CRD hosting workshops for feedback on arts strategy

The CRD is hosting a series of community workshops to gain feedback to develop the region’s arts strategy.

The CRD is hosting a series of community workshops to gain feedback to develop the region’s arts strategy.

Ten workshops have been scheduled for Sept. 19 to 23 throughout the capital regional district in an effort to identify priorities in the arts strategy and address concerns from the public about arts on the island. The workshops follow consultations with stakeholders from the spring and a public online survey from the summer.

“At this point, we’re in the information gathering and dream hearing state,” said Coun. Colin Plant, who sits on the CRD’s board of directors. “We’re going to see what information is missing and we’re going to ask people to help us shape the arts future of the CRD.

“The goal for the arts committee is to have a document that will provide us a map or a blueprint to having this vision.”

The results of the summer survey indicate a number of goals for the CRD’s arts plan, including increasing awareness and access to the arts in the region, enabling sustainable growth for arts organizations and ensuring the CRD arts service grant programs are responsive to community needs.

While the goals have been laid out, Plant said it’s the steps to achieve those goals that need to be established, and the best way to do that is by reaching out to the public.

“We’re going to ask people to help us develop priorities for action and define future initiatives,” said Plant. “Good governance involve visioning towards the future, and rather than create that vision in a vacuum behind a board table, we’re asking the public to help us shape that future.

“It hasn’t happened in 15 years, so it’s time.”

Each workshop will run two and a half hours and will review research results to date, identify missing information for decision-making and help inform content for the plan. Information gathered from the workshops will be used at the Arts Champions Summit in November, where the CRD will evaluate and formulate a strategic arts action plan for the region.

One Saanich workshop has been scheduled for Friday, Sept. 23 at the Cedar Hill Recreation Centre (3220 Cedar Hill Rd.) from 9:30 a.m to noon. Other workshops, both daytime and evening, have been scheduled in Victoria, Sidney, Colwood and Sooke throughout the week.

To register for a workshop, visit For more information – including discussions, resource materials and updates on the consultation and engagement process – visit



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