Free Event Starts Social Sustainability Discussion

A panel of experts who specialize in community wellbeing, social innovation, and working with people in need will offer ideas about what it takes to create a vibrant, inclusive community where everyone can thrive.

A free panel discussion called Thriving or Surviving: What is a socially sustainable community? will be presented Thursday, March 15, from 7:00 – 8:30pm in the Langley Events Centre Banquet Hall, at 7888 – 200 Street. To reserve seats, visit

Presented by the Township of Langley, the event will kick off the preparation of the Township’s Social Sustainability Strategy, which will help guide the municipality’s actions on social issues such as housing, public safety, health and wellness, and food security in the years ahead.

“This is an exceptional place to live, work, learn, and play, but not everyone in our community is thriving,” said Township of Langley Strategic/Social Planner Patrick Ward. “Social issues like homelessness, substance abuse, and poverty are not just big city challenges. We need to work together to ensure all our residents can enjoy the best quality of life possible.”

Members of the community are encouraged to attend the free panel discussion, which will explore key elements of social sustainability and help provide initial ideas for the Strategy, which will be prepared over the next two years with input from the public.

Frances Bula, Urban Affairs Contributor for the Globe and Mail, will moderate the panel, which includes: Jill Zacharias, Social Development Coordinator for the City of Revelstoke; Mary Ellen Schaafsma, Director of Social Innovation and Research at the United Way of the Lower Mainland; Meg Holden, Associate Professor of Urban Studies and Geography at Simon Fraser University; and Stephen D’Souza, Executive Director of Burnaby Community Services. Questions will be taken from the audience following the panel discussion.

For more information, contact or 604-533-6034.

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