Category: Meals

Articles about shared meals, e.g. a backgrounder on Community Eats or discussion about how lunches are provided

Women’s groups – November update

There are many groups and events that provide a chance for women to meet together and connect across ages and stages. The connect and engage team can help facilitate women connecting through monthly women’s groups, supper clubs, collage/art and writing gatherings, feminist thealogy course (“Cakes for the Queen of Heaven”) and even informal drop-in meetups over coffee.

Women’s groups

These groups of six to 12 women rotate leadership with the facilitator for that month selecting a topic after consultation with the group and preparing a starting point for a group discussion. Currently there are five groups; three started this year and others have been going for over a decade. On occasion a group is looking for new members or is willing to mentor a new group in forming. Once formed, the groups are closed for a period of time to deepen connections.

Check on the form linked below if you’d like to be notified when there’s an opportunity.

Annual Women’s Gathering

There are usually about 50 women who come in early January for the annual women’s gathering. Afternoon workshops; potluck dinner and evening activities including circle dance and a conversation circle for women already in women’s groups. Plus there are lots of ways to connect and meet each other. This year it will be a fundraiser for our Refugee Committee. Suggested donation $25. Our goal is to raise $1000.

Women’s Supper — or Brunch — Clubs

Here’s the idea: twelve women form a group and take turns arranging a restaurant meal out. With busy lives, we expect six to eight from the group might attend on any one night. One group has formed and we are taking a wait list for a second group, possibly focused around East Vancouver restaurants. The initial group is focused on Fairview/Kitsilano/West Point Grey areas. Click here for details on how the group is planning to operate and let us know if you’d like to be part of a similar group. This first group started with an inaugural meeting of four women who then invited others until there were 12 on the list.

Mend–Make–Do: Monthly Mending Meetup

Not just for women, but so far that’s who’s attending. Our monthly Mending Meetup is a drop-in on the 4th Saturday from 12 noon to 2 pm at the Vancouver Unitarian Centre. Marie Witt sets up sewing machines and provides assistance to anyone who wants help repairing clothes to reduce waste. On occasion we’ll have some special focus and there will always be the tools and supplies to do some mending.

Collage/Art

Several women meet on occasion in Kitsilano or at UCV to make “intuitive collages” on a weekday evening or Saturday afternoon. Mary Bennett coordinates and hosts in her co-op’s common room. These are closed groups at this point, but contact Mary if you’d like to know when we open the invitation list.

Women’s Writing Group

There have been women’s writing groups formed through UCV and we’re taking a wait list for any who would be interested. Like many of our groups this would be a self-led group with members sharing responsibility

Cakes for the Queen of Heaven – Feminist Thealogy Course

We hope to offer this 12-session curriculum in the new year.

Chat on a Sunday?

If you’d like to chat informally about ways to connect with other women, Sheila or Mary (or other women engaged in women’s groups) would be pleased to set up a time to meet up on a Sunday from 12 to 1 pm in Hewett Centre following the service. We would just put a sign up on one of the tables and have an informal gathering and share interests similar to the Sermon Discussion table. We may try to offer this once a month and ensure that at least one woman currently in a women’s group will be there to welcome you.

Get more details as opportunities arise

Sign up here to receive further information about any of these opportunities. 

You can also contact ucvconnect@gmail.com with any questions about getting involved through UCV.

 

How to form a Supper Club (or Brunch Club) — we can help

Your Connect & Engage team has a new approach for how to get to know people better in a friendly, social atmosphere.

One “supper club” has formed: 12 people who will each organize a restaurant meal out once a year.

They’ll choose a restaurant, send details along with the proposed date and time to the “club members”. Then they’ll take registrations, make a reservation and confirm with those who have RSVP’d. Probably they’ll arrive early to be there to welcome people.

At any one time two people will be thinking about the next gathering so if one gets swamped with life, the other can get onto it.

For the group that has formed, there is no regular date (e.g. 3rd Friday or such). They’re just letting the host choose. They have decided on a geographical area. In that case Fairview/Westside and that all selected restaurants will be on an easy transit line with parking nearby (e.g. 4th Avenue or Broadway in this case).

This new format is being proposed as a possible replacement for two other approaches to setting up shared dinners are now longer operating. (Movable Feast and Hygge Potluck Dinners)

Over time each of these groups will make their own decisions about how many people to have in the group; where and when they’ll meet, and whether they’re limiting to a particular kind of restaurant or location.

If you want to be part of a group like this, let us know and we can help you advertise through the order of service and, if desired, set up a google group to make connections with your members easier.

The FUN (Fairview Unitarian Neighbourhood) Women’s Supper Club formed by an initial dinner with four women and they then each invited a few others until the maximum of 12 had confirmed.

Movable Feast was a once-a-month dinner out organized by Karen and Dianne for three years. The attendance varied between 8 and 24.

Hygge Potluck Dinners were monthly potluck dinners hosted in members’ homes organized by Patti and Mary.

In both of these cases, the volunteer organizers got involved in other UCV activities and no one stepped up to carry them on. When the time is right these two programs might be revived.

Signup here if interested.
Go to Shared Dinners – would you like to join a supper club?

Outreach Opportunities Fund – New Recipient

The new Outreach Opportunities Fund recipient for October to January will be Sole Food. During the past seven years, Sole Food Street Farms―now North America’s largest urban farm project―has transformed acres of vacant and contaminated urban land in Vancouver into street farms that grow artisan-quality fruits and vegetables.  It has empowered dozens of individuals with limited resources and addiction and chronic mental health problems by providing jobs, training, and community support.

 

Visit their website here https://solefoodfarms.com/

Intergenerational Dinner a Success!

Prepping for soups and salads

Over 70 participants and volunteers had a great time at last Friday’s  March 15 Intergen gathering.

The evening started with a delicious dinner of appetizers, vegan curry, minestrone soup, spinach salad, organic bread, and  a table’s worth of desserts.

Thanks UBC Sprouts-Community Eats for your donation of produce! A big thanks to the volunteers from the Environment Team and Love Soup who planned and cooked the dinner, and cleaned up.

Dinner over, our stomachs full, we were eager to hear what the evening’s program would bring and we weren’t disappointed. Vivian Davidson emceed the evening  and Tamiko Suzuki explained to the non-Unitarians in the audience about Unitarians having a long history of being loving  **** -disturbers.

Quoc Nguyen from Leadnow, spoke of the mental health benefits of volunteering in these uncertain times. Dr Dave Steele of EarthSave spoke with passion and emotion about animal cruelty in industrial farming.

..and then there was the dessert table…

Dr Tara Cullis, president of the David Suzuki Foundation, spoke of the campaigns with First Nations in the Amazon and up the coast of BC fighting to save their lands from dams, and logging. Lorimer Shenher, writer and ex-member of the Vancouver Police Department, touched on racism, sexism, and mental health in his time working on the Missing Women portfolio in the DTES.

Discussion circle with Lorimer Shenher

After they gave their 15 minute ‘elevator speeches’, the guest speakers spread out in Hewett Hall and the audience was invited to go sit at one of their circles to listen, ask questions or share stories. They could get up and check out another circle whenever they want which kept the energy level high.

(the photos taken of these circles all show people deep in thought or listening intently but there really was movement between the circles).

Discussion circle with Tara. The speakers said they wished they too could have been able to sit in on the other discussion circles as the topics were so varied and fascinating!

The event wrapped up with a group of  Sto’lo and Haida guests who sang a few songs to close out the evening.
Guests were urged to take home some of the produce that hadn’t been used for the dinner; a head of broccoli, a bunch of bananas, or whatever was left in the boxes as a parting gift!

Whisk away to a relaxing June weekend!

Camp Sasamat is 45 minutes away from UCV set on acres of forest at Sasamat Lake in Port Moody.
Come for an afternoon float, campfire sing-a-long, choral workshop, trail walk or fellowship by the water. All meals provided. Accommodations include accessible cabins and showers. All ages welcome and many bring friends and family.
This year’s choral workshop will be led by Kathryn Nicholson (music director for the Helena Choir).
Gabriella Harvey, Jazzfly Video Productions
www.jazzfly.com
Our guest speaker will be Gabi Harvey with a talk entitled:  “Tale of a South American Traveller: A Happy Journey of Exploration”.
https://tricitieschamber.com/ambassador-gabriella-harvey/
Jazzfly Video Productions
www.jazzfly.com
May 31 – June 2, 2019
Sponsored by Beacon Unitarian Church

Intergenerational Activists Gathering. What Is This??


On Friday March 15, the UCV Environment Team is hosting another Intergenerational Activists Gathering.

What is this “Intergenerational thingamajig?” you wonder.

We are glad you asked!  Aside from the somewhat unwieldy name, the “Intergen dinner” (short hand title) first arose in 2017 from a chance encounter that UCV member, Tamiko Suzuki, had with a group of young environmental activists in the community. The young women were complaining of burnout, feeling isolated and unheard, and were wondering if their efforts were worth it. Coincidentally, Tamiko had been hearing the same complaints from the UCV Environment Team as veterans of past campaigns such as Clayoquot sound, and the anti-nuclear and anti-war movements wondered who would take up the battle after them.

1st Dinner

She proposed inviting the young activists  to share dinner and stories in Hewett Hall with the Environment Team and the first Intergenerational Activists Gathering was born.  Karl Perrin of the Environment Team, and Anjali Appadurai of West Coast Environmental Law, were the key note speakers.  The E Team put on the dinner, and guests were given a series of questions to discuss at their table and encouraged to ‘be brave’ and share emails.

2nd Dinner

At the second Intergen dinner in the fall of 2018, the definition of ‘activist’ was broadened to include supporters and anyone who cared deeply about the environment.  Millenial speakers from UBC (Andrew Sheroubi, Arman Mottaghi ) and the community (Nada Grocery) were invited who could share their stories of how they were working to solve environmental and social justice issues.  UBC Sprouts-Community Eats, which  focuses on food sustainability and food security issues, provided the food.

3rd Dinner

The third Intergen dinner, which will happen Friday March 15, will be different again, but promises to be just as fun and interesting! This time, four veterans will be speaking:

Dr Tara Cullis, president and co-founder of the David Suzuki Foundation  https://davidsuzuki.org/,

Dr David Steele, vice-president of Earthsave Canada https://www.earthsave.ca/

Quoc Nguyen, organizer, Leadnow  https://www.leadnow.ca/ and director, Humanity Refugee Society

Lorimer Shenher, acclaimed author and advocate for marginalized people and police reform.

At this evening’s event, to contrast with the previous dinner which was about ‘success stories’, the topic will be “Lessons Learned When Things Went Wrong”  — Failure, near failure, or simply when things don’t turn out as expected, can often teach us more than if everything worked out perfectly.

You won’t be sitting quietly and listening to the speakers all evening, however. During dinner, you will have a chance to meet and chat with your table companions, some of whom will hopefully be of a different generation from your usual friends. After dessert, the keynote speakers will stand up and each give their 10 minute “elevator speech” on the evening’s topic. They will then move to sit at 4 different tables and the audience is invited to circulate among them.  It will be a free flowing hour with everyone encouraged to move about, sit with the speaker for a while, ask questions, and share stories.

Once again UBC Sprouts/Community Eats will provide the food.

Entry is by donation with proceeds to be shared between Community Eats and the Environment Committee Green Fund to further their projects.

To volunteer or if you have questions, contact: environment@vancouverunitarians.ca

As this event will be very popular, and seating is limited, it is recommended you reserve a seat through Eventbrite.  https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/intergen-activists-dinner-lessons-learned-when-things-went-wrong-tickets-56613382150?aff=ebdssbdestsearch

 

 

 

 

 

Three Environmental Events Coming to UCV!

Whether you are a longtime environmentalist concerned about oil tankers and other issues, a social justice activist supporting First Nations concerns–or if you know nothing about these topics and feel now is a good time to start learning–the Environment Team is hosting three upcoming events for you!

 

RAVEN PEOPLE RISING

Sat, Jan 19, 2019 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Location Sanctuary

This is a film screening, a fundraiser and a discussion with Heiltsuk Nation members about their court challenge. They are aiming to enshrine governance of their homelands and waters into law.

With the Unist’ot’en conflict in the news every day, hearing about the Heiltsuk case is relevant and important for us to gain an understanding of Indigenous issues in BC and Canada.
Click here for more information.

 

The RADICALS by Beyond Boarding

Fri, Feb 15, 2019 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Location Sanctuary

With breathtaking cinematography, The RADICALS is a documentary film that follows four snowboarders and surfers driven to become social and environmental stewards through their connection with the environments in which they play.

Follow them as they show the Tahltan fight for the Sacred Headwaters, BC Hydro’s destruction of salmon waters in Xwísten territory, art as resilience on Haida Gwaii, and a coastal uprising against fish farms off the coast of Vancouver Island. Each Indigenous community teaches the athletes to understand what it means to be  truly Radical.

 

Intergenerational Activist Dinner

Fri, Mar 15, 2019 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Location Hewett Hall

Following the success of the fall 2018 Inter-generational Dinner, we are holding another gathering and this time the topic is:  Lessons Learned When Things Went Wrong.

Come join us in Hewett Hall for dinner (courtesy once again of UBC Community Eats). We will follow dinner with stories from some seasoned environmental and social justice activists as they talk of lessons learned from past campaigns. This is a great chance to make new connections, share stories, and learn from their experiences.

 

 

A Weekend of Celebration

A Weekend of Celebration

On Friday, April 6th, the Vancouver Unitarians celebrated their first Passover Seder/Dinner in a long time bringing together 42 folks from across the lower Mainland.  The seder (or service) was brilliantly led by Rob Dainow, a self-declared JewNitarian.  “I grew up in a Jewish family and now make my home in the Vancouver Unitarians community. We always celebrate the main Jewish holidays in my family and it was very nice to share the Passover holiday this year with so many at our UCV seder.  Passover is a celebration of the Jews’ liberation from slavery in Egypt in ancient times; the importance of observing it every year is to tell and retell this story so that we will not forget that we were once slaves and that people continue to be enslaved in many ways today. I was especially happy to share this event and its meaning and traditions with so many who were participating in a seder for the first time.”  
Vivian Davidson, one of the key organizers added, “Indeed it was such a great event, attended by so many remarkable people, where wonderful food, stories, communion were shared. Everybody did such a great job who helped plan and execute that event that I know many people appreciated having attended including me.  I really treasured being able to be part of putting it together.” For many, like Vivian, it was their first experience of a seder.  
Mary Bennett went on to say, “That was just my second passover seder ever and I really appreciated all the efforts put in by so many. Ever since joining the Unitarians and learning…a bit and then a bit more…about Jewish customs, I’ve been quite drawn to them. I like ceremony and ritual and “living traditions” – I love that I now know that people treat the Hagaddah (the book which guides the service and tells the Exodus story) as a changeable script open to new examples and traditions.”
Friday’s celebration of freedom led the way to an intense weekend of fostering connections. The lead-up to the following day’s Lower Mainland conference. A most uplifting and joyous event!
Submitted by Sheila Resels (on behalf of the Passover Planning Team/Jewish Holidays Planning Team).

Civil Liberties + Potluck

Come and enjoy a hyggelei (cosy) potluck dinner with a few other Unitarian church members and friends at the home of Melody Mason (in Kitsilano) this coming Thursday, June 29th. RSVP to ucvhygge@gmail.com

Space is limited. Learn more about hygge dinners.

The evening will include a salon-style discussion about civil liberties.

Melody is on the board of the BC Civil Liberties Association. She’s concerned about, among other things, collection and retention of data by governmental agencies, the state of our prison system and privacy issues especially as it relates to the internet.

She’s interested in both sharing her own knowledge including BCCLA’s stance on these issues and also hearing from you about your take on these important issues and how UCV can engage with these issues.

The BCCLA’s policy director, Michael Vonn, has spoken at UCV Forums including the assisted dying issue.

BCCLA’s current priorities are working on solitary confinement, reforming the assisted dying act and data privacy and retention of data by government agencies. Also an issue Melody feels would be of interest to you is Anti-SLAPP legislation. Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation (“SLAPPs”) are when Big Resources (private or public sector) sue Little Resources (individuals, non-profit organizations) in order to silence them.

You can learn more about the work of BCCLA at https://bccla.org/

Michael Vonn, policy director, has been in the news over the past couple of days about Bill C-24. https://bccla.org/2017/06/extraordinary-victory-citizenship-equality/

Melody feels Unitarians will be interested in the work of BCCLA in protecting ciil rights and hopes we might support some of the issues through actions such as letter writing to senators and members of parliament.

Come and discuss. It’ll be an interesting evening!

Melody is on the Environment Committee and ushers on the first Sunday of every month.

You can hear Michael Vonn on CBC IDEAS in the afternoon next Monday.

Monday, June 26
POLICING: OLD COPS, NEW EXPECTATIONS Counter-terrorism, fighting cybercrime, policing highly diverse societies:

Can the police do it all? Should the police do it all? Do the police want to do it all? Cal Corley, CEO of the Community Safety Knowledge Alliance, and former Assistant Commissioner with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police; Inspector Shawna Coxon, Toronto Police Service; Micheal Vonn, Policy Director, B.C. Civil Liberties Association; and moderator Ron Levi, Director of the Munk School’s Global Justice Lab, weigh the implications, the challenges and the trade-offs for the police, for justice and for all of us.

 

Hygge (Circle) Dinners

Patti Turner and Mary Bennett have taken on coordinating circle dinners with a goal of introducing new members. If you’d like to attend or host a potluck dinner either at the church or in a private home, contact ucvhygge@gmail.com. (“Hygge” is a Danish word for “cosy”.) Dinners are usually for 8 – 10 people in a member’s home to facilitate small group conversation. On occasion they may be at the church to accommodate a larger group.