About us

At first glance Greater Victoria is an amazing place to live - an abundance of natural beauty, stable economy, low unemployment and a thriving arts community. However, far too many of its citizens are not able to live life to the full.

In the first 8 months of 2017, 71 people died of an overdose.

By August, air pollution warnings were issued across the CRD as wild fires raged.

Every month 17,000 visits to a foodbank occur.

A lot of energy is dedicated to tackling these issues but it is often not aligning effectively.

Another way forward is possible. When a diverse group of civic organizations work together, we can build effective power for change.

Our current dues paying member organizations are:

  • BC Government and Service Employees' Union
  • St. John the Divine Anglican Church
  • St Patrick’s Catholic Church
  • Sierra Club BC
  • BC Sustainable Energy Association
  • Camosun College Students Society
  • Indigenous Perspectives Society
  • Our Place Society
  • Congregation Emanu-El
  • Shambhala Meditation Centre
  • The Sisters of St. Ann
  • Saint Vincent de Paul Society
  • First Unitarian Church of Victoria
  • AIDS Vancouver Island
  • Greater Victoria Teachers Association
  • Holy Cross Catholic Church
  • Cool Aid Society
  • Cadboro Bay United Church
  • Anawim House

 


  • Upcoming events

    Tuesday, June 05, 2018 at 07:00 PM
    The Baumann Centre in Victoria, BC, Canada

    Together We Can

    GVAT has grown so much in the last year. It's time for us to come together, reflect on our successes and plan for what we'll achieve when we act as one.

    Please be sure to register for this one of a kind event! 

     

     


  • Latest from the blog

    March news!

    We are delighted that in the first 3 months of 2018 we had seven new organizations join GVAT! We now have 18 member organizations. Check out our homepage to see who they are!  Learning together. As part of laying the groundwork for effective future action, GVAT hosted another "Building Power for the Common Good" workshop. 30 different people representing 20 different organizations came together to listen, learn, build relationships and practice some key organizing tools.  Thanks again to Camosun College for hosting us.  Our next one is April 6th. Sign up if you want to take part! Responding to our organizations We have been listening to our member groups and hearing that for many the opioid crisis is affecting them deeply and in different ways. On Monday, March 12th more than 80 people gathered together to reflect and educate ourselves on some of the dimensions of the opioid crisis.  This event was a big milestone for GVAT – for the first time GVAT member organizations came together to act in public. We began the event with a roll call to get a feel for which organizations were represented and display our power. We listened to a series of testimonies and enjoyed some relationship building time together.  Judy Darcy, Minister for Mental Health and Addictions, attended and pledged to work with GVAT in the near future as we move forward into action.       Coming up: Stay tuned for more information about our June 5th celebration featuring the theme “Celebrating Our Power”.  At this time a fantastic group of people, representing a diverse range of member organizations is coming together to help plan it. We are pretty sure it's going to be the best show in town - if you want to help put this one of a kind event on, please reach out!    
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    2018 here we come!

    We are gearing up for an incredible year ahead. The momentum is building! Firstly, we’d like to celebrate that we have 16 signed up, dues-paying, SPECTACULAR organizations! BC Government and Service Employees' Union St. John the Divine Anglican Church St Patrick’s Catholic Church Sierra Club BC BC Sustainable Energy Association Camosun College Students Society Indigenous Perspectives Society Our Place Society Congregation Emanu-El Shambhala Meditation Centre The Sisters of St. Ann Saint Vincent de Paul Society First Unitarian Church of Victoria! AIDS Vancouver Island Greater Victoria Teachers Association Holy Cross Catholic Church First Unitarian's Rev. Melora Lyngood gave an inspiring talk on Sunday Jan. 14th about the Power of Coalition. Here is an excerpt: “It’s no longer the norm for generations of families to all live, play and work in the same neighborhoods; supporting one another through the institutions of civil society: schools, faith groups, community centres. Many of us are transient folks, moving over our lifetime from place to place. Commuting to work in cars. Less connected with our neighbours than ever before. We may choose to stay in touch with a few select friends or relatives but there isn’t that sense of connection with those with whom we share our neighbourhoods, our cities, our world. And so, when things go wrong in our neighbourhoods, our cities, our world, some of us can feel helpless and disempowered. What’s it like for you? When you think of what’s happening to our planet? When you think what people are doing to each other through war, racism or xenophobia, harassment and abuse of all kinds, systems that keep people trapped in poverty and addiction, how do you feel? When you think of the next generation, those delightful, complex little people…when you think of the world they will have to navigate. What do you feel? I feel fear and sadness. These feelings often co-mingle with overwhelm and helpless. I don’t think I’m alone…" ...You're not alone, Rev. Melora! You can download and listen to the whole thing here. It is well worth it, we promise! Is your organization thinking seriously about membership? Please reach out! Harrison Winter School Greater Victoria Acting Together and Metro Vancouver Alliance traveled to Harrison Hot Springs to teach a session on relational organizing at the BC Government Employees Winter School. We spent the morning teaching stewards some of the tools of relational organizing that can be used practically to increase solidarity and bargaining power and - of course, member engagement. Coming up! Community organizing for change workshop This workshop will delve into exploring a tried and tested framework for bringing about transformative change. Through exploring the traditions and values of our labour, faith, community, environmental and educational organizations, we'll learn how to create strong foundations to be able to hold government and corporate interests in Greater Victoria to account. We'll learn about the need to build relationships with diverse organizations in order to have the power to win. You will have the chance to practice some of the fundamental tools of relational organizing. We'll show you how these tools can help strengthen your organization and engage your members. We'll take you on the journey to understand how these tools will lead us to concrete, winnable action. Join us! Saturday Feb 24th 9 – 5pm. Wilna Thomas Cultural Centre, Camosun College (Lansdowne Campus) FREE for member organizations. $50 for non-member organizations (fee can be deducted from your dues when you join). Childcare/ travel bursaries available. Register your place: http://www.gvat.ca/building_power And... A Community Response to the Opioid crisis. We are hearing that many of GVAT’s member organizations are deeply concerned by the different ways they are experiencing the opioid crisis. It's time to come together. To hear each other's stories of how this issue is affecting our members. To educate ourselves on its different dimensions. To build cross-sector relationships and to lay important groundwork for potential action in the future. Join us for an evening of learning, discussion and reflection. Monday, March 12th. 7pm - 8:30pm. Shambhala Meditation Centre, 1-2033 Belmont Ave, Victoria, BC V8R 3Z7 Let us know you're coming.Space is limited. Register at: http://www.gvat.ca/opioid_crisis  
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  • Volunteer Sign up

    Become a volunteer

    We welcome civil society organizations to join GVAT and for the members of those organizations to help the cause.

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