“In 2018, a Partnership priority was to build enduring relationships with the stewardship sector,” stated Kim Stephens, Executive Director

NOTE TO READER:

Reproduced below from the 2018 Annual Report is the Report from the Executive Director (Kim Stephens). To download a copy of the 2018 Annual Report, click here.

Kim Stephens has four decades of experience in water resource and infrastructure engineering issues. He has played a leadership role in a series of initiatives related to water sustainability, rainwater management and green infrastructure.

Since 2003, Kim has been responsible for developing and delivering the Water Sustainability Action Plan for British Columbia, the partnership umbrella for programs that advance a water-centric approach to community planning and development. Kim Stephens has received international recognition for his pioneering efforts and has been invited to speak on ‘the British Columbia experience’ and make keynote presentations at forums in Australia and throughout North America.

Collaboration in a Changing Climate

In 2018, a Partnership priority was to build enduring relationships with the stewardship sector. We are convinced that community empowerment and sustainable partnerships with local government are key to adapting to the ‘new normal’ – and that is, warmer and wetter winters, longer and drier summers.

In April, we partnered with the Nanaimo & Area Land Trust (NALT) to co-host the 1st Annual Vancouver Island Symposium on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate. Held in Nanaimo, the symposium was a ‘call to action’. The theme? Build on the good outcomes that flow from local government and stewardship sector collaboration!

Nanaimo 2018 introduced a vision for ‘restorative land development’ that would re-establish creekshed function. And it energized an audience of over 150 with this challenge: How will communities ‘get it right’ through collaboration as land develops and redevelops?

Building on the energy generated at Nanaimo, we have expanded our collaboration to include the Mid Vancouver Island Habitat Enhancement Society (MVIHES). NALT, the Partnership and MVIHES are co-hosting Parksville 2019: Second Annual Vancouver Island Symposium on April 2-3-4 in the City of Parksville.

Parksville 2019 will celebrate local government initiatives on Vancouver Island that are ‘getting it right’. These success stories are characterized by three attributes: commitment, collaboration and the ‘hard work of hope’. A decade of effort, by partnerships of local governments and community stewards, is demonstrating success on the ground where it matters. They are on a pathway to reconnect hydrology and ecology.

The program design for the Parksville 2019 Symposium builds on a large body of collaborative work undertaken over decades in British Columbia and Washington State. When creekshed protection policies and practices are based on an understanding of WHY and HOW hydrology is the engine that powers ecological services, then they would be effective in achieving desired outcomes.

Parksville 2018 will celebrate local government initiatives that are ‘getting it right’. Follow the leaders! Join us in Parksville to learn more.