Report on Canadians4Compassion Call, March 11, 2015

Report on Canadians4Compassion Call, March 11, 2015

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20 folks signed up from across Canada: Talking about the possibility of Canadian4Compassion Hub and the status of compassionate communities across Canada.

Reporting in

  1. Marcelle Kors: Vancouver: recently officially dormant. Agreed to disband for a period of time. Got so busy.
  2. Kim MacAuley and James Tolbert:  Halifax: in process, starting Feb 2012. Have charitable status soon. Will then seek funding. Working with Education and somewhat for the city, compassion training program going and completed; interfaith enrichment training. Success locally with St. Augustine nonprofit and gotten funds from city. Seek funding to provide funding for toolkit, compassion training and research to offer at little or no cost to organizations. [See downloadable Charter Tool Box from Charter for Compassion in PDFs on the website and introductory exercises to initiate the first step.] [Also remember that the Charter has a Charter for Compassionate Schools.]
  3. Olivia McIvor: Vancouver: problem is that everyone in the organizing group travels a lot. Closing down for now with a potential of regrouping in the future. The Kindness Foundation may be willing to take on a role. [from Marilyn: Two other Canadians who could not join the call are in conversation with the Charter.  Marilyn has suggested using the Charter database for getting names of all people who are listed in a particular area and who are connected to the Charter. Letters can then be sent to them to invite them to a conversation.]
  4. Brenda Robinson: Toronto. Not sure what is taking place in Toronto, but interested in being a part of the group. Brenda is a Charter partner. Marilyn will send info on the Toronto team.
  5. Mary Ella  Keblusek: Ottawa: recently moved to Ottawa from Seattle. Not much going on but reaching out to those who expressed interest earlier. Initiatives for Change, organization she works with may be a good starting point. Again, use the Charter database to spark interest.
  6. Gretta Vosper: Tornoto: New Mayor of Toronto. Intend to get together with folks in Denver on how they are working on a neighborhood basis rather than tackle the whole city at once. They are having a challenge to connect with groups who are secularists or humanists not wanting to work with religious groups.
  7. Ayse: Burlington, Ontario: Just listening today. Not actively doing anything at this time.
  8. Louisa Hext: North of twin cities, Minneapolis/St. Paul. Available to everyone in Charter. Coordinate charter partners and coordinating traveling art exhibit for the Forgiveness Project from England. Offering ideas how to bring people together.
  9. Sande Hart: Southern California. Chief compassion officer in California. Comes through women’s interfaith organization. Focusing on the State. Conceivable as network for all California cities. Container for this work. For dormant cities, seeds still germinating. Concerns for interfaith issues: so we know we have social issues in the community that’s where compassion needs to show up in that uncomfortable space.

Marilyn: called us together after speaking with Janet Leggett and approached others to take over the website and found no one who could do this. Possibly, it is better to have a number of people involved rather than have the "hub" the hands of one individual--possibly think about a representation for Canadians for Compassion. There are other robust programs, Powell River, Winnipeg and Calgary.

Questions raised: Do we need a hub and if so what would it consist of? Could this a hub group influence policy at the environmental and healthcare levels for example? Suggestion from one person not on call: pull together a community time bank.

Structure for ideas for a Canadian hub and at minimum have a Canadian conference call through the Charter. Better if a few individuals could run with this in Canada.

Brenda: is Toronto a compassionate city? No. Registered as an initiative. No action plan and no real group formed yet. Brenda indicated she would like to help with group. Gretta: acknowledged that she can get together with Brenda. Also working with liberal religious organizations.

Jim: Slow process. Not have volunteer capacity to run a hub at this time. Stay in touch first and then develop a stronger network.

Olivia: interested in having a rep in each province and narrow it down to the numbers on a call. How to support each other. Trying to do something in healthcare different in Canada than US. Decide on frequency of call.

Sandy: started with core group in California. Invite leaders from all champions in each city and invite into calls. Invite state representation from diverse groups, growing organically and takes time.  Organic growth came from using the Charter documents and website support.

Tasks to be accomplised

Charter will do database search for Toronto participants.

MT encouraged the group to think about Compassion Games to drive melding and commitment to a campaign; and create diverse partners in the city to broaden ownership of the compassionate cities work.

Ayse: will have more time in September to introduce Toronto to group in Burlington ON. Speak with Brenda and Glenna in September. Charter will run database for Burlington.

Mary Ella: imagine not something as formal as a hub, but one person from each initiative who would be willing to connect on monthly basis and support for what is going on in the Country.

There is strength with the Charter to have individuals in the communities to take the lead.

Seeking charitable status done individually.  However, Halifax willing to share the model that it used to get charitable status.

Note: Marilyn: is there an interest a representative body to bring together to identify strategic directions to take? Joffer Murat in Australia. Pulling together to make (23 million people) a compassionate country. Writing up what he is doing as a case study. First make sure compassionate cities initiatives in all pocket areas. Then form the internal team. Finally, launch a campaign with a solidarity march in the country. Going for chartable status. Giving four months of his time doing this while on sabbatical.

Note: The Charter will soon be offering the capability of providing URLs, domain names and the hosting of Compassionate Community websites.  The cost will be approximately $350/yr which includes about 20 hours of custom design.

Note: from Mary Ella: good to keep the Canadians4Compassion name.

Marilyn work with Louisa and Mary on Next Call.  Next call to happen in early May.

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