Program

Expect an interactive, engaging and challenging conference where you learn, share and connect. There will be a wide range of workshops, open space type sessions, outdoor and experiential activities, pre-conference experiences, displays, a bookstore, all with a healthy touch of magic and inspiration. This will be a bilingual conference with simultaneous translation for keynotes and an offering of English and French workshops.img_0206

Wolfville is a spectacular setting on the Minas Basin with the highest tides in the world lapping up to the edge of Front Street. It is unceded Mi’kmaw territory and it looks across to a magnificent view of Cape Blomidon. The conference is centred at Acadia’s K.C. Irving Environmental Sciences Centre and the Harriet Irving Botanical Gardens. The six acres of gardens are solely devoted to native plants and organized by Acadian bioregion ecosystems. Just out the garden gate are a couple of kilometers of woodland trails, which will be integrated into the conference program.

Audience

See Change is for anyone interested in facilitating environmental and sustainability learning in a wide range of settings, including in schools and post-secondary institutions, communities,  the outdoors, and non-profit, government and business organizations. In addition, there will be special program for high school youth and activities for children.

Conference Themes

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  • The Big Four (Food, Water, Waste and Energy): How can we educate with respect to issues of food, waste, water, oceans, energy, inequity and climate? How can we best facilitate environmental learning, literacy and citizenship, be it in the classroom, the natural world or the community?
  • Indigenous Perspectives: How can indigenous worldviews facilitate environmental and educational change? How can indigenous knowledges be supported and integrated into the culture of environmental education?
  • Sustainable Communities: How can we promote and facilitate environmental learning as a tool that is integrated into lifestyles, livelihoods and communities?
  • Outdoor Active Living: How can we promote, facilitate and use outdoor learning activities as a pathway to wellness and sustainable lifestyles?
  • Research and Policy: Share and discuss current research. How can we bring together and mobilize stakeholders to foster change at systems levels based on current knowledge?
  • Re-Connecting with Nature: How can we best facilitate young and old to spend more time appreciating, understanding and caring for the natural world?

Core Values

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  • Engaging:Environmental learning must be inspiring, interactive, dynamic and evidence-based if it is to be a powerful tool in fostering individual, community and social change. We will emphasize interactive experiences, time in the outdoors and mutual collaboration and sharing.
  • Community: People learn best in a welcoming, diverse and sharing community. It is a challenging but extremely rich learning to work across diversity, and this is a challenge we embrace and set as a criteria for the conference.
  • Magic: Magic can be the small surprise or caring gesture, an engaging story or touching gift, bringing beauty and nature to the forefront, be it inside or out. Many small things based on thoughtfulness, planning and beauty will integrate into a memorable and holistic experience. Expect the unexpected, expect the arts to interconnect with the sciences as we dance with diverse cultures and approaches.
  • Walk the Talk: The gap between what we say we believe in, and what we do, is large in society, be it about sustainability, health, diversity, or inclusion. It is our core value to reduce this gap, and to be transparent about our decisions and practices so that we can embrace the challenges of others who seek alternative paths.
  • Managing Risk: We embrace risk as a powerful tool for learning, be it physical risk in outdoor activities and play, or emotional risk in well-crafted experiences or the social risk in working across diversity. Thus we take responsibility for thinking ahead and managing these risks to provide for and respect individual needs and make responsible choices.