Who we are
Community • Resilience • Climate
Transforming to a just, sustainable society
Transition Sooke is a citizen-based, volunteer, public-interest group focused on co-creating a sustainable, resilient and secure community that meets the challenges of the climate emergency in the Sooke region.
How we do it
Transition Sooke acts as a resource and builds awareness with the Sooke community and with different levels of government to develop creative solutions to sustainability and climate change. Transition Sooke holds virtual and in-person workshops and town halls; makes presentations to Council and its committees; publishes stories and posts in mainstream and social media; develops educational resources; hosts a website and Facebook page; and sends out a monthly newsletter.
Transition Sooke’s members and supporters, who come from diverse backgrounds and experiences, work together co-operatively and democratically to create positive change. Transition Sooke supports and collaborates with other groups and individuals that share its concerns and values.
Transition Sooke believes that the transformation to a new society must not leave anyone behind. Climate and sustainability initiatives and policies need to be just, fair and equitable.
Members of Transition Sooke meet regularly either in-person or online and share progress on ongoing initiatives, discuss new actions, and find out what other relevant activities are going on in the community.
What we do
Transition Sooke has specific initiatives:
- Climate emergency – addresses both our need to reduce greenhouse gases and adapt to the changing climate. It includes the following action teams:
- Green energy for commercial and residential buildings
- Fossil-fuel free transportation and infrastructure
- Divestment from fossil fuels
- Building a local economy
- Self-sufficient and secure local food and agriculture
- Rainwater harvesting
- Official Community Plan (OCP) and Climate Action
- Addressing climate angst
- Pesticide Education – builds awareness of pesticides and their alternatives
- Sooke Multi-Belief Initiative – a working group from diverse religious, ethical and spiritual traditions that focuses on the moral, spiritual, emotional and social needs of the Sooke community.
- Zero Waste Sooke – educates the public and the next generation on waste reduction following the 5Rs of the international Zero Waste movement — Refuse, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Rot in that order. Runs the popular Repair Cafés
- A number of organizations got their start with the support of Transition Sooke and went on to operate independently. One such example is Wild Wise Sooke, a wildlife education group that promotes coexistence between the Sooke community and our wild neighbours.
Where we came from
Transition Sooke is part of a worldwide network called Transition Towns, which was founded in Totnes, England in 2005. In 2011, Sooke became the 346th community to be recognized by the Transition Network.
Download a one-page info sheet on Transition Sooke here.
The Sooke Transition Town Society (Transition Sooke) was incorporated under the Society Act of BC on Aug. 18, 2011 following two years of preparatory work by John Boquist, Margaret Critchlow, Andrew Moore and Michael Tacon.
The name of the Society is Sooke Transition Town Society.
The purposes of the Society are:
- To raise awareness of sustainable living opportunities in the Sooke Region
- To build local resilience in anticipation of climate change, peak oil and economic uncertainty and inequity
- To begin the transition from a carbon intensive lifestyle to a powered down way of living using less non renewable resources
- To offer educational programming to inform the community
- To contribute to community cohesion and resilience by working in cooperation and collaboration with existing groups and organizations
- To provide similar and related services as determined by the membership
At the moment, Transition Sooke is using the model bylaws provided by the Societies Branch of the Provincial Government (1996 version). We have revised our bylaws to create a set of streamlined bylaws that are consistent with the Act (minimum requirement) and truly represent the kind of organization we are. The revised bylaws have been submitted to Societies Branch and we await approval.
Transition Sooke has developed policies to guide us in a more detailed way than in the bylaws. Policies are more easily changed than bylaws, which have to be formally changed at an General Meeting. We are in the process of revising the following polices :
- Membership policy (passed May 6, 2020 General Meeting)
- Decision-Making Policy (Revised August 5, 2020 General Meeting)
- Financial Procedures Policy (Passed August 5, 2020)
- To build on local knowledge, skills and resources to make Sooke a more resilient community.
- To promote the local economy, food security and alternative energy sources for present and future generations.
- To create a vibrant community where we can work, live and play, where we can feel secure and at home.
Original statement of intent from 2011: The Sooke Transition Town Society, aka Transition Sooke, is a local group of concerned volunteer residents committed to working together with existing groups to make Sooke a more resilient and sustainable community. We do so in order to respond more effectively to the challenges of climate change, peak oil, and global economic instability and inequity.
Sooke already has a remarkably strong community spirit that’s given focus by a range of solidly established working groups and organizations. Transition Sooke is uniquely positioned to explore the creative possibilities of local collaborative action with these groups and others to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, offshore food supplies, imported goods and the increasingly unstable global financial system.
What have we done? Transition Sooke has focused its start-up efforts on awareness raising, education and community engagement under its own name and via its working groups Zero Waste Sooke, Permaculture Sooke, Bike Sooke, our multi-belief initiative and Wild Wise Sooke (for whom we serve as fiscal host).
How to get involved? Write us and ask! All welcome as we build teams & slowly, steadily, patiently develop still more community connectivity in the Sooke region.
- Inquire about volunteer opportunities with our working groups
- Attend a meeting and share your ideas and passions.
- Join a working group, or we can help you start and manage one.
Our beautiful, striking and wonderfully apt (for Sooke by the Sea) “hills to harbour” logo was designed by the late East Sooke artist Kay Lovett.