PRESIDENT'S MESSAGE

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Mon, 11/02/2015 - 02:45 -- Admin

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At the MGABC AGM which was held in Victoria at the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific I mentioned that 2015 will be my last year as your president. The past three years have been enjoyable, a learning experience, sometimes worrying, sometimes a laugh and always an honour. I have made some good friends over the years who, without their help and dedication, we could not have achieved all that has been done.

We have finished laying the ‘bones’ of the association. We have worked to create partnerships with Seeds of Diversity and Invasive Species Council of BC - as my two pet projects. You may ask why these two when there aremany worthy causes out there. I picked Seeds of Diversity as it is based on the premise that it is very important to keep diversity in our food system, and that we need to keep a variety of seeds, organic, natural and non-GMO. The partnership with the ISCBC provides a way to educate ourselves and the public about invasive plants and alternatives that can be used in our gardens – and thus protect our environment.

We have continued the work on communication for all members. We have upgraded our website and hope the new brighter look and feel, the easy drop down menus and more member security will be enjoyed by all. I hope that all members will learn to use the website to keep up to date with events that are happening in their local chapters, around the province and to share information with all.

I believe there is a great potential for our organization. We have so much to offer each other and our communities. I also believe the organization is more than just our own community or chapter – I know how hard itis to remember we are all part of a larger province wide organization when in the midst of our own local events.We are actually part of a much larger movement – the MG movement has been around for over 30 years. There are amultitude of associations and groups across North America. There are local, national and international MG conferences held across the US and Canada. The next Canadian Conference is being held in April 2016 and sponsored by the Ontario Master Gardeners. To find more information check out their website – mgoi.ca.

Thank you for your continued support and more importantly your participation - for without it our organization would not thrive and grow.

Lynne Chrismas, MGABC President

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It has been months since I last wrote to everyone and I do apologize for that. I have thought of all I want to tell you but I never seem to get it written before something new comes up. With the arrival
of spring we are reminded that it is the time of reflection, rejuvenation and rebirth. Now at the end
of April here in the lower mainland the trees are all in leaf, the cherry trees and pieris are almost finished and the last weekend was warm enough to start thinking of planting seed.

Your council met in March at VanDusen Botanical Garden. At that time we approved Trine Helsoe, Prince George Representative as Treasurer for the Association until the next AGM. We also welcomed Christianne Hirt as the new Prince George Chapter Representative to replace Trine. This leaves only one open position of President Elect on council.

Another piece of good fortune for the Association was the letter received from the Vancouver Chapter waiving the $5,000. balance owed to them. Other items of discussion were the partnership with the ISCBC, supporting Seeds of Diversity, the different manuals used by the chapters, the next AGM and how to share more information with the chapters. The Communication Committee has been given the go ahead to do some upgrading on the MGABC website.

It was decided that a summary of the meetings be done for the chapter representatives to forward to their members. Victoria confirmed that they will host the 2015 AGM and Prince George has offered to host 2016. The date for next AGM is September 27 and will be held at the Horticulture Centre of the Pacific, near Victoria. Please plan to attend and watch for more information to come from your chapter representative.

Another exciting event that I have heard about through a Canadian MG group is the Canadian Master Gardener Conference to be held April 8-10, 2016 in Huntsville, Ontario. This conference is in the early planning stages and sounds very interesting. There are Canadian MG Awards of Excellence to be presented during the conference. These awards are to recognize the outstanding projects that demonstrate excellence in the delivery of MG services to the public and are open to all chapters and groups of MGs across Canada. I will forward more information on the conference and the awards as I get it from the organizers.
I hope everyone has a chance to enjoy the many projects, workshops, clinics, tours and other events
taking place over the next couple of months, and hope you will share some of the activities through the website. Wishing everyone a happy spring!

Lynne Chrismas
MGABC – President
May 11, 2015

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For the Annual General Meeting we went to Kelowna on September 21.   It was a joint effort between the Okanagan and Thompson Shuswap Chapters and I’d like to thank the members for all their work.  For those who attended it was an enjoyable weekend.  There was a private garden tour, followed with a couple wineries and then dinner at one of them.    

The lectures on Sunday were interesting and enjoyable and the floral displays were impressive.   The main business portion of the AGM was for the election of officers.  I have the honor of being the president for another term.   I would like to thank the council members who finished their terms and a welcome to the new members joining the provincial council.

 I want to offer congratulations to Linda Derkach and Sally Shivers, both from Vancouver Island Chapter, as joint recipients of the Golden Trowel Award for service and dedication to the MGABC.  And an honorable mention to Elaine Scott of Victoria Chapter for her service to the chapter and her community.      

The new council held their first meeting in November.  It was an all-day meeting when we will be setting the council priorities and the working budget, organizing committees and duties for the next year.  The council calendar is also updated with skype meetings and other events and deadlines such as filing government reports.  The first meeting is also when the new council members get the Council Manual and orientation as to the workings of the council.  There is also a bit of history passed on how about the evolution of the society – how we have evolved from a group of volunteer gardeners to a registered charity society which has similar rules and government regulations to follow, just as if it was a business.    

I ask that each chapter continue developing the partnership with Invasive Species council and supporting Seeds of Diversity.  I would like to thank everyone for their participation and support of the CBC radio segments but, sadly CBC has decided to put this project on hold for a while.     With your continued support we will continue to ‘grow our garden’  

- thank you.       Lynne Chrismas MGABC President

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