Play, for the health of it

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Wednesday, January 23 2019

On January 30, from 9am till Noon, Gabriolans are invited to get wet, get loud, get dirty, and get active. 

To play.

The Gabriola Health and Wellness Collaborative will be holding it’s third annual meeting and workshop, this time at the Gabriola Island Community Hall - with the theme of “Play for All. A Playful Community is a Healthy Community.”

There will be a general meeting of the Collaborative for updates on accomplishments, awards, and projects. 

As well as keynote presentations by two UBC Okanagan scholars on how incorporating elements of play into our daily lives can ensure Gabriola is a vibrant, healthy community for all ages.

Followed by some actual play time - for everyone attending.

Families and children are welcome to attend. Child care will be available.

The keynote speakers are Dr. Beverlie Dietze, who will present on Outdoor Play: Creating Wonder in Childhood that Lasts a Lifetime; and Dr. Sharon McCoubrey, who will present on Art as Play.

Dr. Beverlie Dietze is the Director of Learning and Applied Research at Okanagan College. She has been the lead researcher on two national projects on outdoor play, an author of many peer-reviewed articles, co-author of five early childhood education textbooks, including the latest released text Outdoor and Nature Play in Early Childhood Education, and a national presenter on a variety of topics related to early childhood and adult education.

Dr. Sharon McCoubrey is the Coordinator of Community Engagement for the Faculty of Education at UBC Okanagan. She obtained her Bachelor of Education and Master of Education Degrees from the University of Victoria and her Doctorate Degree from UBC, all in art education. She has been the recipient of several Excellence in Art Education Awards, and has also been presented with the Order of Lake Country for her work in Public Art, a BC Achievement Award, and the UBC Outstanding Faculty Award for excellence in professional and community work. Sharon’s areas of research include many aspects of art education and public art, teacher education, intergenerational learning, early learning, and aboriginal education.

After the speakers, the ‘play’ begins.

Stations will be setup for attendees to apply the concepts of play which they’ve just heard from Dr. Dietze and Dr. McCoubrey.

Whether it’s making noise, getting physical, building up towers, or trying to ride a skateboard, participants will be invited to get creative in their play with different activities.

The Collaborative is a collaboration of Gabriolan groups and individuals who came together after a public forum started in October 2015.

In November of 2017, the Collaborative hosted the second forum, focusing on the social determinants of health. Dr. Paul Hasselback, Chief Medical Officer with Island Health (VIHA) was the keynote speaker for that forum.

The Hub is made up of several participants from Collaborative who meet monthly to act on the Collaborative objectives, and to plan events and communicate with Collaborative members.

The Collaborative is funded by The Rural Division of Family Practice.

This workshop is free, drop in, and everyone is welcome.