WATERSHED MOMENTS, THE VIDEO TRILOGY: “Passion is the glue for collaboration when everyone shares a common set of values and a vision for reconnecting people, land and water,” states Paul Chapman, Chair, Vancouver Island Symposia Series on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate

Note to Editor:

Waterbucket eNews shares the stories of those who embrace “design with nature” approaches to reconnect people, land and water in altered landscapes. We celebrate the commitment, hard work and perseverance of individuals and groups who lead by example to make a difference for the common good.
In this edition, we shine the spotlight on the Watershed Moments Team, a group of individuals representing a variety of organizations who coalesced around a shared vision to do something special. The Watershed Moments Team turned COVID into an opportunity to create a legacy educational resource – the Watershed Moments video trilogy.


“The Watershed Moment Team represents 10 organizations. This includes four layers of government – federal, provincial, regional district and municipal. In less than six months, this remarkable team produced not one but THREE documentaries, with each one being two hours in duration,” stated Kim Stephens, Waterbucket eNews Editor and Executive Director, Partnership for Water Sustainability in British Columbia.

“This is a remarkable accomplishment. Consider that the time from start to finish to produce a single feature-length documentary is typically about one year.  When the folks at Shaw Cable saw the high production quality, they jumped at the chance to broadcast the trilogy on their Vancouver Island network of community channels. And now, anyone in the world with an Internet connection can view the Watershed Moments trilogy on YouTube.”

“The team pulled off this feat with the proverbial shoestring budget – a single $5000 grant from the Real Estate Foundation of BC. The total in-kind contribution by all team members was a staggering $188,000. The third in the Vancouver Island Symposia Series on Water Stewardship in a Changing Climate, the Watershed Moments trilogy is a joint initiative of the Partnership and NALT, the Nanaimo & Area Land Trust.”

Reconnect People, Land and Water in Altered Landscapes

“Producing three videos in just six months required an incredible commitment by all 15 members of the Watershed Moments Team – in particular, volunteer extraordinaire David Mackenzie and the District of North Vancouver’s Richard Boase played pivotal roles behind and in front of the camera, respectively,” states Paul Chapman, Chair of the Vancouver Island Symposia Series. He is NALT’s Executive Director.

“David Mackenzie’s video production skill-set, coupled with his can-do confidence and utmost attention to detail, brought a bold vision to fruition. Richard Boase is a superb and engaging moderator. His on-camera presence shines through in every episode.”

A Team-Building Experience

“With the Watersheds Moments trilogy available on YouTube, it is the gift that keeps on giving. If you heard a team member say something that really resonated, then you can go back and check – Did I hear her right? What did she say? Is that approach applicable here? How would I adapt what I learned to suit my community’s circumstances?”

“As I reflect on all three modules in the series, the thread that attaches them all is the different layers of responsibility that team members represent. Yet most team members only knew a few of the other members when we began our sprint to create the series. Through the shared experience of doing something bold and original, everyone connected and bonded in a way that would not have happened without COVID.”

“Passion is the glue for collaboration when everyone shares a common set of values and a vision for reconnecting people, land and water,” concludes Paul Chapman.

Watershed Moments Trilogy: Each video in the series is a documentary that brings in elements of a TED Talk. This is a game-changer.

In the first video, an inter-regional team comprised of five women talk about local government water stewardship initiatives and the growing networks of collaboration between regional districts and stewardship organizations on the east coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia.

KEY MESSAGE: “An actionable vision for land and water is driven by leadership that mobilizes people and partnerships, a commitment to ongoing learning and innovation, and so importantly – a budget to back it up.”


In the second video, two Tim Pringle and Emanuel Machado describe how to take into account the social, ecological and financial values of ecological assets when developing metrics and calculating the financial value of ecological systems such as streams and adjoining riparian setbacks.

KEY MESSAGE: “We are looking at a whole system. The natural and built environments are interconnected. Without an ecological system, there are no ecological services.”


In the third video, a federal-provincial team of applied scientists elaborate on why the International Year of the Salmon, actually a multi-year program, represents a ‘once in a generation’ moment to reconnect fish, people and the landscape through shared federal-provincial authority.

KEY MESSAGE: “We have the thinking figured out. We can take lessons learned and bring them back to our regional and local context, and inspire people to do better.”


What viewers have stated about the Trilogy:

“Just wanted to pass along a little feedback from someone who attended our community water forum and who is now really enjoying the trilogy series. I was in a meeting the other day and local government representative was telling everyone about this amazing series and encouraging everyone to not only join but to consider this excellent format when thinking about events in this online era. She said it is high quality and highly valuable. Great work!”

“Thanks for letting me in your world. I learned a lot!”

“Thank you for hosting so smoothly, such an inspiring workshop/webinar this morning. It was exhilarating. I felt inspired and humbled. I look forward to the next presentation in the symposia.”

“Today’s program met your high standards.  Excellent. David’s use of photos and video were more than compatible with the dialogue, they softened the format and provided a feel for the commitments and passion expressed by the presenters.”

“Congratulations to all those involved with today’s video broadcast!  Given that much volunteer effort was involved, and it was not “professional” in that sense, the production values were high.  The outdoor clips with the speakers were great.  The editing was fabulous.  And Richard did a great job keeping things going and engaging.”

“Being able to participate virtually is what allowed us to be able to participate and we thought the structure of the symposium was really well done.”

“An excellent video…great message by five dynamic women , professionally presented, and well moderated by Richard.”

“I truly enjoyed the first session of the virtual symposium this morning.  What a slick, professional piece of work indeed.”

“Very informative and well produced series of videos. Thanks for all of your work to educate and collaborate with all stakeholders.”

“This transfer of knowledge, as emphasized by the presenters, needs to become a consistent theme, linking federal, provincial, regional districts and local government to the community level. In essence, to establish in a permanent way that we are all ‘singing from the same song sheet’,  moving from a silo mentality towards an integrated vision and collaborative approach.”

“The presentation was so professional!  You conveyed a great deal of information in an engaging way.  The idea of linking the four island regional districts and their ecological strengths and challenges was powerful.”

“I was impressed with the session this morning.  You did a great job of putting  this together.  What a great group of knowledgeable and eloquent people on screen too!”

“This was a fascinating and beautifully constructed and delivered session today.  What Tim Pringle and Emanuel Machado were talking about is a model founded in the watershed-scale approach and which is a sound and positive approach for others to explore.”

“That third session was brilliant. What an incredible amount of knowledge and insight the panelists shared.  Wow. I want them all to be on the regional biodiversity technical committee that I am hoping to get approval to set up next year! Excellent presentation. I love the fact that they reinforced Leopold’s Land Ethic, which is something I am always talking about down here in the region.”

“Thanks Mani and Tim for your excellent presentations today! Nicely done moderating again, Richard. And David, great job with the video editing!”

“Great work on the video trilogy and another successful Water Symposium! All of the videos were informative and inspiring while still being realistic about the state of our watersheds.”

Watersheds Moment Team

Download a copy of the VANCOUVER ISLAND SYMPOSIA SERIES AT A GLANCE to view the programs for all three events to date