2015/05/21 VIMS Council Minutes

VIMS Council Meeting Minutes

Thursday, May 21st, 2015 at 8:00 p.m.

Brian’s home


June, Sandra, Rod, Bruce, Brian

Absent with Regrets:

No one

 Agenda Items:

  1. Review and Approve Council Meeting Agenda:

Motion from June to approve.


  1. Approve Minutes of Previous Meeting (April 16th, 2015):

Motion from Bruce to approve.

  1. Follow-up to 2015 AGM:
  • Full attendance by all members.
  • The AGM went well and included both reporting and Q&A aspects. Founding members appreciated the opportunity provided by Q&A to be apprised of current events and were active in the discussions.
  • It was suggested that:
    • we should consider hiring for specific tasks if it is challenging to find volunteers to perform them on a consistent basis; and
    • we look at the possibility of reducing our program offerings in order to decrease the workload on both our current volunteer base as well as the VIMS Council.

Council will consider both of these items further.

  • The forms for BC Registry Services, together with a cheque and copy of our annual report will be submitted by Rod.
  • AGM Minutes to be posted on the VIMS website.
  1. Business Arising from the Minutes and Updates:
  • 2017 retreat possibilities – Sandra contacted Andrea Fella and received a response indicating that it is unlikely she will be able to come to conduct a weekend retreat – she is focused on longer retreats that require travel and shorter retreats closer to IRC. A potential invitation to Anna Douglas will be discussed and she can be contacted later in the year.
  • Ajahn Passano was invited by June to conduct a retreat in May 2016 but he responded that he will not be able to come to Victoria. We have a vacancy now for the May retreat date.  Brock and June are in discussion with Ajahn Sona to return to Victoria at this time.
  • Travel costs for Sister Ahimsa (accompanying Ayya Mhedanandi in June): we have been notified that her travel expenses will be covered by others. Motion from June to rescind the decisions made in April to offer $400 to the hermitage to cover her travel expenses and to increase the suggested dana to be $25.  Motion carried.
  • Financial
  • Account Balances on April 30th:

Chequing:       $1,052.82

Savings:         $5,237.32

TOTAL:         $6,290.14

  • A scholarship request was approved and a cheque for $133.10 was sent to Salt Spring Island Vipassana to support this.
  • The budget presented reflects the first 4 months of 2015.
  • June is arranging a meeting for June 7th, 2015 to include a wider group of people as part of the finance team. Motion from June for the council to put word out amongst the sangha to see who might be interested in attending. Carried.
  • Reports and Updates
    • Communications: June has retired from Communications.  Newsletter: Margo has taken over the newsletter production with review backup from Rod, Sandra and Bruce.  Sound: Rod will be doing Ajahn Sona’s retreat and Bruce will likely do the others in the summer.  Bruce will continue to process the retreat talks electronically for posting to the website.  Rod is staging a new site for VIMS – it’s still ‘under wraps’ but as it develops Rod will give the council more feedback about it.
    • Sunday Night sit: Sandra reports that the Sunday night sit organization seems to be running smoothly. Pascal has been updating the website month by month with the facilitators for the coming month. He will be going away in August for a year so we need to find someone to take over this task.  Sandra will take this item to the ‘friends of the Sunday night sit’ meeting that is taking place on June 1st.
    • Beginners’ drop-in: There were four people at the May drop-in session. A few people always show up but numbers are low.  Motion from Sandra to discontinue the beginners’ drop-in.   The council offered thanks to Margo and Brock for keeping this program going for the past two years.  Rod will speak to Margo regarding the council decision and June to inform Brock.
    • Study group:
      • Bruce reported that Heather is interested in keeping the study group going. The number of attendees has fallen this past year and we need to discuss the possibility of modifying this offering in order to simplify VIMS operations. VIMS would like to support Heather and those in our community who are interested in this long-standing program. (NOTE: It was agreed that an investigation into alternative options would include study group members)
      • Bruce to check with Margo for June newsletter that study group information is included.
    • Retreat Registration/Constant Contact setup: Brian and June are sharing the responsibility of setting up information about the retreats in Constant Contact provided by the Retreat Coordinators. This includes: invitation to register email, reminder email, Lost and Found email, Event landing page, registration form, reply to registrants. Brian and June ensure that everything is working correctly before the registration open date.
  • 2015 Programs
    • Ajahn Tiradhammo – July 18/19 2015. Unitarian Church with potluck lunch offering. Ajahn T. will lead a one-day retreat on Saturday July 18 and the Sunday Night sit on July 19.
    • Ayy? Medh?nand?’s visit June 12 – 14th Friday public Talk, Saturday retreat, Sunday evening sit.
    • Confirmed Retreats:
      • May 23/24 Ajahn Sona – Goward House
      • Aug 21 Ajaan Geoff Public talk at Uvic (TBA)
      • Aug 22/23 Ajaan Geoff – UVic Cadboro Commons rooms. Topic: Karma
      • Sept 26/27 Margo McLoughlin – Goward House
      • Nov 7/8 Howard Cohn – Goward House. Topic: TBD (registrar needed)
    • Managers and registrars have been assigned to all 2015 retreats with the exception of Howard Cohn’s retreat – we still need a registrar for this retreat.
  • Interim Council
    • Discussion on both our council roles and the non-council work we do as volunteers for VIMS.
    • Retreat Operations are very important and finding volunteers to coordinate and manage activities.
    • Immediate priorities and tasks. Some discussion.
    • Motion from Rod to have a separate meeting, to include a broader audience, to discuss all that falls into this area – roles, tasks, priorities, etc. Carried.
  • 2016 Retreat Planning (further discussion tabled to next meeting)
    • All retreats are in place for 2016 (as listed below) with the exception of May (reference item #4 above, second point).
      • Jan 16/17 – Heather Martin is confirmed. Bruce will be the coordinator.
      • March 25/26 – Pascal Auclair is confirmed (this is the Easter weekend so the retreat will be on Friday and Saturday). Brock will be the coordinator.
      • May 21/22 – Open.
      • September 17/18 – Steve Armstrong is confirmed. Lawrie will be the coordinator.
      • October 15/16 – Christina Feldman is confirmed. Brock will be the coordinator.
    • 2017 Retreat Planning (further discussion tabled to next meeting)
      • One weekend is available at Goward House in each of: January, March, May, September, October
      • The September weekend might be best for Ajaan Geoff.
    • Meeting adjourned at 9:30 p.m.


Next Meeting

June 18th, 2015
7:00-9:30 p.m.
Sandra’s home