Pre-conference: Site visits

NOTE: All site visits are now sold out. Thank you for your interest.

As part of the pre-conference program during the morning of June 6, join one of the site visits organized by our hosts at the Victoria Foundation. These are a unique opportunity to learn about initiatives making Victoria a better place to live, work and play. There is a modest fee of $15 per site visit, which will go towards the organization hosting us ($16.95 with Eventbrite fees included). The visit includes transportation, if needed, which will pick you up from the conference venue and bring you back there in time for the official kick off at 11 a.m. Spots are limited so we invite you to reserve yours early!  Requests for refunds will be considered on a case-by-case basis until April 15th.

Please note we’ll soon be adding a few additional site visits to tourist destinations in and around the Victoria area if you prefer this option. Stay tuned!

Food Sovereignty and Indigenous Resurgence PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱

June 6, 2019
7:30 – 11:00 a.m.
Maximum 30 participants
Not wheelchair accessible

PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ provides Indigenous made curriculum and workshops with community members, empowering youth by valuing traditional education, teachings, foods and medicines. PEPÁḴEṈ HÁUTW̱ wants to increase capacity building in the SENĆOŦEN language by teaching students pronunciation of native plants, foods and medicines during workshops and increasing SENĆOŦEN in lesson plans. Ensuring students learn proper protocols for planting, care taking, restoring, and harvesting from living plants is an important skill learned via workshops. Students will help revitalize W̱SÁNEĆ culture around food, medicines and native agriculture which will ensure students know how to identify, harvest and eat traditional foods.

Food Security Distribution Centre

June 6, 2019
7:45 – 10:30 a.m.
Maximum 40 participants

The Food Security Distribution Centre is a 19,700 square foot facility that houses several food-based programs serving the region, including food access and food literacy programs. Most notably, the Centre houses the Food Rescue Project that collects and re-distributes 1.2 million lbs. of fresh food (2,000 kg daily!) to 35,000 food insecure people in the region, through 53 participating agencies acting as distribution sites.  Since launching in March 2017, the Food Rescue Project has expanded the reach of the food access system in Greater Victoria, reduced hunger in the community and facilitated connections between low-income communities and neighbourhood-based programs.

Opioid Crisis: Safe Consumption Services & AVI Health and Community Services

June 6, 2019
8 – 10:30 a.m.
Maximum 70 participants

Lookout Housing and Health Society’s harm reduction practices help prevent overdose deaths while engaging those who are vulnerable in other health care services, including mental health treatment and withdrawal management. In response to the opioid crisis, Lookout has increased access to harm reduction supplies and education, introduced peer-led substance use programs, and trained all staff in Naloxone reversals. Lookout’s harm reduction philosophy is fully integrated in every aspect of its continuum of services and builds on the desire to meet guests where they are at.

AVI Health and Community Services aims to promote health, dignity and well-being for all people affected by HIV, HCV and substance use by delivering sex positive and harm reduction based education and programming. Since 1988, it has provided comprehensive harm reduction services (HRS) in Victoria. Services are low barrier and accessible to all people using substances and include supply distribution, counselling, supervised injection, overdose prevention education & response, education for safer drug use, and referrals to other health and social services. HRS also provides a drop-in space: a place where people can gather, connect, relax, receive care and support, and become involved in their community. As part of healthcare services, staff in these locations monitor people who are at risk of overdose and provide rapid intervention if necessary, prevention and support services.

Victoria Native Friendship Centre: Siem Lelum Housing Model

June 6, 2019
8:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Maximum 25 participants

Siem Lelum (Respected House) provides 40-45 units of safe and affordable residential housing for Indigenous single young adults (19-25) who are working and/or in school, and young families and grandparents raising grandchildren, who are, or are at-risk of becoming, homeless and who will benefit from living in a supportive environment where they can learn parenting skills and other life skills necessary for self-sufficiency. Creating these units contributed to the goal of the CRD to eliminate homelessness in the region, which is within the traditional lands of the Coast Salish People.

The primary purpose of this project is to create a safe, affordable, supported and holistic “Urban Village” where lifelong skills and a healthy lifestyle are modelled, and the necessary resources are provided to encourage healthy choices. It provides opportunities for its residents and surrounding community to forge relationships and bonds with their peers, which is particularly important given that many Indigenous people feel isolated in urban centres. Siem Lelum thus aims to empower Indigenous people to move themselves forward and strengthen their own capacity to heal, to better themselves and improve their daily lives. Empowering Indigenous people and helping them to regain health and pride of belonging will go a long way towards bridging the social gaps that exists between the Indigenous community and non-Indigenous community.

Guided walk in Metchosin: Rural sustainability & valued ecosystem services

June 6, 2019
7:45 – 11 a.m.
Transportation: Bus (45 min.)
Maximum 35 participants
Not wheelchair accessible

Metchosin is a thriving rural community located on the edge of B.C.’s capital city. The Metchosin Foundation is a non-profit society whose motto is: Healthy Lands, Healthy Waters and a Healthy, Caring Community. Join this guided 3 km walk to experience a landscape that is an outdoor classroom for kids and adults alike and to learn about a community that values volunteerism, reconciliation and responsible stewardship of our sustaining natural environment Our Site Visit Tour Leader will join participants at 7:45 on the bus, to provide a general orientation. At the Site Visit locale, Metchosin Foundation members will engage you in exploring our big backyard.