Connect and Promote Strategy 2018-2020
The mission of SER-Western Canada is to advance ecological restoration in our region as a means to build an ecologically sustainable relationship between nature, community, and the economy by:
- Connecting restoration practitioners to the best knowledge and practice; and
- Promoting ecological restoration to the public, government, private sector, and land managers.
To advance the Connecting part of the mission we need a membership that feels empowered to initiate and carry out activities that will foster communities of restoration practitioners. That empowerment comes from ensuring accessibility: local, short-duration, low or no cost, all ages and knowledge-levels. Fostering communities comes from face-face meetings, where people participate in an activity together – whether it is sharing a meal, planting a tree, releasing a fish, or making sense of a new guideline. Communities learn from and help each other, and celebrate the events with photos and stories to share with others.
To advance that mission we need a board that will play a supporting role approving of start-up funds for proposals, providing advertising and registration or web-hosting services, and posting photos and reports of activities for the benefit of all members. The board recognizes turnover of members is inevitable, and new members from amongst the student community will be essential to bring new ideas and renewed energy.
To advance the Promoting part of the mission we need a membership informed and supportive about SER standards and guidelines, certifications, and scientific publications developed by the international membership. The information is passively available, but must be actively promoted to reach the membership and beyond. We succeeded with a major conference in February 2018, and we can maintain and further promote SER through one or more partnerships in the coming three years without exhausting our volunteer base.
To advance that mission we need a board that is willing to engage with like-minded organizations to organize, deliver, and participate in larger events that qualify as professional development towards professional certification. The board needs to solicit help from the members to distribute the volunteer effort, encouraging both the use of experienced volunteer strengths and development of new volunteer skills.
For 2018-2020 we have a Connect and Promote Strategy to help kick-start the membership into action. These are derived from feedback at the SER WC 2018 conference and through our membership to our board.
Hold more frequent (annual), but smaller (1-day) events that overcome or cater to the geographic locations where our members reside (day-trip within 250 km). There are distinct clusters of members in the lower mainland of B.C., southern Vancouver Island, the B.C. interior, and the corridor between Edmonton and Calgary.
Approaches for Objective 1:
- Create and post on-line and in newsletters a “heat map” identifying where our members reside to help them identify with a regional group, and solicit ideas and volunteers.
- Establish regional activities committees, each with at least a board member, a non-board member, and a student member. Initially the Lower Mainland /SFU-BCIT; Vancouver Island / UVic; Okanagan / TRU-UBCO; Alberta / UofANAIT-Lakeland.
- Post photos and stories of all activities in real time (Twitter, Instagram, Facebook) and on the SER WC web showcase or monthly newsletter to show our members engaged.
Partner with similar organizations to share in delivering at least one major conference or webinar presentation, special session, or workshop to a broad audience that promotes ecological restoration.
Approaches for Objective 2:
- Establish liaison(s) with each of SER Northwest Chapter, Canadian Society for Ecology and Evolution, The Wildlife Society Canadian Section, Canadian Land Reclamation Association and Alberta Chapter, BC Technical and Research Committee on Reclamation, Pacific Streamkeepers Federation, and Saskatchewan Prairie Conservation Action Plan Committee to seek partnership opportunities and options 2018-2020 for consideration by the board and the membership.
- Use newsletters and social media to reach out to SER-WC membership and solicit volunteers willing to deliver presentations or otherwise help organize events – as what we do depends upon the membership.
- Experienced volunteers should be partnered with inexperienced volunteers for the mentoring opportunity to build capacity of our volunteers.
- Advertise any SER-WC endorsed and branded activities as professional development opportunities outside the membership with Provincial Professional organizations and Regulatory Agencies in all Provinces and
- Always consider a cost-recovery fee for service, or sponsorship opportunities to continue supporting a media coordinator contract position.