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Fairview Neighbourhood Gathering II
In 2015, in collaboration with the presidents of two other 7th Avenue strata complexes, we received our first Vancouver Foundation Neighbourhood Small Grant that enabled us to host a one-day summer event, a combination Barbecue and Pot Luck, for residents of our three strata groups. The aim was to bring neighbours together for the first time to share food, get to know one another, and engage in positive social interactions.
This really changed the nature of the relationship among the five members of the organizing committee because we were, for the first time, working together for a common cause. The courtyard party was a great success and we felt that we had made a big step forward in enabling people to get to know one another in a relaxed setting, in helping create a greater sense of belonging, and in achieving our overall goal of developing a more inclusive, safer, & healthier community.
In 2016 we applied for a second grant so that we could expand and invite other neighbours from the area. Our one-day event, once again a combination Barbecue and Potluck, took place in the same courtyard on Sunday, July 10. We were pleased to have had 20 participants, ranging in age from 12 to 87, and representing several different cultures and countries of origin.
In addition to residents from our three small condominium complexes, a neighbour who lives in one of the few houses in this area attended, as did one person from the Vancouver Chamber Choir whose office is located in a near-by Heritage House. The neighbour from the residential house has lived there since 1972 and this is the first time she had actually met other neighbours living on our street.
At the beginning of our event, we posted a “loose agenda” so that those arriving at different times would know that they should sign the media release form and participate in our icebreaker game entitled “Find Someone Who” that was based on information specific to each participant. We found that this was a really good way to learn something new about each person, get to know others quickly, and have a good laugh. Everything went really well; social interactions were very positive, and even the weather co-operated.
We would like to thank the Vancouver Foundation, as well as the coordinators from the two Neighbourhood Houses for your ongoing support over the past two years.