Leading For Change lecture series

Sponsored by UBC Continuing Education and Hollyhock with support from Vancity, this lecture series includes some upcoming lectures of particular interest to our sector. For full information and to register, go to: Leading For Change lecture series.

Lauren Bacon & Jason Mogus
Are You Web Ready? Key Learnings in Working Online for Change.
Nov 9, 2010
The internet is a powerful network that’s creating a fundamental shift in the way organizations work, connect, engage and effect change. What qualities and skills does your organization need to make a bigger impact within this landscape? How can you achieve your mission by catalyzing the necessary shift towards openness, collaboration and innovation? Learn the frontline and behind-the-scenes strategies of highly successful organizations and people-powered campaigns. This is an open forum where you will be exposed to the newest models and strategies for world-changing groups. Get ‘web ready’ with two veteran leaders.
Lauren Bacon is a partner at Raised Eyebrow Web Studio. Lauren’s work can be seen amongst some of the premier websites in the non-profit, government, and progressive business communities. www.raisedeyebrow.comJason Mogus is the CEO of Communicopia, a digital agency that helps local and global social change organizations become more open, collaborative, and citizen-driven by deeply embracing the web.  www.communicopia.com
Ross McMillan
Reinventing Social Action: Is Collaborating with Opponents Selling Out or Smart Strategy?  
Nov 23, 2010
There are new demanding problems that call into question traditional approaches to social action. Significant strife has arisen in recent years within the BC activist communities over collaboration with other parties such as industry, First Nations and governments. Is collaboration needed to solve intractable social and environmental problems? Should it be an essential part of campaigning? Join a discussion around the forms and applications of collaboration and consider what a new understanding of collaboration could mean for a reinvented activism.
Ross McMillan is the President and CEO of Tides Canada. Ross was a principal architect of the Great Bear Rainforest project – one of the most significant conservation programs in North American history. Ross has extensive experience managing organizations and coalitions to achieve success in complex circumstances. www.tidescanada.org

Friday October 29, 2010: Join In!

You are Invited: 
Friday, October 29, 1 pm to 3:30 pm at the North Shore Community Resources Community Room
Join us for an afternoon of input and discussion in preparation for the 3rd annual Counterparts Gathering (see The Counterparts Are Coming...). Gail Joyce and Tim Beachy, Co-Chairs of VOCBC’s Steering Committee, want your input to take forward to inform the Counterparts discussion as broadly and deeply as possible from your point of view about the situation, the concerns, and the issues of the community benefit sector in this province.
You have a chance to provide valuable input to those who will represent us at this year’s Gathering. Please join us for an informal facilitated dialogue on the Counterparts theme issues: 

  • Friday October 29, 2010
  • 1 pm until 3:30 pm
  • Rm. #203, Capilano Mall, 935 Marine Drive, North Vancouver
  • Hosted by North Shore Community Resources

Email counterparts@vocbc.org for more information, to add your input in writing or to register to attend the dialogue.

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The Counterparts are coming…

…And why should you care?

In November 2010, the Counterparts Gathering will be held in BC for the first time. VOCBC, together with BC’s Government Non-Profit Initiative (GNPI) is pleased to have the opportunity to host the third annual Gathering.
The Counterparts Gathering is a face-to-face meeting of members of the Canadian Federation of Voluntary Sector Networks (CFVSN) and their provincial and territorial government counterparts. The Gathering was initiated by the CFVSN, with the support of the Centre for Voluntary Sector Research and Development at Carleton University.
Continue reading “The Counterparts are coming…”

All the Answers, or the Right Questions?

“Clear out the experts.. The expert doesn’t know the right questions, so he rejects the right answer. Hence the need for a playful and spontaneous approach to real problems.”

– Marshall McLuhan, Take Today: The executive as dropout (1972).

The Power of How

This presentation from the United Nations Development Program could be applied to our own neighbourhoods, communities and organizations as it does to global east-west/north-south development projects. Have a look and tell us what you think:


A Society of One?

The BC Society Act is badly in need of revision, to bring it into the current century, and this is being done through consultation and recommendations from stakeholders.
I think one of the more ludicrous proposals I’ve seen among the suggested changes is – to allow the incorporation of a  Society of only one member.
So if this were to happen, is it a good thing, a bad thing, or…. :
How does a society of “one member” further “public purposes”?
Given that an excess of societies already litter the landscape, won’t we simply have more societies, more confusion and less community building?
Alternative wording …
We need to modernize our not-for-profit incorporation procedures and framework. Why don’t we be more democratic and more “business-like” at the same time, and bring community-building down to its essence – – individuals acting alone! that is, Societies incorporated with just one member?
What do you think?

Triggering themes

Some of the events and trends we share across a broad spectrum of organizational mandates and styles have really challenged us. Here are a few of them:

  1. increased uncertainty and reduced support – financial and structural – from government and private sector. Do we become victims of undeserved neglect, or find a way to be leaders in innovative thinking?
  2. looking forward, an expectation of dramatically reduced funding from the usual sources. Are there other ways to fund our work? What is holding us back?
  3. an aging leadership remains in place because of economic uncertainty, but may be motivated by duty rather than inspiration – how do we engage and re-ignite the passion of our elders, peers and next generation leadership? How do we ensure that our own history of community-building serves the future?
  4. perplexed by a continuing lack of recognition of the sector at a peer level, after years of work to create visibility and quantify impact, what could we do differently? How shall we get outside the box of our own making?
  5. counterproductive niche-seeking and protectionism vs. collaboration and open sourcing – survival in a time of chaos
  6. a widening intergenerational gap, exacerbated by differences in adoption of new technologies. How can we get past the differences to link the common ground between these cultures?

Are these questions you have been asking yourself? your board? your staff?

The Power of Ideas

Sharing provocative ideas, asking irresistable questions, offering a space for wise dialogue, demonstrating curiosity and engendering hope.