By: Scott Douglas Jacobsen (GNH Community Journalist/Blogger)
Tell us about your brief background – family, education, and work.
I’m from Calgary, Alberta. My family’s small but close. Growing up, I always loved having little family card game nights, dinners, going for walks in Fish Creek Park, and I still love simple dinners and going for walks with my family.
I studied Anthropology and Development Studies (in Calgary), and Integrated Studies in Land and Food Systems (UBC). I love studying and consider myself a life-long learner. Education isn’t just about school, and I learned a lot from the jobs I had while I was in school: I worked at a Drop-In Centre in Calgary and learned about how many of us don’t manage to earn a living even when working as many hours as possible, and then at Immigrant Services, which was eye-opening as I met new Canadian residents, refugees, and Temporary Workers with a huge range of life experience. In Vancouver, I loved learning about bees and pollinators during an Internship at UBC Farm, while I was studying issues of (popular) food culture and how we form our definitions of ‘good’ food.
How did you find out about Gordon Neighbourhood House?
I got connected a bit to other N.H.s during my work with the Think&EatGreen@School Project during my studies at UBC.
What interested you about us?
When I saw Gordon Neighbourhood House was hiring, I thought it looked like a fabulous opportunity. I liked its Food Philosophy, range and scope of projects, and the fact that it was so well connected with so many other organizations and initiatives.
Now, you’re the Community Programmer for Gordon Neighbourhood House. What tasks and responsibilities come with this position?
I see it as being mostly about making connections between people, programs, and resources, to respond to real needs/dreams of our neighbours. I help to connect a lot of great volunteers with opportunities to work on projects they’re interested in, share their skills and talents, and to connect with each other and with other members of the community. I like when volunteers and program participants can learn new things or make connections that help them in their personal and career goals.
Where do you hope Gordon Neighbourhood House moves forward into the future?
I think we’ll keep building on our partnerships to reach more people. I’m excited to see more spaces downtown for Good Food initiatives, and to be involved in animating those spaces and helping to bring awesome people into those spaces so they can do amazing things.