2015/10/15 VIMS Council minutes

VIMS Council Meeting Minutes (approved)

Thursday, October 15, 2015 at 7:00 p.m.

Brock and June’s home


June, Sandra, Bruce, Rod, Brock Brown (guest), Isabelle House (guest)

Absent with Regrets:

Brian was away.

Agenda Items:

  1. Review and Approve Council Meeting Agenda:

Motion from June to approve the agenda with an amendment of a short discussion on 2018 retreat planning.  Carried.

  1. Approve Minutes of Previous Meeting (September 17th, 2015):
  • There were no changes to the distributed draft minutes from the September council meeting.

Motion from Sandra to approve the minutes. Carried.

  1. Business arising from the Minutes:

There was no business arising from the September minutes.

  1. Reports and Updates  
    • Financials:
      • June presented the Treasurer’s report.
      • Month-end September 2015 report from Bookkeeper Wei Wu.
      • Account Balances on September 30th, 2015:

Chequing: $2,109.63

Savings: $3,748.53

TOTAL: $5,858.16

Motion from June to accept the financial report. Carried.

      • The budget for extraneous retreat costs was re-confirmed:

$20.00 general (e.g. flowers, photocopies, etc.)

$20.00 per day for teacher retreat lunch

Motion from June to accept the costs reconfirmation.  Carried.

        • June and Wei are working on a budget for 2016.  June will invite Wei to attend the next council meeting to help present the budget.
      • Communications:    
        • Website: Bruce reported that the website is up to date.
        • Gmail: We are looking for someone to take over the monitoring of the VIMS email as Sandra will be stepping back from this at the end of the year.  Sandra to contact David re him possibly assuming this responsibility.
        • Newsletter: June created a draft plan/schedule for the creation and distribution of the newsletter for the period October 2015 to November 2016. The draft was distributed to council prior to the meeting and has been reviewed and approved.
        • Sound: Bruce reported that the sound was excellent for the last retreat (Margo’s) using the new speaker and stands.


  • Retreat Operations:


        • Margo’s retreat at the end of September went smoothly. 53 people registered; 44 were expected; 36 attended the first day and 32 the second.  Thanks to all volunteers who assisted with set-up and close on the retreat days and to the co-managers Sandra Joy and Carol Eby, Registrar Brian Chapel and Sound/Recording Bruce MacRae.  
        • Isy gave a report on retreat planning and provided council with the latest schedule for 2016. The schedule was discussed and some changes are required.  Isy will update the schedule and it will be posted to VIMS Google Docs (Rod will set this up) for group access. Isy went through the process for notifying the team members (responsible for a retreat) ahead of a retreat and the documentation that needs to be distributed.  She will document this process and make it available to council. Council accepted Isy’s recommendations for establishing the chain of command that determines the retreat teams (coordinators, managers and registrars). Council appreciates Isy and Joyce (backup) taking the lead in establishing the retreat teams and setting up related mentoring/training opportunities for 2016 and ongoing.
        • The written instructions for the Registrar and Manager have been updated by June and will also be uploaded to VIMS Google Docs for group access.


  • Sunday Sit:


      • Attendance at the Sunday night sit were down during the summer and fall.
      • Arinna Weisman will facilitate the Sunday sit on November 29th, 2015.  The coordinator to welcome Arinna.  Sandra to mention this to Margo.
      • Sandra to check with Margo re Heather Martin facilitating in December and to discuss the possibility of setting up target dates for her facilitation in 2016 (4 or less – we have a budget for 4). The Sunday night organizing group when planning Heather’s facilitation should take into account the retreat schedule for 2016 and also the potential for synchronizing the study group with the facilitation dates.
    • Other:
      • Options for obtaining new council members continue to be discussed.
  • Planning:
    • Remaining events 2015:
      • Nov 6 – Howard Cohn – Friday evening talk at the Helga Beer yoga studio entitled “Letting go into the Present” – Brock and Sandra will provide operations support.  June will ensure a single email to go out to our mailing list on the Monday/Tuesday of the week of the event.
      • Nov 7/8 Howard Cohn – two day retreat at Goward House entitled “A view as wide as the sky” – Brock Coordinator – Lawrie Registrar – one of the co-managers has had to withdraw and Brock has  found a replacement.


All operations roles and tasks related to the above retreats are in place.

    • 2016 Retreat planning: Registration open dates established as follows:
      • Heather Martin – Jan 16/17 – Coordinator Bruce – registration opens 14th December, 2015
      • Margo McLoughlin February 20 – one day – Coordinator Sandra – registration opens January 25th, 2016
      • Pascal Auclair – Mar 25/26 – Friday and Saturday (Easter) – Coordinator Brock – registration opens February 29th, 2016
      • Ajahn Sona – May 20 – public talk (with Margo Jataka tales) – details TBD (Sandra to confirm with Margo and obtain information on format)
      • Ajahn Sona – May 21/22 – June Coordinator – registration opens April 25th, 2016
      • Steve Armstrong – Sept 17/18 – Coordinator Lawrie – registration opens August 22nd, 2016
      • Christina Feldman – Oct 15/16 – Coordinator Joyce – registration opens September 19th, 2016
      • Brock Brown – Nov 13 – one day – Coordinator TBD registration opens October 17th, 2016

Registration open date information to be sent to Isy, Margo, Brian and Bruce for their scheduling of retreat operations and communications.     

    • 2017 Retreat Planning:
      • The following dates are pencilled in for Goward House for 2017.  We await confirmation from Goward House:  

Jan 21/22; Mar 18/19; May 27/28; Sept 16/17; Nov 11/12

        • Tentatively the following has been suggested:


  • Jan 21/22 – Heather – Bruce to discuss with Heather
  • May 27/28 – Ayya Medhanandi – Brock to confirm
  • August 19/20 – Ajaan Geoff – Uvic – June and Brock to confirm
  • Other teachers to be approached:  


        • Ajahn Sona (timing TBD – June and Brock to discuss with Ajahn Sona),
        • Steve Armstrong (timing TBD – Lawrie to discuss with Steve)
        • A senior teacher from Spirit Rock (TBD).  
        • Tuere (Seattle – Brock to discuss with her)
        • Local teachers to be considered in the schedule include Brock and Margo.
        • Ajahn Tiradhammo may be in BC in the summer of 2017.  


  • 2018 Retreat Planning:


      • Brock spoke to Carol Wilson about the possibility of her conducting a retreat in Victoria during 2017 and she is already fully committed.  She suggested perhaps coming in 2018.  The council agreed that Brock should continue the conversation with Carol and look at potential dates for her for 2018.


  1. Meeting adjourned at 9:10 p.m.

Next Meeting

December 10th, 2015
Sandra’s home

(Note: the above meeting will cover off both November and December)