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Neighbourhood Services News

Winter Neighbourhood Challenge 

Let’s have some fun this winter! Challenge yourself, your friends or your family to participate in the Winter Neighbourhood Challenge! Explore your neighbourhood and stay socially connected while maintaining safe physical distance and adhering to all public health measures.

A new challenge will be posted online on the 1st and 15th of each month, January - March, 2021. To enter, complete the challenge safely, fill out the online entry form and submit your photo. You will be entered into a prize draw for each challenge you complete. The winner of the January physical fitness challenge was Jason from Woodcroft!

February 1-14: Notes of Kindness Challenge

Drop an anonymous note of kindness, craft/drawing or small prize on a neighbours doorstep with a note that says "pass it on." If you prefer to stay in, you can leave a thank you note for someone on your door (i.e., postal worker or delivery person, neighbour in your building). Take a photo of the note and submit it with your entry.

In addition to submitting your entry you can also share on social media using the #yegneighbouring hashtag. Stay safe, be creative, and enjoy each winter neighbourhood challenge!

Click here for challenge details and the online entry form!

"Creating a Neighbourly Vibe" Workshop with Abundant Community Edmonton

Interested in getting more connected on your block, building or cul-de-sac? 

This is an introductory workshop to learn more about  Abundant Community Edmonton (ACE) -- a grassroots initiative fostering neighbour to neighbour relationships. If you are interested in cultivating a culture of care and connection, increasing the sense of belonging and inclusion, and creating a healthy and livable city, this workshop is for you. The Creating a Neighbourly Vibe workshop is currently offered virtually, twice per month.

Upcoming workshops dates: 

February 10, 6:30 p.m.

February 23, 1 p.m.

March 9, 6:30 p.m.

March 24, 1 p.m.

Click here for more information or to register.

Participatory Edmonton Symposium - Animating Spaces Where Everyone Matters

Join the conversation on making more inclusive, caring and healthy neighbourhoods. It’s not simply about bringing people and ideas together, but providing guidance and resources to animate Edmonton spaces.

SAVE THE DATE: March 6 & 13, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Watch for event details, coming soon on Eventbrite, or contact abundantcommunity@edmonton.ca for more information.

Community Connections

Cross Country Ski Trails Closer to Home
Neighbourhood Services has been excited to work with Edmontonians as we search for new ways to enjoy the outdoors closer to home. During the pandemic, interest in cross-country skiing has exploded across the region. The Edmonton Nordic Ski Club has reported a 50% increase in memberships this year, and many communities across the City have been looking for ways to provide cross-country skiing opportunities within their neighbourhoods. 

Recently, the west end communities of Woodcroft, Sherbrooke, Prince Rupert, Glastonbury, and The Hamptons all reached out to their Neighbourhood Resource Coordinators (NRCs) to seek City approval for setting cross-country ski trails within their neighbourhood parks. Residents expressed interest in having local trails, and the Community Leagues worked with their NRCs to obtain approval from the City and make the vision a reality. 



In a year with social distancing and restrictions on indoor gatherings, these communities were able to think outside the box and create an opportunity for Edmontonians to keep active within their neighbourhoods. Community leagues have been grateful for City support and residents have greatly appreciated the efforts of these community volunteers:

"Thank you so much for your hard work and commitment to making this community so wonderful. This is such a welcome addition, especially this year when we are trying to enjoy the outdoors as much as possible.”

-Visitor to The Grange District Park ski trails in The Hamptons

To date, the City has provided licences for groups in six different neighbourhood parks to lay cross-country ski trails with many other groups exploring this option for future years. To learn more about this opportunity, please call 311 and ask to be connected with your Neighbourhood Resource Coordinator

Bringing Joy to Neighbours
Two southwest Edmonton neighbourhoods got creative and brought some holiday joy to their communities in December. 

With funding support from Neighbourhood Services, Lansdowne Community League hired a local artist to paint festive winter images on the windows of their hall. One of the windows included a painting of Santa intended to facilitate some DIY family Christmas photos in lieu of their annual holiday celebration. In their December newsletter, the Lansdowne board noted, “We may not be able to celebrate together, but we hope this helps you and yours feel some Christmas cheer in this very different season.”

   

(Left) A young Lansdowne resident admires the holiday window display on the Community League Hall; (Right) Julia, a Parkallen resident, receives a grinch tree through the neighbourhood “Share the Cheer” initiative.

Parkallen Community League took a different approach to bringing joy to neighbours with their “Share the Cheer” initiative. Residents were invited to nominate a neighbour who could use a little extra holiday cheer. With funding support from Neighbourhood Services and a donation of fresh greens from Strathcona Home Depot, volunteers created and delivered Grinch-themed table top centerpieces to 35 residents and businesses in the neighbourhood. Recipients were touched by the spontaneous gifts and thanked the nominators and organizers for bringing a little bit of joy to their lives during a trying time.

Reach out to your Neighbourhood Resource Coordinator (NRC) if you have ideas to help bring joy to your community this winter. NRCs are assigned to every neighbourhood in Edmonton and can support you with building connected, inclusive communities.

Warming and Brightening Edmonton Neighbourhoods 

Neighbourhood Services was pleased to provide funding support to over 23 communities to brighten their neighbourhoods with festive lights and/or fire pits to make outdoor activities more inviting for residents this winter. Fire pits and lighting can help create safer, more welcoming spaces for everyone in the community, especially during the colder, darker winter months. Many of these projects have been championed by community league volunteers--so be sure to thank your community league for taking the time and effort to make your community glow!

Click here to see EPS Beat Officers assist with the official light up of Central McDougall Community League's gazebo in December.

February is Black History Month 

Each February, people across Canada celebrate Black History Month with festivities and events that honour the legacy of Black Canadians and their communities. Mayor Don Iveson has proclaimed February as Black History Month in Edmonton. Looking for ways to learn more and engage? Edmonton Public Library (EPL) invites residents to learn more about Black heritage and culture, and consider the historical significance and contemporary contributions of Black activists and artists from around the world. Click here for EPL’s Black History Month resources and reading recommendations for all ages!

CLICK TO SHARE YOUR STORY WITH KEEP NEIGHBOURING!
COVID-19 Updates

Please visit edmonton.ca/covid-19 for updated information on City programs and services that are impacted by restrictions.

For more information on the Government of Alberta’s mandatory province-wide restrictions please visit https://www.alberta.ca/enhanced-public-health-measures.aspx

Other City of Edmonton News

Edmonton Winter Festivals Reimagined

Several winter festivals are returning to Edmonton this February in a new, reimagined way! Visit the festival websites below to learn more about how they are adapting to current public health measures and creating opportunities to get active outdoors and celebrate winter in Edmonton!
 

Deep Freeze: A Byzantine Winter Fête - February 5-24

Radically reinvented with health and safety at the forefront, Deep Freeze returns this February 5-24 with a combination of virtual and open air experiences. This year's Deep Freeze winter experience will be a 10-day affair, expanded across seven neighbourhoods and Borden Park. This is a free family event uniting Ukrainian, Franco-Albertan, Franco-African, First Nations, Chinese, Latin American, and Acadian/East Coast communities to taste, share and experience the Olde New Year. For more information please visit deepfreezefest.ca.


Silver Skate Festival -  February 12-21 

Silver Skate returns to Hawrelak Park in a reimagined way this year. While there will be no formal gathering or typical festival programming, organizers have created an abundance of DIY winter-friendly experiences and challenges you can do safely with your household on your own time. The goal for 2021 is to provide you with the tools to sculpt your own Silver Skate winter experience. Activities include a snow sculpture garden, Silver Skate Folk Trail, heritage village installation, and much more. Visit silverskate.ca for full program details!

Boardwalk Ice on Whyte - February 12

The 2021 Boardwalk Ice on Whyte Sculpture Tour begins on February 12. Click here for details!
 


Flying Canoë Volant - March 1-6

Click here for the festival program and important updates for 2021!

Random Acts of Connection

A sense of belonging and connection is a key ingredient for positive mental health. “Random Acts of Connection” is a new video series that profiles the multitude of ways to find meaning and connection in Edmonton throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Follow along and share with others on social media using #RandomActsOfConnection or click here to subscribe via email to receive a new video in the series which will be released the last week of each month.

The first video featuring Dr. Denise Larsen of the University of Alberta is titled "A Message of Hope."

New Waste Carts Coming Soon to Edmonton

The way residents sort and set out waste in Edmonton is changing. As part of the Edmonton Cart Rollout service changes, all single unit and some multi-unit homes will automatically receive a large (240L) garbage cart, a regular-sized (120L) food scraps cart and a small food scraps pail between March and August 2021 at no cost.

 New collection services include:

  • A garbage cart that will be collected every two weeks.

  • A food scraps cart that will be collected weekly in spring, summer and fall and every two weeks in the winter.

  • Recycling collected weekly in blue bags with no volume limits.

  • Two seasonal yard waste collections in spring and two in the fall with no volume limits.


If a resident knows they produce less waste, they can request a small (120L) garbage cart at edmonton.ca/waste by February 12. By choosing a small cart, residents will save $3.90/month off the current monthly utility rate starting in October 2021. A garbage cart size calculator is available online to help residents decide on the garbage cart size that works best for their home. An opportunity to exchange garbage cart sizes will be available after cart delivery.

 The carts will be collected by an automated collection truck instead of the current hand collection. Edmontonians can find their cart delivery period, first collection day and new sorting information at edmonton.ca/waste or downloading the WasteWise app. 

 

Safe Travels in Winter Takes a Community Effort

Effective snow clearing takes a community effort. Edmontonians play an important role in supporting neighbours, City staff and contractors by keeping sidewalks clear of snow and ice and moving their vehicles off the street during snow plow events.

The City of Edmonton is improving how we clear snow from roadways through a new two-phase parking ban starting this winter. This new ban will help City crews clear streets quickly and safely.

The City only clears residential roads during a parking ban or in response to notifications from residents. If your street has a safety concern, or ruts are getting difficult to navigate, please report this through 311 and a crew will be dispatched to action the service request. Culs-de-sac are cleared during a separate operation, as they require special equipment to navigate those tight turns. 

Beyond the important things like keeping sidewalks adjacent to your property free of snow and ice, moving your vehicles during parking bans is a major contributor to the speed, efficiency and quality of service that City crews can deliver.

Plan ahead. We encourage residents to make a parking plan for when a parking ban is in effect. For more information about snow clearing in Edmonton, winter sidewalks, and to learn more about the parking ban, visit edmonton.ca/SafeTravels

New Bus Network and On Demand Transit Coming this Spring

The way transit customers move around the city is changing April 25, 2021. Edmonton Transit is launching new bus routes that are more frequent, more direct and better connected. These new routes are being complemented by On Demand Transit shuttle bus service. This adds another layer of service to connect areas of the city without a regular bus route.

Edmonton’s new bus routes are more direct and buses will come more often. Service will be expanded into evenings and weekends in many areas that currently receive only peak hour service, Monday to Friday. For more information visit edmonton.ca/newbusroutes.

On Demand Transit is being offered in 30 neighbourhoods and at 16 large seniors’ residences that won’t have a community route in the new network. Customers will book a ride on a shuttle that will take them between set pick up/drop off locations in their community and a designated transit hub. This service will provide customers with a safe and convenient connection to the regular bus and LRT system. For more information visit edmonton.ca/ondemandtransit.

On Demand Transit vehicle with wheelchair lift

New Online and In-Class Programs Coming to City Arts Centre

Explore your creative side and learn something new with one of our arts programs! Try your hand at painting, drawing, pottery, dance, cooking, sewing, photography and more. We have courses for all ages including children, youth and families. We currently offer virtual programs from the comfort of your home and are taking registrations for future in-class programming. Visit MoveLearnPlay to register online or email cityartscentre@edmonton.ca for more information.

What’s in Your Cupboard? A Closer Look at Some of the Pests that May Reside in Your Household

As we find ourselves spending more time at home in recent weeks, you may have noticed a creature or two sharing your living space. While most are harmless, there are a few nuisances that you may find in your pantry or cupboards from time to time. Click here to learn more about the neighbours you didn’t know you had!

Funding News

TD Park People Grants - Help Build Vital Connections Between People and Parks

TD Park People Grants support activities that promote environmental education, sustainability and stewardship in Canada’s parks and green spaces. Apply now for $2000 to support your vision to help connect people to their local parks and green spaces. Applications are open from January 13 to March 1, 2021. Grant recipients are announced in April and activities take place between April 17 and December 31 2021. Click here to learn more.

Community Spaces Funding

The Co-op Community Spaces Program was established to improve community health and well-being by building places to come together, build social connections and enable community development. In 2021, the program will support projects in three categories: Recreation, Urban Agriculture, and Environmental Conservation. Projects are eligible for funding between $25,000 and $150,000. Applications for the program are open from February 1 – March 1, 2021. Visit the link above for more information or review the FAQ package here.

ParticipACTION 2021 Community Better Challenge - June 2021

The ParticipACTION Community Better Challenge is an annual event that gets Canadians across the country moving together. Organizations can apply for grants between January 25 - February 26 to help put on great physical activity events (either in-person or virtually) during the challenge, which runs from June 1-30, 2021. At the conclusion of the 2021 challenge, one community will earn the top prize and title of being Canada’s most active community. In addition to the national winner, there will also be finalists recognized from all provinces and territories. Click here for more information including the grant application guidelines.

Resources and Learning Opportunities

Serve your Community on the Board of the Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues

The Edmonton Federation of Community Leagues (EFCL) is currently seeking board members for a number of positions. As a non-profit organization, EFCL is governed by a 12-person, volunteer board of directors, with one director elected by community leagues in each of 12 districts. EFCL board members come from all walks of life, from civic leaders and business owners to professionals and academics. What they all have in common is a dedication to the community. If you have experience sitting on a board, are a member in good standing with your community league and believe in the community league movement, consider standing as representative for the EFCL district you live in!

Please visit the EFCL Website or contact  leaguesupport@efcl.org. District Representatives will be elected by the members of each district present at the Annual General Meeting, Regular General Meeting, or a District Meeting.

Join the EFCL’s Online Winter General Meeting!

It's one of three public general meetings hosted annually to keep Edmontonians up-to-date on the organization and their work. All are welcome to attend, February 16 from 6:30-9:30 p.m. Click here for event details. PLEASE NOTE: Each Community League designates a voting member to represent the neighbourhood’s perspective. Please connect with your League directly to find out who is voting on behalf of your Community.

Free Board Development Webinars

Are you a board member? Thinking of becoming one? Get professional development for board governance and operations in these free board development webinars from The Alberta Community Development Unit:

Feb 10: Financial Responsibilities

Feb 11: Grant Writing 101 - A Live Interactive Webinar

Feb 17: Risk Management

Feb 18: The Role of the Board Chair - A Live Interactive Webinar

Feb 24: Committees and Meetings

Mar 2: Grant Writing 101 - A Live Interactive Webinar

Mar 3: Building Strong Teams & Effective Relationships

Click here for more information and to register. Space is limited so register early!

Understanding Hate and Extremism - Virtual Workshops

Throughout February, The Resiliency Project will be hosting a free webinar series on understanding hate and extremism that will benefit social service providers and community organizations. The Resiliency Project is a collaboration between the City of Edmonton, Edmonton Police Service, and the Organization for the Prevention of Violence. The aim of this project is to work with the public to prevent and counter violent extremism through awareness, education, research and online and offline intervention. The dates and topics for the webinars are as follows:

February 11: Understanding Hate and Extremism

February 18: Local Context, Case Studies, and Prevention of Hate-Motivated Violence

February 25: Understanding and Reporting Hate Crimes and Incidents

Click here for more information and to register for the free webinar series. For questions, please email Landon Turlock at landon.turlock@edmonton.ca.

Neighbourhood Services supports neighbourhoods to build and maintain connected communities. Keep Neighbouring shares inspiring community stories, City updates relevant to neighbourhoods and other resources to support community building.
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