Sometimes organizers don’t need more training, but instead are looking for a supportive environment to work through their big challenges, get coaching, and find inspiration. Organize BC’s annual Organizer Retreat, now in its third year, brings together some of the best organizers in BC and creates a supportive and fun space where organizers can learn from each other and work through their biggest organizer conundrums.
Organizers spend three days living together at a summer camp on Gambier Island in Howe Sound.
Interested? Apply now for the Organizer Retreat. Applications are due by October 17th.
Note: Are you from an Organize BC Partner organization (Dogwood, Force of Nature, Leadnow, One Cowichan, West Kootenay Eco Society)? Talk to the Organize BC point person at your organization before applying.
Who is it for?
Anyone actively working to change the world through grassroots engagement or community organizing who wants to join a community of organizers trying to do the same. Past Organizer Retreats have included volunteers and staff, organizers working on local, provincial, and national campaigns, digital organizers, field organizers, volunteer coordinators, organizing directors, and campaigners designing volunteer-driven campaigns. Most participants are from BC, but we have had Americans and folks from other provinces attend in the past.
Tuition for the Organizer Retreat is $390. The fee includes meals, accommodation, and water taxi transportation from Horseshoe Bay. Participants are responsible for their own travel to and from Horseshoe Bay.
Scholarships are available for individuals and organizations who cannot afford the full fee. You'll be given a chance to request a scholarship as part of the general application process. If your application is accepted, payment of your tuition is required to confirm your registration.
Dates & Location
The Organizer Retreat will be at Camp Fircom on Gambier Island. Arrival and departure is at the public docks at Horseshoe Bay in West Vancouver - we’ll organize your water taxi to Gambier Island. We will meet bright and early at the public docks at Horseshoe Bay at 8:50am on November 24 and arrive back to Horseshoe Bay by 4:00pm on November 26.
If you cancel by November 8, we will issue a refund less a $50 cancellation fee. No refund is available for cancellations after November 8 unless for medical reasons or personal or family emergencies.
Most buildings at the camp have one or more stairs to access them. Paths at the camp are well kept and fairly even, but are gravel and do have some puddles/divots in them. There is a 5-minute walk up a moderate hill from the dock to the camp (a ride can be arranged); our luggage will be transported for us.
The washrooms in some buildings are segregated by gender; in others, there are private, gender-inclusive washrooms.
There is a mix of wooden benches, chairs and couches for seating in the various rooms we will be using.
Accommodation is primarily in shared rooms of 2-3 people with a mix of single beds and bunk beds. Camp Fircom is a summer camp that does conference and retreat rentals in the off season. As far as summer camps go, it is comfortable and well maintained, but it’s certainly no hotel! There is a possibility of arranging a private room for folks with specific needs.
If you have questions about the retreat or want to talk to someone about more details, email Peter at [email protected]