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Association of Neighbourhood Houses of British Columbia

West End Community Food Centre

The Community Food Centre we envision in Vancouver's West End takes a 3-pronged approach to addressing inequities in our food system, in a way that is rooted in the right to food. We will work with existing emergency food resources in our community to transition to providing people who access them with healthy, fresh food in a dignified environment. We aim to develop community capacity, skills and engagement for producing and preparing food through a comprehensive suite of skill-building and educational programs offered at various locations in our community, and we aim to hire, develop, train and support a group of peer advocates to operate in our community to challenge the systemic issues which create and entrench poverty. While each of these approaches has the potential to drive change on one scale or another, a community's level of food security is generally understood to embody each of the three prongs working in synergy. By providing individuals with multiple points of access to varying levels and scales of support and advocacy, we create the necessary conditions for a nimble response to the specific issues and concerns of our community. The West End Community Food Centre will be based on a model in which programs and initiatives are animated in various locations throughout our community (this may change down the road). Starting with programs in satellite sites throughout a community is also the model of growth for most of Vancouver's Neighbourhood Houses.

Clements Centre

Lunch on Clements

Our goal is to create a social enterprise from a provincially funded program for adults with developmental disabilities. The Lunch on Clements (LOC) program has been operating for over 20 years. It features a large commercial kitchen and a licensed cafeteria/restaurant. 15 people attend every day from 9-3. They participate in community activities and cook in the kitchen. The program produces meat pies, sausage rolls, cookies, quiches, Nanaimo bars and other squares for retail sale and offers a limited catering menu. Currently participation in the program is voluntary. It is considered a training kitchen. The participants receive no financial compensation. In the kitchen they learn cooking skills and other general life skills (e.g. budgeting, grocery shopping, social skills). They also participate in community activities as the cooking only takes up a portion of each day. Sales profits go back into the program and help fund activities and community outings. On an annual basis the program has gross sales of approximately $40,000. This is with no marketing or sales promotion or branded packaging. Our plan is to re-create the program as a social enterprise that employs adults with developmental disabilities. We will conduct a marketing campaign, re-brand the business, and create a separate business entity (co-op). We will start paying minimum wage to everyone who works for the co-op. A comprehensive business plan and third party feasibility study have been completed.

Courthouse Libraries BC BC Family Justice Innovation Lab

British Columbia Family Justice Innovation Lab

BC’s family justice system has traditionally focused on judicial decision-making and an adversarial approach to disputes. Too often it negatively affects the physical and mental health of adults and children. Despite myriads of reports, the system has failed to change itself sufficiently to address this reality. We are seeking funding for the BC Family Justice Innovation Lab, initiated by a group of reform-minded justice system leaders in 2014. Its goal is to improve the well-being of BC children and families experiencing separation and divorce. Its core approach is experimental (developing and evaluating scalable prototypes), systemic (defining the system from the perspective of families) and participatory (engaging cross-sector organizations and system users). The first three initiatives under the Lab's umbrella focus on providing families with viable and affordable collaborative approaches to resolution of their problems outside of court: 1. Northern Navigator project (collaboration of a local community social service organization, mediators and the judiciary) assesses the needs of family litigants and refer them to mediation before court 2. Collaborative Practice Pro Bono project provides free interdisciplinary collaborative practice services to families 3. Family Mediation Sliding Scale project offers affordable mediation services. The Lab will generate systemic learning through developmental evaluation and nurture scaleable prototypes.

Neworld Theatre Society

King Arthur and His Knights

King Arthur and His Knights is a three-year collaborative partnership with the Down Syndrome Research Foundation (DSRF) in Burnaby. It has four components: 1) The creation/production of a full-length show co-written by Niall McNeil, an artist with Down Syndrome (DS), and featuring an equally integrated cast (4 actors with DS, 5 without). It will be presented at two of Canada’s best-known arts festivals, Luminato in Toronto and the PuSh Festival in Vancouver (tbc); 2) Three years of workshops and creative development at the Down Syndrome Research foundation, working with a broad range of the DSRF’s clientele; 3) A pilot residency for an artist with Down Syndrome at Neworld; 4) Outreach/methodology-sharing with local disability arts organizations, Kickstart & Stagedoor/PosAbilities This collaboration is built on the success of a pilot, our 2011 PuSh Festival co-production, Peter Panties, which DSRF Executive Director Dawn McKenna described as, “the most profound example of creative inclusion I have ever experienced.” This show is commissioned by the Luminato Festival in Toronto (Canada's largest performing arts festival), with support from the National Arts Centre and the Banff Playwrights Colony. We believe the scale of this experiment with creative inclusion and collaboration between people of differing abilities offers enormous opportunities for our partners, our own learning, and tangible potential impact on the performance sector across the country.