A cartoon of folks waving to each other on the street, with one person walking dog.

Photo Credit: VanIsle.News Staff

Creating More Community In Our Communities

Small grants make a big difference on the NorthIsle!

New meet ups to know about + how you can host your own!

Small Towns are known for having more community than big cities.

But sometimes it can be hard to find the groups where you really fit.

Luckily, there are about to be a lot more get-togethers to join in Mount Waddington!

A new small neighbourhood grant program is supporting all kinds of initiatives that connect and engage neighbours in our community.

No matter how niche your idea is, they’re not turning anyone away.

When listening to a proposition, the volunteer committee will always start off talks with a “yes.”

“The point isn’t to weed projects out but to find ways to make as many projects happen as possible,” said Coordinator Kerri Reid to the North Island Eagle.

And so far, they’re definitely succeeding with that.

They’ve already funded a ton of meet-up-style projects, so we’ve put together a list of community events you’re gonna want to know about!

Wild Medicinal Food and Plants

We’re surrounded by the most amazing natural wilderness, but most of us don’t even know how to use it! Judy Cadrin is working to change that in Alert Bay through this workshop, which will bring people together to learn about local foraging for wild medicinal plants and food.

Hot Paws

Gloria Walkus, from Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw, will be bringing people together to give out a mix of purchased and handmade mitts and toques to local folks in need of warm clothing! The event will take place December 17th beside the Red Apple store at 11:30 a.m. They’ll be giving out warm soup as well with some help from Harvest Foods!

Mahjong Learning

Have you ever heard of or played Mahjong? This group is the perfect place to get started! The group, organized by Susan Mohler in Quatsino, will be a public gathering to socialize and connect with the community while learning how to play Mahjong, a traditional Chinese board game.

Community Gym

Gyms can be one of the most hyped-up and supportive environments out there! In Coal Harbour, Ann Hory will be setting up a big community gathering in the newly upgraded gym to show how it can be used as more than just a space for your daily workout.

Aging Process

If there’s one amazing thing about getting older, it’s that we’re all doing it! This Sointula sharing event will be a gathering for aging women, organized to create a sense of togetherness. Organized by Mary Louise Albert, the goal is simply to connect, share stories and wisdom about the aging process—and eat together!

Elk Drive Neighbourhood Potluck

A good old-fashioned get-together by Patricia Corbett-Labatt in Port Hardy. Neighbours will gather, Christmas lights will be lit, and food and drinks will be shared!

Blessing Box

Judith Fyles applied to make Port Hardy’s “Blessing Box” even better. The already established Blessing Box will be restocked and reopened, and will now also include some sanitary supplies, and other goodies.

Emergency Food Security

In the event of a catastrophe, the Island will run out of groceries in just a few days. This event is all about learning to store food traditionally to help keep your family fed no matter what. Organized by Stephanie Hunt in Quatsino First Nation, workshops will teach Elders to make and prepare meals in jars and to teach about food security.

Community Bookstore

For all the bookworms out there! There’s a new completely free lending library being organized by Heather McLean in Port Alice.

Ahola Park Refresh

Donna Munroe applied for some new play equipment for this beautiful park in Sointula. There will be an opening barbeque to celebrate the new setup for all the neighbourhood’s kids!

Financial Literacy for Kids

This event will bring parents and kids together to learn! It’s being organized by Nicola Layton in Port McNeill. Classes for preschool-aged kids and their parents will be focused on interactive books and learning activities. It’s a great chance to connect with other families!

Hyde Creek Parent and Tot Time

On a similar idea as above, Olivia Shaw has set up 10 family-style meet-ups in Hyde Creek at the local hall, as a social event for parents with young children.

Power and Peace

Yoga definitely feels amazing and is a great way to meet people, but classes can get expensive! This free empowerment yoga and meditation class organized by Laura Dean in Port Hardy strikes the perfect balance.

Hyde Creek Clean Up

A big part of bonding within communities is all about taking care of it together. This event, organized by Katie Adlington, will bring people together to clean up ditches, roadsides, and community trails!

And there will be a whole lot more to come!

Grants from $50 to $500 are available to support individuals and small volunteer-based neighbourhood community groups.

They especially focus on projects that connect and engage neighbours, share skills and knowledge, generate diversity, and strengthen belonging and community responsibility.

If you have an idea that could help foster these ideals in your Mount Waddington Community, head here to learn more.