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December 2015

Issue No. 36| January 12th, 2016

In this Issue:

  • 2015 Was A Good Year, May 2016 Be Even Better.
  • Financial Review for Smaller Non-profit Organizations
  • New List of Skill Building Opportunities for Local Volunteers
  • Sooke Region Volunteer Recognition
  • Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grants: Round Three
  • The Courage to Come Back Awards
  • Program matching Syrian relief donations extended to Feb 29
  • High school volunteering: As some struggle to secure hours, others raise bar
  • Preparing Your Short-Term Volunteer Roles
  • Keeping Former Volunteers as Our Long-term Friends
  • 5 Ways to Find the Right Board Members for Your Nonprofit
  • Updated Police Check and Criminal Record Check Resource
  • Civic Info BC Searchable Grants Database
  • National Volunteer Week 2016 - April 10th - 16th
  • Volunteers Are The Roots of Strong Communities
  • Job Opportunities
  • Submissions


2015 Was A Good Year, May 2016 Be Even Better.

We've come a long way in the less than 2 years the volunteer centre has been open.  Membership is up, and new residents are coming in for an interview and finding out more about their new community,   We are also seeing increased numbers of youth reaching out to find rewarding volunteer opportunities both in terms of meeting their graduation requirements, and to give back to the place they call home.  We've had young, stay-at-home mom, and newly retired long term residents come in to find out what the opportunities are to give to their community.  And people say no one is volunteering these days.  Well, that's not true in the Sooke area.

Planning has begun on the 5th annual Sooke Region Volunteer Fair to be held in conjunction with National Volunteer Week April 10 to April 16, 2016.  We want to make this the biggest and best event yet.  If you have any new ideas, we'd love to hear them!

The dedicated people who keep our office doors open two afternoons a week are key to our success.  They take on many tasks and learn new things about our communities, enabling us to support promotion, collaboration and resource sharing.  When you have the opportunity please stop in and share a few words with members of our team.  Let us know how we've helped you and your organization, what you have on the go that's new, and where we might be able to assist you in the future.

We would like to thank all of the organizations that took out membership, and of course those who renewed their membership, for your support.  Your vote of confidence in our efforts to support and promote the volunteer ethos in our small piece of the plant is appreciated.

We also wish to thank a few people who were on our team though have moved on to new endeavours: Sheila, Bev, Melinda, and Gail Y.  We thank them for the time and effort they were able to contribute and wish them well with their new projects.

May 2016 be generous and fruitful.

Trudy, Gail P., Gill, Caroline, Marilyn, Jane, Ellen, Les & Marlene

The Sooke Region Volunteer Centre Team


Financial Review for Smaller Non-profit Organizations

Jackie Eastgaard has been auditing non-profit organization records for 10 years.  She is offering to conduct an annual review of smaller, local organizations records as a volunteer. To discuss options and for further details please contact Jackie at ajeastgaard@telus.net

She is also looking for someone to review the Sooke Meals on Wheels Society accounting records for their annual report.  Upon review of their Bylaws they found that a member cannot conduct the audit, and Jackie is a member.  If you are able to help them with this, please contact Jackie as well.



New List of Skill Building Opportunities for Local Volunteers

Whether you are already a volunteer, considering volunteering, or even just plain curious, check out the local training being offered under the Sooke Region Volunteer Centre’s “Recruit, Retain and Retrain” project.

Free ‘Lunch and Learn’ opportunities means this training fits everyone’s budget.  Discounts are offered to Volunteer Centre members, with further discounts when 2 or more volunteers from a non-profit organization register for the same workshop.  Travel subsidies are available for residents from Beecher Bay to Port Renfrew who are travelling 20 Km or more.  If there is enough interest we will bring training to the regional communities.

Workshop Fees:

Lunch & Learns – Free – Bring your lunch, we will have tea/coffee & cookies by donation

2 hour workshops - $30 for General Public, $20 for SRVC members, $17.50 for 2 reps from SRVC member org. attending the same workshop, $15 for 3 or more reps from the same SRVC member org. attending the same workshop;

4 hour workshops - $50 for general public, $40 for SRVC members, $30 for 2 reps from SRVC member org. attending the same workshop, $25 for 3 or more reps from the same SRVC member org. attending the same workshop;

Travel subsidy available for attendees traveling 20+ km.  Must apply for the subsidy before the event date.

The project is funded in part by the Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program. 


Check out our website for full details:

January 20th (2 hrs) - Creating Work/Life Balance for Non-Profits

January 22nd & 23rd (12 hours) - Mental Health First Aid

January 26th (2 hours) - Grant Writing 101

January 30th (4 hours) - Advanced Grant Writing - Sharpen Your Skills

February 3rd (2 hours) - Succession Planning for Non-Profit Organizations

February 27th (4 hr) - From Surviving to Thriving - Date Change



Sooke Region Volunteer Recognition

The District of Sooke recognizes that volunteerism has played a major role throughout the history of Sooke in the betterment of the community in a great variety of ways. For example, the Sooke Community Association was formed in 1934 to help raise money for a new community hall and has been called “one of the most effective volunteer civic groups in Canada”. With over 120 known volunteer organizations in the area, Sooke has claimed the name “Volunteer Capital of Canada” and proudly displays the title on the “Welcome to Sooke” sign.

The District of Sooke chose 2001, the International Year of the Volunteer, to initiate a program recognizing long-time volunteers who have made significant contributions of benefit to Sooke and/or the surrounding region. This program is now ongoing with the last Volunteer Recognition Ceremony held March, 2013. The next ceremony will be held in April 2016.


Download the Volunteer Nomination Form here.

Boundaries – refers to the area included within East Sooke, the District of Sooke, and as far west as Port Renfrew.


Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grants: Round Three

This is a call for expressions of interest from local governments in BC who are leading the way in creating the conditions that enable healthy people and healthy places – in partnership with regional health authorities and other key community stakeholders. There are two streams of support available:

Seeding Healthy Small, Rural and Remote Communities
This stream is open to up to 30 small, rural, and remote communities and includes grants of up to $5,000, along with other capacity building support such as tailored resources, limited coaching and facilitation.

BC Stats and Statistics Canada (2011) define small population centres as those with populations between 1,000 - 29,999 or a population density of at least 400 people/sqkm. Rural / remote communities are classified as those with population under 1,000 OR under 400 people per square kilometer (population density).

Growing Impact: BC’s Next Level of Healthy Communities Leadership
This stream is open to up to five communities of any size, and provides an integrated suite of support including learning events, coaching, a community of practice, and grants of up to $15,000.

Priorities & Focus Areas (Both Streams)

Partnership development and collaboration between local governments, health authorities, and other community stakeholders is a priority, as is working upstream for greater impact in one or more of the following focus areas: healthy eating and food security, tobacco reduction, physical activity, healthy early childhood development, positive mental health and well-being, culture of moderation for alcohol use, injury prevention, and planning for a healthy built environment.


Grant Applications for Stream One and Stream Two will be accepted up until noon (PST) on February 29, 2016. Successful applicants will receive notification by March 31st, 2016.

More Information

Find an overview of the latest Healthy Communities Capacity Building Grants here, to find out which stream is right for your community and important next steps in the grant application process.

If you have questions or require assistance please contact:
BC Healthy Communities Society


The Courage to Come Back Awards

Nominate someone today for a 2016 Courage To Come Back Award!
Click here to go to couragetocomeback.ca

The Courage To Come Back Awards is a province-wide annual campaign that pays tribute to BC residents who have demonstrated extraordinary courage in their recovery from illness or adversity. The awards are presented to one individual in each of the following categories: Addiction, Medical, Mental Health, Physical Rehabilitation, Social Adversity and Youth.

The Courage Awards gala is an uplifting evening celebrating the best in our province. The Chair of the Courage To Come Back Awards is Lorne Segal, President of Kingswood Capital.

What people say about The Courage To Come Back Awards:

"Courage is amazing! It is a life-affirming event."

"It was a very emotional evening."



Program matching Syrian relief donations extended to Feb 29

The best way for Canadians to help people affected by the conflict in Syria is to donate money to a recognized Canadian or international humanitarian or development organization that is responding to the crisis. For every eligible dollar donated between September 12, 2015, and February 29, 2016, by individual Canadians to registered Canadian charities in response to the Syria crisis, the Government of Canada will contribute one dollar to the Syria Emergency Relief Fund.



High school volunteering: As some struggle to secure hours, others raise bar

It's not clear if compulsory community service will turn teens into life-long volunteers.

By Aleksandra Sagan, CBC News (VIA Volunteer Canada)

If  Zayn Alazawi doesn't complete 40 hours of volunteer work, he won't graduate from his Hamilton, Ont., high school. So the 15-year-old spent some of his school-free days this past summer listening to younger kids read at his local library.

He's one of many teens across Canada who must accumulate a certain amount of community service before graduation in order to receive a diploma. 

The provinces and territories that mandate volunteering in high school generally require students to complete between 25 and 40 hours of community service. Students enrolled in the International Baccalaureate program must complete more, though, and those in certain districts, boards or schools may have different requirements.



Preparing Your Short-Term Volunteer Roles

Currently, short-term volunteering is one of the biggest trends in volunteer management. More and more volunteers want to make a bigger impact in a shorter time-frame – maybe they can’t commit to long-term or recurring programs, or maybe they’re drawn to the shorter event or activity you’re running. Either way, volunteer managers, and coordinators want to know how to engage this new crop of short-term volunteers.



Keeping Former Volunteers as Our Long-term Friends

People have many reasons for leaving volunteer service but only a small percentage depart because they are unhappy with their experience in your organization. Of course, some volunteers do leave because of dissatisfaction and, in turn, you may be very relieved to see some disgruntled people depart.



5 Ways to Find the Right Board Members for Your Nonprofit

Assembling a good board is the most important thing you can do when setting up your nonprofit. Plus, keeping a pipeline full of good candidates means that you'll never run short. Board members rotate on and then off of boards. How you handle those vacancies says a lot about your nonprofit's health. 

Finding good board members is easier than ever. We have all the traditional tools but also many online sources to help find good people and communities for reaching them.



Updated Police Check and Criminal Record Check Resource

Want to know the difference between Local Police/RCMP and the Criminal Record Review Program (Ministry of Justice)? Check out Volunteer BC's updated resource along with a new FAQ section.  

It should be noted that PIPEDA does not apply to organizations that are not engaged in commercial activity. As such, it does not generally apply to not-for-profit and charity groups, associations or political parties, for example—unless the organization is conducting a commercial activity (fundraising is not considered a commercial activity).

In addition, PIPEDA will not apply to an organization that operates wholly within a province that has legislation that has been deemed substantially similar to the PIPEDA, unless the personal information crosses provincial or national borders.  Alberta, British Columbia and Quebec have general private-sector legislation that has been deemed substantially similar. (see following section titled “Provincial privacy laws” for more information)


BC's Personal Information Act  http://www.bclaws.ca/EPLibraries/bclaws_new/document/ID/freeside/00_0306...


Civic Info BC Searchable Grants Database

Civic Info BC has a searchable grants database, well two by the look of it.  Our research brought us to two addresses, one with about 70 funding organizations at https://www.civicinfo.bc.ca/grants and a much more extensive database at http://www.civicinfo.bc.ca/rbcs/grant1.asp  We located these through our membership in the GrantStation Database that we took a one year membership in to see how useful it might be to ourselves and other organizations.


5th Annual Sooke Region Volunteer and Non-Profit Fair
will be held Saturday, April 9th, 2016. 
Please put it on your calendar now so we can make this the biggest and best event ever.


Volunteers Are The Roots of Strong Communities

Just like roots are essential for trees to bloom, volunteers are essential for communities to boom. Thanks to volunteers, our communities grow strong and resilient. Even the tiniest volunteer effort leaves a profound and lasting trace in a community, much like tree rings that appear over time.

April 10 to April 16, 2016 is National Volunteer Week (NVW), a time to celebrate and thank Canada’s 12.7 million volunteers. This year marks the 13th consecutive year that Volunteer Canada and Investors Group have partnered to deliver the NVW campaign.

Volunteer Canada and Investors Group’s Volunteer Recognition Study indicates that most volunteers prefer a genuine thank you for their efforts. Sincere words that highlight the impact of a volunteer’s contributions or simple personalized tokens are meaningful and appreciated.

The “Volunteers are the roots of strong communities” campaign will celebrate volunteers across Canada, by offering NVW-branded recognition items made from all natural seed paper that can be planted. Gift packs of seed paper confetti, seed paper journals and seed paper postcards will include space to add a personalized thank you message to a volunteer. Recipients can then plant their recognition item, allowing it to sprout roots that shape new paths and keep growing, much like the incredible efforts of volunteers.


Job Opportunities

The Community Connections Newsletter is an information source for all things volunteer and non-profit.  We obtain most of our information on jobs in the non-profit sector from information received from Volunteer Victoria.  These jobs could be anywhere in the lower island.  For Sooke jobs, though not necessarily in the non-profit sector, we recommend SookePocketNews as the widest source of local job information we have seen compiled.


This is free (to you) marketing and promotion.  We encourage you include it in your regular marketing plans.
Press release, special requests for assistance, AGM information, or whatever you need to get the word out about.  It must be related to something happening within the Sooke region (Beecher Bay to Port Renfrew).  Your logo and or a quality photo will help create eye appeal.  We post it here in our Community Connections Newsletter and then share to our Facebook page 'Sooke Region Volunteers'. 
www.sookeregionresources.com is designed for organizations to create and manage their own listings for timeliness and accuracy.  New listings do not show up immediately as they must go through a security check.  Organizations may have more than one user account and password.
Feature Banner on home-page:  We require a write-up in text format and a quality .jpg photograph (at least 1100 x 300 pixels).  Landscape format generally works the best.  These we create upon request and are usually for special events and can run for up to a month before the event.
We are here to help.  For collaborative endeavours we can create listings and promote as our contribution.  We also provide support to smaller organizations without technical capacity.
The community resources website www.sookeregionresources.com is funded in part by the


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Mental Health First Aid provides people who work directly with the public with skills to effectively handle a potentially difficult situation. The course draws on the ALGEE approach: 

A=Assess for suicidality and the potential for self harm;

L=Listen, don't judge;

G=Give assurance;

E=Encourage them to get help, or call for help yourself; and

E=Encourage them to reconnect with family and friends. 

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