Find an article

You are searching our free catalogue of free online articles.
Subscribe to our monthly newspaper for full access to the paper premium content.

Category: Community

Elephant’s feet crosswalks

Some communities in B.C. have special crosswalks. They are called “elephant’s feet” crosswalks. They help keep people on bikes and pedestrians stay safe when crossing the road. What do they look like? Elephant’s feet crosswalks have two lines of white squares. The squares look like an elephant’s footprint. Sometimes there is a bicycle symbol between…

Community
Continue Reading

Tax time help

  It’s tax time. Do you need help filing your tax return? Volunteers can help you at a free tax clinic. They can help people who have no income or low income. You can get help if: your income is less than $35,000 for one person. your income is less than $50,000 for a family…

Community
Continue Reading

March Break staycation tips

This March Break take a staycation. A staycation is a stay-at-home vacation. You can do fun things in your own town or city. You can save money on travel, airfare or hotels. Here are some staycation tips. Free activities  Look for free concerts, movies, festivals and fairs in your community. Check online or visit your…

Community Family
Continue Reading

Let’s celebrate Literacy Month

In B.C., we celebrate Literacy Month. Literacy is important to everyone. This year’s theme is “Literacy connects us!” Enter the Literacy Month Photo Contest: Take a photo of yourself doing one of the activities from the calendar below. Send your entry to contest@decoda.ca or post to Facebook.com/decodaliteracy or Twitter @decodaliteracy. Use the hashtag #Connect4Lit23. Enter…

Community
Continue Reading

B.C. Wildfires

Every year, there are hundreds of wildfires in B.C. Wildfires destroy homes, buildings and land. They can kill people and animals. What causes wildfires?   Lightning strikes cause 60 per cent of wildfires. People start the other 40 per cent. How do I stay safe during a wildfire? Listen for instructions from the B.C. Government….

Community Nature
Continue Reading

Farmers’ markets

Farmers’ markets in B.C. are opening up for the season. They offer a wide variety of things to buy, including fresh fruits, vegetables, jewelry, music and much more. What is a farmers’ market? For hundreds of years, farmers sold their food at open markets.  Before towns had grocery stores, these markets were the only way to…

Community Food
Continue Reading

Peace by Chocolate

Peace by Chocolate is a chocolate company. It is owned by the Hadhad family. The Hadhad family had a chocolate factory in Syria. A bomb destroyed the factory. The family left Syria. They lived in a refugee camp in Lebanon for three years. A new life in Canada In 2016, the Hadhad family moved to…

Business Community
Continue Reading

Become a Library Champion

The Library Champions Project is a volunteer program in many public libraries in B.C. It is for people who are new to Canada. It is three months long. What do volunteers learn? Library Champions go to four training sessions. They learn about library, settlement and community services. They also work on communication, presentation and outreach…

Community
Continue Reading

New language added to B.C. Newcomers’ Guide

B.C. is welcoming people from Ukraine to communities across the province. The B.C. Newcomers’ Guide is now available in Ukrainian. The guide has information to help newcomers settle in B.C. They can learn about how to: find a place to live drive in B.C. find a doctor and other medical services get a B.C. Services…

Community
Continue Reading

Park has a new name

Belcarra Regional Park is in Metro Vancouver. It has a new name. It is called təmtəm.xʷtən/Belcarra Regional Park. There was a ceremony on October 8. Members of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Metro Vancouver officials attended. Why was the name changed? The name was changed to recognize the park as part of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation. It…

Community Culture
Continue Reading

How to pack a picnic

One of the best ways to enjoy the summer is to eat outdoors. You can go on a picnic with your family and friends. You can picnic at a park, a beach, a campground or by a lake. What to bring on a picnic: a blanket a picnic table cover a picnic basket or tote…

Community Family Nature
Continue Reading

Haiku poems

The LINC 6 class from MOSAIC English Language Centre learned about the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival. They celebrated what they learned by writing haiku poems. A haiku is a Japanese poem. It has a special number of syllables in each line. The first and last lines have five syllables. The middle line has seven syllables….

Community English Learners Nature
Continue Reading

Neighbours decorate for Lunar New Year

Elaine Su was born in China. She lives in New Westminster. She celebrates the Lunar New Year. Elaine has a son named Ellis. He is two years old.  She wanted him to learn how Lunar New Year is celebrated in Chinese culture. But this year, there are no festivities planned due to the pandemic. Elaine…

Community Holidays Life Stories
Continue Reading

Black Shirt Day

On January 15, students and teachers in BC wore black shirts to school. They wore black shirts to raise awareness about racism. Why January 15? January 15 was Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. Martin Luther King Junior fought for the rights of African Americans in the 1950s and 1960s. He raised awareness about racism against…

Community Education History Social Issues
Continue Reading

“Please take my tenant!!!”

Jake Corr is a landlord. He rented a room in his house to Dustin. Jake and his wife are having twins. They need more space. They asked Dustin to move out so they could have extra space. Jake posted an ad Jake and Dustin live in Victoria. There are not many places to rent in…

Community Life Stories
Continue Reading

#DifferentTogether

People in BC are being asked to take a pledge against racism. A pledge is something you promise to do.    The pledge against racism was created by the Honourable Janet Austin, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia.    Why are people taking the pledge?   During the COVID-19 pandemic, many Asian Canadians have been hurt by violence and hateful words. People are taking the #DifferentTogether Pledge to stand…

Community Social Issues
Continue Reading

Donny’s Wax

Erik Levings and Taro Milligan are Grade 8 students from Abbotsford, BC. They like to skateboard. Their friend Donnie saw them skateboarding. He wanted to try, too. Making wax Levings and Milligan decided to buy Donnie his own skateboard. They made and sold their own skateboard wax to make money. Levings and Milligan went to…

Community Life Stories
Continue Reading

Making hearts

The Level 2 LINC class at Windsor Neighbourhood Learning Centre is learning online. The students are staying home to stop the spread of COVID-19. Hearts in the windows The students saw hearts in their neighbours’ windows. They wondered why. Their teachers gave them a story about the hearts. The class learned that the hearts were…

Community Social Issues
Continue Reading

Hearts in windows

Some houses in BC have hearts in the windows. Why are the hearts in the windows? Many people are worried about COVID-19. Most people stay at home. They want to stop the virus. Some people still need to go to work. Doctors, nurses, policemen, and grocery store workers go to work every day. Thank you!…

Community Social Issues
Continue Reading

Nunavut’s new greenhouse

Nunavut is a large territory in northern Canada. It is very cold and dark. The weather makes it hard for fruit and vegetables to grow. So, groceries are expensive. A greenhouse was built The Arctic Research Foundation wanted to help people in Nunavut. It made a greenhouse near Gjoa Haven from shipping containers called “sea…

Community Environment Food Life Stories
Continue Reading

Lize wins an award

Norma Lize is a refugee from Lebanon. In February, she was recognized as a leader in Vancouver’s LGBT community. She won the January Marie Lapuz Youth Leadership Award. Something was missing Lize grew up feeling that something was missing from her gender identity. At 18, she met a transgender woman. It made her think that…

Community English Learners Life Stories Social Issues
Continue Reading

Get out in the community

What can you do with your family during spring break? Here are some ideas. Visit a museum Some museums have free entry for children or families during spring break. They might also have special activities for young children. Go to the library Many public libraries have free programs for children or families during spring break. Visit…

Community Family Holidays
Continue Reading

Wreck Beach

Wreck Beach was named for shipwrecks in the water. What is Wreck Beach? Wreck Beach is the largest nude beach in Canada. It is 7.8 km long. People started swimming naked at Wreck Beach in the 1920s. Wreck Beach became an official nude beach in 1991. It was the first nude beach in Canada. How…

Community Environment Nature
Continue Reading

Pink Shirt Day

Pink Shirt Day is on the last Wednesday in February. On this day, people from around the world wear pink clothing to school and work. Why do we wear pink? In 2007, a boy wore a pink shirt on his first day of school in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The other students made fun of him….

Community Culture
Continue Reading

Landlord rights

Mei is a landlord. She rents out her parents’ old house. One day, Mei does a routine inspection of the house. It is very dirty. There is a hole in the wall. The cabinets are broken. There is water leaking on the floor. Her tenant has a cat. The lease says “no pets allowed.” Mei…

Community Culture Life Stories
Continue Reading

Tenant rights

Amare and Stephanie rent an apartment. The rent is affordable. They are happy. One day, their landlord visits. He tells them he will raise their rent by $200 per month. Amare and Stephanie are worried. They check their bank accounts. They look at their bills. They cannot afford the rent increase. The landlord says that…

Community Culture Life Stories
Continue Reading

Wildfires in BC every summer

Level 3 We have about 2000 forest fires every summer in BC. Forest fires are also called “wildfires”.Many hectares of forest are lost every year. Sometimes homes are lost, too. The wildfire season starts when the forest gets dry in the spring.The fire season ends when the forests get wet from rain and snow in…

Community
Continue Reading

Summer outdoor markets are open in BC

  This summer visit a farmers’ market. Some markets are night markets. Some are only open during the day. For a list of farmers’ markets in BC, visit the BC Farmers Market website.

Community
Continue Reading

Summer jobs for youth 2017

Level 3 The Summer Jobs Program helps students get summer jobs. The Summer Jobs Program is part of the Youth Employment Strategy. Read on to find out: What the program does Who can participate How students and youth can get help finding a job What does the program do? The Summer Jobs Program helps youth:…

Community
Continue Reading

B.C. Votes 2017

Resources for BC Votes 2017. Visit these links Find out more about elections in B.C. Digital and printable maps of B.C. Electoral Districts Interactive Electoral Districts Map Register to vote on-line Learn more about identification and vouching  

Community
Continue Reading

LINC students help the people of Fort McMurray

LEVEL 2 Carolyn Moi was sad. She watched the news. In May, a huge wildfire burned Fort McMurray. People lost their homes. Carolyn had an idea Carolyn is a teacher for the Burnaby School District. She teaches an adult LINC 1 class. Carolyn’s class wanted to help the people from Fort McMurray. At the same…

Community
Continue Reading

The Summer Jobs Program

In March, Prime Minister Trudeau announced more money for the Canada Summer Jobs Program. The Summer Jobs Program helps students get summer jobs. The program is part of the Youth Employment Strategy.

Community
Continue Reading

2016 Canada Census

Level 2 What is the census? The census is information about who lives in Canada. The information is gathered by Statistics Canada. What do I have to do? You will get an envelope in the mail. Follow the directions in the envelope. You can answer the census questions in two ways: You can fill in…

Community
Continue Reading

Prime Minister Trudeau in Washington

  LEVEL 3 Americans are excited about Prime Minister Trudeau. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau visited the President of the United States. He stayed for three days. This was the first official visit of a Canadian Prime Minister to the United States in 20 years. Hundreds of people greeted Prime Minister Trudeau at the White House…

Community
Continue Reading

A new totem pole for the Haida Gwaii

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 1 A totem pole is a carved log. The carvings tell stories and history. The new totem pole is 14 metres tall. Read the PDF.  Try the Exercise. A new totem pole for the Haida Gwaii-PDF Visit the links: Watch this video.  See the community set up the new…

Community
Continue Reading

Community gardens

Community gardening Story adapted from Wikipedia by Patti-Lea Ryan and the writer’s experience Level 3 Community gardening is very popular in cities. Many people like to grow fresh vegetables and flowers. Some gardeners do not have space for a garden. So they can become a member of a community garden. These gardens are maintained by…

Community
Continue Reading

The tiny ferries in False Creek

The tiny ferries in False Creek Adapted from Wikipedia by Patti-Lea Ryan Level 3 Looking for something fun to do? Why not try one of the little ferries in False Creek. The Aquabus and False Creek Ferries offer short ferry rides. Both companies also offer mini cruises around False Creek. People take the ferries: To…

Community
Continue Reading

Letter to the Editor

Please hear us!  Dear Sir/Madam: Re V.S.B Cancellation of Outreach Programs from Florence Nightingale Adult Education Outreach Class It is too easy to cancel this class because no one hears us. We are students at the Florence Nightingale Elementary School Adult Education Outreach Class. For the past 20 years, this class has been helping parents in East…

Community
Continue Reading

Best Mayor in the world

Best mayor in the world Adapted from CBC News by Nila Gopaul Level 1 In 2014, Naheed* Nenshi was voted the best mayor** in the world. * say:  nah-heed ** say: may-er – the head of a city or town Nenshi is the mayor of Calgary. Calgary is in Alberta, Canada. Nenshi heard the news…

Community
Continue Reading

Transit tax – yes or no?

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul Are you a Canadian citizen? Do you live in Metro Vancouver?* (See a map on the next page.) Are you a resident of B.C. (for at least six months on or before May 29, 2015)? Are you 18 years of age or older, (on or before May 29, 2015)? Are…

Community
Continue Reading

Meet a library champion

Submitted by the Vancouver Public Library Meet Shu Ming Chen:  Doctor, recent newcomer to Canada, and proud library champion. Her mission: Support her community and help immigrants discover their local library and all that it offers. Q: Why did you become a library champion? A: When newcomers have just landed, they feel isolated and anxious…

Community
Continue Reading

Fun fact about B.C. – neon

Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul Neon signs are electric signs. They contain neon and other gases. The signs are made of glass tubes. These tubes are bent and made into interesting shapes with different colours. In the 1950s, Vancouver had 19,000 neon signs. This means that there was one sign for every 18 people!…

Community
Continue Reading

Polar swim – 2015

The Polar Bear Swim – 2015 Adapted from The Province by Nila Gopaul The Polar Bear Swim is a tradition. It happens every year on New Year’s Day. Some people dress in costumes. Others wear bathing suits or shorts. Brave people jump into the ice-cold water. They scream. They laugh. They have fun.

Community
Continue Reading

B.C. says sorry

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun and The Province by Nila Gopaul Listen to the story– Level 2 Reading by Corey Muench The year was 1864. B.C. was a British colony. Gold was discovered in the Cariboo. And there was conflict. Men died. The B.C. government wanted to build a toll road to the Cariboo. The government…

Community
Continue Reading

B.C.’s best buildings

The Architecture Foundation of B.C. had a contest. The foundation asked people to vote online to find the top 25 buildings in four areas of B.C. People voted from around the world. Click here to see the top four winners: The Marine Building in Vancouver got the top award – in southern B.C. Seabird Island School in…

Community
Continue Reading

Get to know BC: islands

“Get to know BC” is a new occasional feature with fun facts about the province. Did you know BC has about 40,000 islands? There are islands of many different sizes. The largest is Vancouver Island. Some are mid-sized islands, like Salt Spring Island. Ivory Island and Entrance Island are very small islands. Some islands are for sale….

Community
Continue Reading

Dorothy Arey, a champion for 23 years

Level 3 Adapted from the CBC website For 23 years, Dorothy Arey was a CBC radio announcer-operator. She worked in a town called Inuvik, which is in the western Canadian Arctic, in Canada’s North. Arey helped people keep in touch. The main language in Inuvik is English. But Arey was a champion of her own…

Community
Continue Reading

The outdoor car show season is here

Adapted from The Province Level 1 Owning an old car can be fun! Old cars are called classic cars. The car show season begins the first weekend in May. There are car shows almost every weekend until September. Show and Shine is a common name for classic car shows. Read the PDF and do the…

Community
Continue Reading

Doorknobs are changing

Adapted from The Vancouver Sun Level 1 The City of Vancouver is changing the building code. The new rules start in March 2014. They are changing how we open doors. All new door handles will be levers. The round doorknob will disappear. Read the PDF and do the exercise Doorknobs are changing Visit the link…

Community
Continue Reading

Driving the Coquihalla in winter

Adapted from The Province Level 2 The Coquihalla is a highway in British Columbia. The highway runs from Hope to Merritt. It is also called Highway 5. The highway runs through the mountains. It goes over high mountain passes. The Coquihalla is a dangerous highway in the winter. Read the PDF and do the exercise Driving…

Community
Continue Reading
1 2