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Fall Education Wrap-up

Published December 15, 2022

CHF Canada’s Education Program had a busy fall! We held regional fall education events in person for the first time in three years, and we collaborated on a National Educators’ Conference.

Regional fall events

Regional federations successfully held both virtual and in-person education events this fall for housing co-ops. CHF Canada holds events in areas of the country that do not have a regional federation.

Six events were held in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Northeastern and Southwestern Ontario and Nova Scotia, with people travelling from across each region to attend. (Unfortunately, Hurricane Fiona cancelled an event in PEI.) Participants and facilitators alike were excited to be together in person again.

Each event included time for networking to share ideas with members and staff in other co-ops. The workshops offered covered a wide range of topics relevant for co-ops in the region. And town hall events provided opportunities to explore new ideas and discuss our future.

Participants told us it was an “awesome experience” that was “well worth the drive, with lots of valuable tips.” Some enjoyed “networking with board members from other co-ops”; town hall participants appreciated “the great group participation with lots of discussion”.

The workshops are the main feature of these events, and participants appreciated the preparation and presentation:

  • “Everything was presented with no nonsense and in clear language.”
  • “You took a difficult topic and made it more approachable.”
  • “Really great facilitator – informative, friendly, engaging.”

Education is an essential investment in housing co-op governance and a co-operative principle. Elections result in new board directors who need access to education to successfully fulfil their duties. It’s gratifying to have new participants tell us, “As a new board member, this workshop was very informative and interesting” and “I’m very glad I came”.

Educators Conference

The Educators Conference was a collaboration with regional co-op housing federations and the Community Housing Transformation Centre.  Held in November, it was a professional development event for housing co-op sector educators to share and develop new skills and exchange ideas and knowledge.

“It was very powerful having that many passionate co-operators in one space,” said Sophie Cooper, CHF Canada’s Program Manager, Education Services. “I’m very optimistic that our housing co-op members will see the positive effects of a re-skilled, re-inspired, more reflective and confidence-boosted pool of educators.”

Thank you to the collaborative efforts of the working group that made the event a success: Ayanna Inniss, Sophie Taylor, Mary Ann Hannant, Sophie Cooper and Deirdre Bain.

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