School District #34: Abbotsford
Party or Slate (if applicable)
Do you know how much your local government invests in the arts? Would you commit to advocating for an increase in that cultural investment for arts, culture, and heritage in your community, within the capacity of your elected body?
yes I do. I have always advocated for investment in arts, culture and heritage in my community and will continue to do so.
If elected, will you take an active role on behalf of your local government in championing the growth of arts, culture and heritage in your community? Why?
YES - it is imperative to our understanding and appreciate not only our local culture and heritage, but as a growing multi-cultural community with such rich diversity we must all continue to learn more about and celebrate our every expanding diversity.
Students with an education rich in the arts have better grade point averages and are three times more likely to get a degree. Will you commit to making the arts a critical component of every child’s education? If so, how?
yes - we are working hard to do this very thing. Our new BC Curriculum allows much more flexibility for our teachers and students to use whatever means they can connect with, share and demonstrate their learning. The arts and culture connections our students are making through having choice in how they demonstrate what they know has been very exciting to see.
How will your local government maintain or grow its investment in cultural programs in your community?
We have an OCP/strategic plan that outlines our cultural goals and objectives that keeps funding and decision making accountable. As this was created in consultation with the community it is truly representative of what our community wants and needs.
Will you work to ensure access to affordable, sustainable cultural spaces for artists and arts organizations? If so, how?
yes. The City and the School district work together to provide as much access to groups as we can. We continue to protect spaces for the arts even in a very challenging time in terms of available space in our community.
How do you propose to improve cultural tourism in your community?
I believe we have a responsibility to both advertise and educate local and outlying communities about what Abbotsford has to offer in terms of culture and arts programming. Drawing outsiders to our community is part of our plan. We do this by promoting our events in the media, social media, and in advertising in print. We also create tours that showcase and highlight events we have in our community and circulate them.
How do you propose to attract or retain artists and cultural workers in your community?
By promoting and valuing their contributions to our community. By acknowledging and highlighting their work in our schools and communities.
What do you feel is the single most important issue relating to arts, culture, and heritage in your community, and what action will you take to address it?
Performance space is a key issue for us in Abbotsford. We will continue to work on funding the purchase and acquisition of additional performance space that is affordable to everyone.
How do you personally engage in the cultural life of the community? (e.g. involvement on committees, attending arts and culture events, etc.)
In addition to being a participant in many arts and cultural activities, I have been the school district's representative on the Parks, Recreation and Culture Committee of our City for 7 years as an advocate for the students in our schools and community members.