An online AGM, a new opportunity to engage!

An online AGM, a new opportunity to engage!

In May of this year, CCOC President Dallas Alderson told us that the Board had decided to postpone the AGM until September. Optimistically, we hoped an in-person AGM could be an option in September, but distancing requirements remain. We will be hosting our first online AGM this September 17.

At first, the idea of online engagement felt strange. How would you create the connections that we make informally, in person? When COVID-19 first took hold, the appetite for video check-ins and other virtual contact was enormous. There was a great deal of hope that this would be a temporary, albeit illuminating, experience. But now, going into our sixth month of this ‘new normal’, we find some of that appetite has waned.

And why not? Those initial solutions were the best we had on hand. They were always going to be a poor substitute for the real thing, and indeed, we find ourselves looking at old photos from 2019 and getting nostalgic for how simple things once were.

CCOC’s 2019 AGM

But now, in this next chapter, we have an opportunity to re-imagine how we connect with one another. What are the most essential aspects of our social and civil experience, and how do we create those using a combination of in-person and virtual experiences? These are the questions that CCOC’s Neighbours Network will be tackling in the coming months–how do we weave together the social fabric of our neighbourhoods in a physical distancing reality, and with winter looming (sorry to bring it up). If you’re interested in doing this re-imagining with us, please contact Hannah Vlaar at

For me, I’m taking a cue from the interest in this year’s AGM. We have a record number of a possible 15 candidates for this year’s Board election. Isn’t that exciting? Maybe COVID, despite in many ways coming between us, will actually bring us closer together. Maybe COVID activates that part of us that knows we are stronger when we care for one another. That love multiplies, not divides, and in this sense, can overcome even the most structural of challenges.

We invite you to join us on September 17 to celebrate another year at CCOC and a banner year for democratic participation at the Board level. It’s an optimistic sign, yet again, for what is to come.


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