coast to coast, and to witnessing communities transform as young leaders bring them to life. Follow along and learn with us at #RBCFLChallenge.

So what’s your bold idea?

Learn more about the challenge

Cities of the future

The following article was originally published in the Globe and Mail, May 8, 2019.

Given a remarkable urban footprint that already exists in a number of Canadian cities along with the nation’s recent historical transition from being a largely rural to a more urbanized nation, Canada is uniquely positioned to become a world model for advancing urban sustainability.

“We already have some of the most livable and admired cities in the world, including Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal, with many benefiting from spectacular natural settings, including Halifax, St. John’s and Victoria,” says Ian Bird, president of Community Foundations of Canada (CFC), a national network for 191 community foundations across Canada and one of the founding partners of Future Cities Canada, a platform for spearheading innovation in city building.

According to Mr. Bird, Canada’s largest cities have managed to avoid many of the pressures bedevilling other megacities. However, this does not mean it can be complacent about future development. “Left untended, economic forces tend to be extractive and exclusive, generating greater inequality and making cities less affordable and livable over time,” he explains. The solution is to harness forces that are prepared to work towards the creation of “really smart city building,” forces that promote inclusivity and affordability, seek to work in harmony with and respect natural environments, and create spaces that allow residents to meet and mingle with each other in public, thereby retaining an appropriate human scale.

“You can achieve this by bringing together various sectors, including public, private, political, Indigenous, community based and academic, and having them work together in envisioning and building the kinds of cities Canadians need and want, now and into the future,” he says. Collaboration allows residents at all levels to be part of the process for change, making it easier for them to buy into it and have confidence in the ability of the cities they are creating to meet their aspirations and needs.

Utilizing the co-operative model has also proven to be a benefit for all stakeholders rather than a select few. “Developers come to understand that when they integrate into the community and create the kind of harmonization residents are looking for, they typically unlock more value for their business interests,” says Mr. Bird. Additionally, the public sector comes to understand that when it assists in establishing a “civic commons” that invites residents to be active creators rather than passive spectators, it benefits from enhanced confidence and respect for its role.

Mr. Bird says that although frustrations remain, Canadians are ready for change in the way they move forward with urban development. “It’s no longer about elites imposing their views, but about unlocking democratic forces on the way to creating a shared vision,” he says. “And I’m confident that, in the long run, residents are going to win. They always do.”

“It’s no longer about elites imposing their views, but about unlocking democratic forces on the way to creating a shared vision.”

Ian Bird

Social isolation and a lack of affordable housing are just two of the complex challenges faced by many residents in cities across Canada.

Food Systems

Volunteers collect – and redistribute – 60,000 pounds of unwanted backyard fruit each year to advance the mandate of the Victoria-based LifeCycles Project Society. The group works with 500 volunteers and thousands of program participants a year to grow, harvest and share local food with diverse people in many ways. At the core of LifeCycles’ efforts is the belief that food systems have to support thriving, diverse communities and a healthy planet. With that aim, the organization spearheads innovative schoolyard micro-farms and educational programs, operates a seed library in the downtown public library, maintains a large community orchard, co-ordinates community food and garden projects across the city and runs a unique social enterprise selling products and services.

Reconciliation

Indigenous peoples have a long history of managing their land and resource base according to their teachings and traditional ecological knowledge. Drawing on this tradition, Musqueam First Nation created an award-winning comprehensive community plan in 2013, which was recognized by UN Habitat as “best practice” plan for sustainable community development. A program partnership between UBC’s School of Community and Regional Planning and Musqueam First Nation, on whose traditional unceded lands the university’s Vancouver campus is located, equips a new generation of community planners with the necessary theory, skills, knowledge and capacity to support Indigenous communities in achieving their own aspirations for land stewardship, cultural revitalization, strong governance, health and well-being.

Crime Prevention

The principle that crime often stems from underlying social issues, including poverty, poor health and addiction, inspired a new approach to policing in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan. Former Police Chief Dale McPhee adapted ideas introduced in Scotland and brought together agencies such as mental health, social services, health, education, police, corrections and Indigenous leaders. Rather than only responding to police incidents as they occur, the Hub/COR model leverages the power of collective and preventative action, focusing on people at risk of committing or being victims of crime. As a result, meaningful partnerships have enabled all involved agencies to proactively address local issues, lessening their strain on resources and improving community wellness.

Co-Housing

As social isolation and housing unaffordability are increasing in cities worldwide, advocates are suggesting that the cohousing model can provide a part of the answer by creating inclusive communities, participating in the design and/or development, mitigating developer profit and marketing costs, as well as improving social and environmental sustainability. Wolf Willow Cohousing in Saskatoon, an example of a cohousing community, is a member of the Canadian Cohousing Network, which works to advance awareness about cohousing and links individuals and cohousing groups to share resources and make the process of creating a community easier. Once living there, shared lives and equipment can be much more economical.

Civic Engagement

People who do not vote in elections are often young, racialized, marginalized or a combination of the three. About eight million eligible Canadians did not cast a ballot in the last federal election. With two core programs, Democracy Talks and Vote PopUp, Ryerson University’s Democratic Engagement Exchange helps young people find their voices in Canada’s elections. Starting with the question about what matters to them, the exchange aims to highlight the importance as well as make it accessible. To date, Democracy Talks activities have been delivered by 175 organizations in 25 communities, and Vote PopUp has been adapted for use by Elections Canada.

Listen to Season 1 of No Little Plans

No Little Plans explores the status of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals in Canada. Each episode dives deep on one of the 17 goals, while also highlighting the ways they intersect.

If you’d like to learn more about the podcast, be a guest on an episode, or have ideas for future episodes, please get in touch by emailing communications@alliance2030.ca

Happy listening!

Episode 1: Leave no one behind (An overview of the SDGs)

What are the SDGs and why do they matter? Meet three experts — Joseph Wong, John McArthur, and Deborah Glaser — who are already pursuing the goals, and learn why the tremendous effort it will take to achieve them is worth it.

Episode 2: How to eradicate homelessness (SDG 1: No Poverty)

The reality of being homeless in Canada is complicated. Nearly a third of people experiencing life without shelter are women, almost one in five are young people, Indigenous populations are overrepresented — and more. Meet Erin Dej and Jesse Thistle, two experts with big ideas about how to fix this important problem.

Episode 3: Women’s rights are human rights (SDG 5 : Gender Equality) 

Gender equality in Canada is a slow-motion work in progress. How did we get so bad at addressing problems that affect more than half of us? And what must we do to improve the lives of girls who will be women in 2030?

Episode 4: Water World (SDG 14 : Life below Water) 

The health of our oceans and seas affects everything from human health to food security to global climate and international economics. The seas and oceans provide work to 3 billion people around the world—and they need help from all of us

No Little Plans is one of our contributions to Alliance 2030, a national network of organizations working to achieve the SDGs in Canada and abroad by the year 2030. You can join the Alliance today at www.alliance2030.ca/register.

No Little Plans is hosted by Vicky Mochama of Vocal Fry Studios, and created by Strategic Content Labs. You can subscribe to No Little Plans anywhere you get podcasts, including iTunes and Google Play. Visit alliance2030.ca to find episode notes and more ways you can listen.