Around Town: Women Deliver, Artisan Fair, HomeStart’s truck . . .

Carol Thiessen of Canadian Foodgrains Bank tweeted: “Three powerful advocates for rural women . . . these women are championing it for rural women in Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda.” From left: Monica Mhoja, Shepherd Tipo Telwia and Toni Habinshuti.

Every three years the massive Women Deliver Conference gathers thousands of participants. This year they are meeting June 3 – 6 in Vancouver under the theme ‘Power.Progress.Change.’

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed the gathering, and there were a number of high profile speakers (including Melinda Gates, the CEO of World Bank and the presidents of Ethiopia and Ghana).

Several Christian groups are participating as well. A couple caught my attention in particular because they have strong roots in the Mennonite community across Canada, not least in the Fraser Valley.

Canadian Foodgrains Bank and MEDA have grown from small beginnings into significant international players, with relatively little fanfare, even in the Christian community.

Canadian Foodgrains Bank

Members of Canadian Foodgrains Bank took part in ‘The Real Groundbreakers: women food producers transforming rural landscapes’ June 4:

Rural women in developing countries are vital economic players in their communities. Many are food producers, crucial to their families’ health and nutrition, and are agents of change. But gender inequality holds them back.

This special event at the Women Deliver 2019 Conference will explore the challenges women food producers face and will hear solutions from women who are championing gender equality, confronting injustice, and are helping to end hunger and malnutrition in their communities. These women are the real groundbreakers.

Here a brief description of how Canadian Foodgrains Bank began and what it does, from its site:

In 1976, amid growing world food emergencies, Mennonite Central Committee created a pilot project to allow Canadian grain farmers to share their harvests with those less fortunate around the world. In 1983, the project was re-organized, opened to other church agencies and re-established as the Canadian Foodgrains Bank. . . .

Fifteen church agencies, representing 30 denominations with over 17,000 congregations, make up the membership of Canadian Foodgrains Bank. . . .

We work toward [our] goal by: providing food in times of crisis for hungry people in the developing world; helping people grow more food to better feed themselves and their families; and providing nutritional support to malnourished people with a focus on pregnant and breastfeeding mothers and young children.

In 2018-19, we helped over 800,000 people in 36 countries. Foodgrains Bank programs are implemented by our member agencies in the developing world.

MEDA

Dr. Dorothy Nyambi is the new CEO of MEDA.

MEDA (Mennonite Economic Development Associates) is “an international economic development organization whose mission is to create business solutions to poverty.”

MEDA’s new CEO Dorothy Nyambi is introducing herself on a North American tour. Martin Cash interviewed her for the Winnipeg Free Press just before Women Deliver:

More than 60 years after it was originally formed to assist Mennonite dairy farmers in Paraguay, the scope and size of projects that MEDA (Mennonite Economic Development Associates) is involved in have grown consistently.

The organization that used to be based in Winnipeg has also spread its geographic wings as well. For instance, within $35 million to $40 million in typical annual capital spending, current large projects take place in Jordan, Senegal and Myanmar. . . .

Over the years, it has helped 103 million families in 62 countries, where its efforts have created jobs and helped build commercial networks that have left positive impacts on entire communities. It now has about $250 million worth of projects on the books for the next five years in partnership with organizations like Global Affairs Canada, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and a number of other national and international development agencies.

Nyambi, who practised medicine in her home country of Cameroon as well as other parts of Africa, Asia and eastern Europe while she worked as a medical doctor for the U.S. Peace Corps, said one of the things MEDA is now more attentive to is the support of women.

“Development financing is changing,” she said. “Another thing that is changing… is how we intentionally reach out to women and make sure women do not get left behind.”

Go here for the full article. MEDA is participating in four workshops during the conference. Other Christian groups are involved at Women Deliver as well. World Vision, for example, is actually a sponsor of the gathering and their representatives took part in a number of events, while Canadian Lutheran World Relief had a booth right beside Canadian Foodgrains Bank. World Renew and PWRDF were also there.

Artisan Fair

First Christian Reformed Chuch has been a good neighbour to Welcome House ever since it was completed in the spring of 2016.

Operated by Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISSofBC), the six-storey facility has been the first stop for many refugees arriving in Vancouver. The two buildings sit side-by-side between 10th and 11th on Victoria Drive.

First CRC hosts community dinners every Wednesday night to welcome refugees, immigrants and other neighbours of the church.

And this Saturday they are hosting Artisan Fair which will raise money to support refugees. Here is how they describe the event:

Join us for an Artisan Fair to support newcomer artists, musicians, chefs, and crafters from Iraq, Mexico, Join us for an Artisan Fair to support newcomer artists, musicians, chefs, and crafters from Iraq, Mexico, Congo, Iran, Syria, and more. Saturday, June 8 from 1 pm – 4 pm.

Suggested entrance donation is $2/ person or $5/ family, with donations going to Welcome Boxes for newly-arrived refugees. Cash only please!

HomeStart’s truck

HomeStart Foundation is one of those Christian ministries around town that quietly carries on with its good work, in their case helping to furnish homes for people who need a bit of a hand. But when they recently discovered that their truck needs some major work they did reach out.

A June 5 tweet said: Please help! We urgently need funds for repairs to our truck – $7000 to be exact.

Here’s how HomeStart describes its work:

* About: Furnishing Homes, Rebuilding Lives. A furniture bank to provide the basics to people in need. Also on Twitter @HomeStartFdn

* Company Overview: We’re a Christian humanitarian organization dedicated to providing essential home furnishings to people in need.

* With 100% donated furniture, we furnish homes for people who have been previously homeless. Our clients are refugees, women & children escaping domestic violence, youth aging out of foster care and others who would have no other way of making a comfortable home.

* General Information: We work with more than 70 social service agencies who refer their clients to us. We always have lots of offers of furniture but also need funding to help stay on the road. It costs $270 to furnish a home.

Here are links to their Facebook page and to a donation page.

May 30, 2019

The Cake – May 30, 2019 - June 8, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

June 6, 2019

Welcome to Worship – June 6, 2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

June 7, 2019

Starfield: The Reunion Tour – June 7, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Vance Nelson: The Brief History of Mankind – Evidence for the Tower of Babel – June 7, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
Ellisa Sun & Ursidae – June 7, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm

June 8, 2019

Memorial Service for Pastor Tom Cheung – June 8, 2019 at 10:30 am - 12:30 pm
Artisan Fair – June 8, 2019 at 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Alzheimer's Café – June 8, 2019 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Vance Nelson: Monumental Monsters / The Brief History of Mankind – June 8, 2019 at 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Creation Science Association of BC AGM Dinner Meeting & Dire Dragons: the Missing Link in Dinosaur History with Vance Nelson – June 8, 2019 at 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Hymn Festival: I Will Sing of the Mercies of the Lord – June 8, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

June 9, 2019

Leave a Legacy – June 9, 2019 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am
Jazz Vespers in the Valley: Kristian Alexandrov Trio – June 9, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
African Children's Choir: Just as I Am Tour – June 9, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
VOS 2019 Spring Concert: A Psalm for Our Time – June 9, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

June 10, 2019

Redefining Healing Seminar – June 10, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

June 12, 2019

1,000 Women in Religion Edit-a-thon – June 12, 2019 at 8:00 am - 12:00 pm
UGM Summer Connect – June 12, 2019 at 11:00 am - 3:00 pm

June 13, 2019

Memory House by Kathleen Tolan – June 13, 2019 - June 15, 2019 at All Day
SongStage with Ivan Boudreau – June 13, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

June 14, 2019

Pastors Forum: Pastors for the Common Good – June 14, 2019 at 9:15 am - 11:30 am
The Practices of Faith in the World of Work – June 14, 2019 - June 15, 2019 at 2:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Notes of Freedom – June 14, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

June 15, 2019

Journey Home Refugee Support: Basic Training – June 15, 2019 at 8:45 am - 3:00 pm
Step Up! Speak Up! Freedom Rally – June 15, 2019 at 10:30 am - 12:30 pm
National Indigenous Peoples Day Celebration – June 15, 2019 at 1:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Golden Threads from Heaven: Weavings by Debra Sparrow – June 15, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
The Porter's Gate Worship Project: featuring Isaac Wardell, Audrey Assad & more – June 15, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm

June 16, 2019

Prayer Rally for Hong Kong – June 16, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

June 18, 2019

Beulah AZ Café (third Tuesday of each month) – June 18, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm

June 19, 2019

EFC Webinar: What Churches Can & Cannot Do During a Federal Election – June 19, 2019 at 9:00 am - 9:45 am
Leaving a Legacy: a seminar on wills, estates & legacy gifting – June 19, 2019 at 10:00 am - 11:30 am
Indigenous People's Day Celebrations – June 19, 2019 at 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
Jazz Evensong – June 19, 2019 at 8:00 pm - 9:30 pm

June 20, 2019

Canadian Viewpoints: Concealed and Revealed – June 20, 2019 - July 12, 2019 at All Day
DivorceCare (ongoing, several locations) – June 20, 2019 - January 7, 2020 at All Day
We are the Body by Andrew Kooman – June 20, 2019 - June 22, 2019 at All Day
World Refugee Day – June 20, 2019 at 11:00 am - 4:00 pm
The Welcome Table: A Summer Solstice Soiree: a fundraiser for Journey Home Community on World Refugee Day – June 20, 2019 at 6:30 pm - 9:00 pm

June 21, 2019

One Heart B.C. – June 21, 2019 - June 22, 2019 at All Day
Emerging Artist Showcase – June 21, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

June 22, 2019

Teddy Bear Picnic – June 22, 2019 at 10:30 am - 2:00 pm
Candid: An ACTS Seminaries Storytelling Open House – June 22, 2019 at 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
Ember – June 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Marty Franklin Jazz – June 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Somerset Trio – June 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

June 23, 2019

Point Grey Fiesta: Ecumenical Worship Service in the Park – June 23, 2019 at 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Feather Dance: Unveiling Party – June 23, 2019 at 3:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Jazz Vespers in the Valley: Gabriel Hasselbach – June 23, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Taizé Contemplative Service – June 23, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
The Erosion of Freedom: How Transgender Politics in School & Society are Undermining Our Freedom . . . – June 23, 2019 at 6:45 pm - 9:45 pm

June 24, 2019

Iain Provan: The Emperor's New Clothes – Constantine as Old Testament Hero – June 24, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

June 25, 2019

Henry V by William Shakespeare – June 25, 2019 - June 29, 2019 at All Day
Day of the Seafarer – June 25, 2019 at 4:00 pm - 7:00 pm

June 26, 2019

Faculty Roundtable: What the Church Needs to Hear About the Holy Spirit – June 26, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
Tremper Longman: The Beginning of Wisdom – Becoming Wise According to the Bible – June 26, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

June 27, 2019

Business by the Book Breakfast, with Michael Franzese – June 27, 2019 at 8:00 am - 9:30 am
Celebration of the Life & Legacy of Jean Vanier – June 27, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Songs for the Fatherless with Brian Doerksen – June 27, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm

June 28, 2019

Mighty Men's Conference with Angus Buchan & Robin Mark – June 28, 2019 - June 30, 2019 at All Day

June 29, 2019

Platinum Artist Project Playoff Concert – June 29, 2019 at 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm
Fort Night Comedy Presents Saturday Night Improv – June 29, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 11:00 pm
Worship Invasion says . . . HELLO Summer!!! – June 29, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 10:00 pm

June 30, 2019

Canada Day Family Picnic – June 30, 2019 at 11:30 am - 1:30 pm
Party in the Park – June 30, 2019 at 11:30 am - 2:00 pm

July 1, 2019

Mark Buchanan: Pedestrian – Keeping Pace with the Three-Mile-an-Hour God – July 1, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 3, 2019

Chad Wriglesworth: Contemporary Poetry & the Complexities of Human Experience – July 3, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 4, 2019

Agamemnon by Aeschylus – July 4, 2019 - July 6, 2019 at All Day
Burning Ones Conference 2019 : The Convocation – July 4, 2019 - July 6, 2019 at All Day

July 5, 2019

Dean Pinter: The Book of Acts – God's Story & Our Story – July 5, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 6, 2019

Race for the Ridge – July 6, 2019 at 10:00 am - 2:30 pm

July 8, 2019

Kickers Soccer Camp – July 8, 2019 - July 12, 2019 at 9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Flo Soccer Camp – July 8, 2019 - July 12, 2019 at 1:30 pm - 4:30 pm
ROAR: FREE Kids Camp: Life is Wild and God is Good! – July 8, 2019 - July 12, 2019 at 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm
Hymn Festival – July 8, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm
John Walton: Lost World of the Israelite Conquest – July 8, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 10, 2019

Faculty Roundtable: Practicing Hospitality in a Modern Church – July 10, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
James Houston: The Distinctive of Christian Emotions – July 10, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 12, 2019

BC Christian Ashram: Refreshing Revival in Christ Jesus – July 12, 2019 - July 14, 2019 at 12:00 am
Unplanned – July 12, 2019 at All Day

July 13, 2019

Whole Way House: Amazing Race to the Family Picnic – July 13, 2019 at 10:00 am - 3:00 pm

July 15, 2019

Andy Crouch: Putting Technology in its Proper Place – July 15, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 17, 2019

Faculty Roundtable: How Do Stories Shape Our Lives? – July 17, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
Barbara Armacost: Justice, Advocacy & the Redemptive Power of Law – Are We Asking Law to Do Too Much (Or Too Little) in a Broken World? – July 17, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 19, 2019

Film & Faith Evening: The Apostle – July 19, 2019 at 6:45 pm - 9:30 pm

July 20, 2019

Postmodern Urban Spaces: A City Tour – July 20, 2019 at 9:30 am - 1:00 pm

July 24, 2019

Faculty Roundtable: The Impact of N.T. Wright on New Testament Studies – July 24, 2019 at 12:00 pm - 12:45 pm
N.T. Wright: Jesus in Space, Time & History – Natural History & the Challenge of Talking About God – July 24, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

July 28, 2019

Church at Country Fest – July 28, 2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

July 29, 2019

Malcolm Guite: Ordinary Saints – July 29, 2019 at 7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

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