Heart Gabriola Triumph

Gabriola: Together we Triumph – a new $273,000 community grant awarded to celebrate, reconnect and prepare for a resilient future together.

Gabriola: Together We Triumph is a dynamic celebration honouring our community for their resilience. COVID-19 showed us very quickly we are a vulnerable community and the best way to commemorate and celebrate is to learn from our experiences. We are the Isle of the Arts, a rural island community that relies on the kindness of neighbours and the hive mind.

We have taken a holistic approach to this grant. We want something meaningful for our community, we don’t do statues and we don’t need a garden. Our objective is to prepare ourselves for the next pandemic (we were going to ask for a warehouse of toilet paper), the next climate event, the next unknown, and we plan to do this through food, economy, art, music, culture and gratitude.

The project is multi-faceted; it is supporting community building, while commemorating what happened to us and celebrating our resilience as Canadians.

The project ranges from community education around food security, to Heritage Skills classes providing valuable instructions essential to island living, climate adaptations and resiliency building. Celebrating and promoting businesses who provided for all of us during these strange times coupled with essential skills service providers can share, to Elders and Youth exchanging stories through art. Documenting community pandemic stories with a physical installation at the Museum, a digital version for wider distribution, culminating in a commemorative book for every household. All wrapped up in monthly celebrations honouring the aspects of what helped this community survive through COVID-19. Celebrations will range from art shows to blues shows, poetry readings to preschool ballerinas, centered around community and creating additional economic stimulus.

Each piece recognizes what happened, what we learned, and where we need to be for next time. It is very Canadian.

Triumph is a program funded by a grant from the Department of Canadian Heritage and the Federal Government of Canada.