Cultural groups should work together

Resident calls for cooperation among cultural agencies

Over the last 30 years, I have done  community development work with dozens of community organizations in many different communities throughout B.C.

I have worked with social, legal, cultural, housing, sports and educational organizations. I also spent almost a year doing community development work with non-profits in Ukraine.

There is one universal truth that I have learned over the 30 years doing community development work: that communities and organizations that work together towards a common goal can accomplish much more, and often at a much lower cost, than those that go it alone.

Like most universal truths, this one is pretty much a no-brainer. However, there is something else that happens when organizations work together, that is also described by a universal truth: the whole becomes greater than the sum of its individual parts.

There is a synergy that happens when groups of people work together towards a common goal. They build momentum, share ideas and often come up with new and unusual solutions to problems.

I have lived in Vernon for the last 16 years, and have been involved in developing projects with both the Greater Vernon Museum and the Vernon Public Art Gallery. I served as acting executive director for the art gallery for a period of seven months while it was restructuring.

I also facilitated a strategic planning process for the Caetani Arts Centre. I have been involved to a lesser extent with the Vernon Community Arts Centre, having taken classes and my daughter having taught there on occasion.

While I was with the public art gallery, we had discussions with the museum about the possibilities of the art gallery moving into the library space and expanding the buildings together to meet joint needs. While this didn’t happen, as the city took over the library space, I still believe there is great merit in the public art gallery, museum and potentially the arts centre working together on a capital building project.

There is quite a bit of overlap of needs with the museum, public art gallery and arts centre.

All have somewhat similar needs in regards to exhibition space, maintenance, environmental controls, general and archival storage, lighting, cleaning, education, public outreach, events, advertising, accounting local fundraising and gift shop. Many of their community members and volunteers are involved with more than one of these organizations.

I think I speak for many in the community when I say that although I support arts and culture in Vernon, I would not be able to support any financial initiative that did not involve these groups working together towards a common building project. I would also like to see any future building project also look at including possible affordable housing and studio space for young and/or emerging artists.

I truly believe that if these organizations worked together to develop a shared facility, this would not only benefit the community, but each of the organizations themselves. I also know that there are many more grants and financial opportunities for groups that work in partnership, which could help ease the demand on our local taxpayers.


Maurie Deaton




Just Posted

For 52 people, it really is home for the holidays in Vernon

New My Place residential facility has occupants celebrating holidays in stable environment

Vernon community radio station inching closer to going on-air

Application to be put on public hearing agenda, likely in the spring.

Penticton Vees earn split with Vernon Vipers

Vees victorious 4-1 at home in back end of home-and-home series

North Okanagan Knights blanked in East Kootenays

Knights drop pair of KIJHL games in Fernie and Kimberley; lost five straight

Legendary primatologist to speak in Vernon

Dame Jane Goodall, founder of the Jane Goodall Institute, will present at VPAC Tuesday, March 24

VIDEO: Success of wildlife corridors in Banff National Park has advocates wanting more

Demand for more highway protection escalated after seven elk were killed by a semi-trailer near Canmore

In Photos: CP Rail Holiday Train lights up the Shuswap

The stop on the train’s Canada-wide journey came with a $5,500 donation to local food bank.

B.C. VIEWS: Hunger does not end with the season

Despite innovations in food distribution, the need is still there in B.C. communities

Kelowna RCMP officer allegedly sexts assault victim

RCMP confirm investigation but hold back details

Old Christmas card has ties to Summerland agriculture

Card was sent by former director of Summerland Research Station

Sharks beat Canucks 4-2 to snap 6-game skid

Vancouver visits Vegas on Sunday

Fans sing Canadian anthem after sound system breaks at BMW IBSF World Cup

The Canadians in attendance made sure their team and flag were honoured on the podium

Prince George RCMP use bait packages to catch porch pirates over the holidays

First-in-Canada program with Amazon looks to combat parcel theft

WATCH: Fire destroys Big White Ski Resort chalet

Social media eulogies peg the property, nicknamed “The Pharamacy,” as both loved and hated

Most Read