Posts byBarb Briggs

Hospitality – Beyond the Usual Suspects

A Jewish congregation welcomes Syrian Refugees

“…it’s a real gift to people to help alleviate the sense of bitter frustration and depression that comes with feeling helpless while watching a tragedy. This is something that people can do. And you don’t have to have a lot of money to do it. You don’t have to have any special anything. You can just contribute whatever little bit of time or money or energy that you can spare. And you can make a difference. All of us made a difference.”


“It’s about communities making sure all kids get fed. So how do we inspire communities and inspire people to take care of these kids? For us, the act of making a lunch is the platform for inspiring action for social change. It’s not rocket science. Feed kids who are hungry. The impact of that is enormous…”


For the past year, Canadians and the world have eagerly tuned into election events unfolding in the United States. Uncertainty, fear, hostility and frustration have dominated, polarizing and dividing individuals and communities. At the forefront of this unfolding has been the media, in all its various forms, which has brought into question the role of media and storytellers in shaping discussion and thought in society. Questions about focus, responsibility, objectivity and perspective, have come forward along with a sense of forlorn and dissatisfaction with media and storytellers in general.

Creating the Opportunity for Listening

Art of Hosting Training in Calgary, November 8-10

When Matt Mayer first heard about the Art of Hosting during his Masters of Science in Strategic Leadership program, he was skeptical and disinterested.

Having come from a corporate background, Matt found the language used by the Art of Hosting “off-putting and fluffy.” However, over the course of the three-day program organized by his fellow students, Matt changed his perspective and transformed the way he viewed leadership.

Poverty Talked – We Listened

Last week a committed group of poverty activists convened for “Enough,” a Spoken Word Event at the Calgary Public Library’s John Dutton Theatre to mark the United Nations’ International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.

The event featured spoken word performances from Calgarians who intimately understand the impacts of poverty and have an important story to share.

Flourishing Amongst Decline

Amongst Christian religious denominations in Canada, the current narrative is one of decline. Church attendance is down; secularism is on the rise; people are turning away from religion.

Pastors, priests, professors and politicians alike discuss questions such as: Why is it in decline? What is the possible impact? How can it be stopped?

Gathering Music Enthusiasts at the Calgary Folk Music Festival

The Calgary Folk Music Festival runs Thursday July 21 - Sunday July 24

For 4 days in July, Prince’s Island transforms from a quiet, pastoral park into a spirited hub for thousands of music enthusiasts attending the Calgary Folk Music Festival. In its 37th year, the Festival aims to expand the boundaries of what constitutes folk music, while simultaneously drawing people together as a community.

“I have been happily surprised at the enthusiasm of the Calgary community,” says Debbi Salmonsen, who is in her second year as the Executive Director of the Festival and a transplant from Vancouver. When it comes to the music scene, Deb says that Calgary has many things going for it; numerous places to hear music, a supportive music industry, strong support from the City and organizations like Tourism Calgary, as well as the rise of collaborative music initiatives such as the Music Mile and of course the newly opened Studio Bell home of the National Music Centre.

A Relentless Light of Hope

Introducing The Church Agency Collective About Sexual Exploitation (The Collective)

Two pastors walk into a bar…

Yes it’s the cliché start of a bad joke, but it’s not far off from the beginnings of The Church Agency Collective About Sexual Exploitation (The Collective). Dr. Bradley Friesen, a pastor at Centre Street Church and Co-Chair of The Collective, invited a fellow pastor for lunch to talk about social justice.

Music Mile ~ Inglewood

What is true community engagement? Well, it might just look like this…

What started in 2014 as a street-based citizen engagement experiment by Inglewood residents, Bob Chartier and Meg Van Rosendaal, quickly grew into one of the finest stretches of live music venues and events in Calgary – The Music Mile.

2020 Vision for Humanity

ewScoop YYC was honoured to  provide media support for the 2020 Vision of Humanity last month.  If you were not able to attend, please view this short video to get a sense of the vibrancy and diversity of the voices and contributions which were part of the symposium.  NewScoop YYC is very excited to offer

Cafe Koi – A Focus on Third Spaces & Community Hubs

very Thursday, amateur and professional singers alike head to Cafe Koi’s Jazz N’ More open mic night. It’s a fun, and informal evening where singers get a chance to perform alongside jazz musicians in front of a live audience. A tight-knit, welcoming and supportive community has grown over the past seven years, through their shared

What Generative Journalism Sounds like

On February 26, 2015 over 30 participants gathered to learn from Peter Pula, founder and CEO of Axiom News, about Generative Journalism. The poem includes footage filmed during the day and dialogue collected and arranged into a phrase poem by Barb Briggs. It is read by some of the worker members of New Scoop Sarah Arthurs, Naomi Robinson, Simone Lee and Tamara Lee.