The Victoria Health Co-op Monthly Update

By Vanessa Hammond

Let’s start with two questions and a hint:

  • Do you like meeting friends for coffee?

  • Would it be helpful for the Co-op to make Nurse Practitioner services available through partner organizations?

  • The hint - who controls YOUR medical records?

First, the Co-op Cafés

Thanks to the hard work of Victoria Health Co-op Member-Owner Bruce Livingston, and the support of the City of Victoria, we have organized a series of “Co-op Cafés”. At each event, we meet the passionate people who are member-owners and leaders of a co-op in our community. We learn about co-ops in general - enterprises set up to meet the mutual needs of the member-owners, rather than to maximize profit for a few shareholders. We will hold one Café most months, two sometimes, mainly downtown Victoria or in James Bay.

Snacks and door prizes are always part of these events! We have co-hosted with Coastal Community Credit Union - what an outstanding range of services from this island-focused credit union! Our second co-host is WIN, the Women In Need Co-operative which runs a wide range of services in four locations to help women move from being at risk to being financially secure and able to look confidently to the future. Upcoming co-hosts include MODO, Coast Capital Credit Union, Real English Victoria, the Co-op Housing Federation, Vancity, and Peninsula Co-op. We have also invited and are in discussion with Viridian Energy Co-operative, Adrenalin Motorcyle Co-op, MEC and The Co-operators with more in our sights. At each event we will have the calendar of upcoming Cafés and opportunities for you to ask questions and get the conversation started.

Please email or call us with your suggestions of co-ops you want us to invite or to suggest topics for discussion – anything about co-ops and how we contribute to our communities. For all dates, locations, and information on the co-hosts for these Cafés, check our program listings at or visit our Facebook page. Not online? Please call us at 250.415.9272 or leave a note for the Co-op at the front desk of the James Bay Community Project.

Health and Wellness Developments

To continue sharing exciting news, we are pleased to discuss upcoming Nurse Practitioner services. Thanks to the hard work of the B.C. Association of Community Health Centres, we have received “transitional” funding and will be able to hire a part time Nurse Practitioner. We are in conversation with a number of potential partners about where this NP would establish a practice and support wellness education. We are working to coordinate this service with the outstanding care already being provided by the wellness practitioners of the Victoria Health Co-op. Stay tuned for updates near the end of the year and heading into 2019.

While we have your mind on health services, we also want to ask you about a new idea. Do you feel you have adequate access to your personal medical record? Would you be interested in better access and in being able to add your own comments to your record? Please let us know what you think.

How you can help the VHC

Let us know your ideas about what services the Victoria Health Co-op should be providing and please share how you would like to help make it happen. What expertise and energy can you contribute?

Also, a reminder: this is a great time to make a donation to the Creating Community Wellness Society. For such a donation, you will receive a charitable donation receipt to include with your income tax return, meaning that giving more costs you less! Ask your accountant for details of the eligible donations for charitable tax receipts. Coast Capital Credit Union has forms for pre-authorized debits if you’d prefer to give on a regular basis, or you can leave a cheque at the James Bay Community Project, 547 Michigan Street or give Dylan, our Treasurer, your donation in person at our upcoming Co-op Cafés. Thanks to the generosity of artist Chris Paul and his partner Dr Krista Stogryn, we are able to offer a signed, numbered print of Chris’ beautiful “Our Gift” in recognition of major donations.

Email our Chair, Vanessa, at or call 250.415.9272 for more information.

MLA Report

Points North: It's Your Choice