Why women matter to our growing social movement

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When 200 participants gather at sheTalk Resources to share their personal stories, it is an empowering moment that is part of a shift that started in mid-2014 


That’s when Resource Works launched with a mission to stimulate a fresh new conversation about British Columbia’s natural resource economy.

Resources are the economic engine of the province, providing the bedrock of our prosperity and quality of life. Yet, for far too long, how we benefit from resources has created division rather than unity. Environmental issues have (rightly) come to the forefront, and so have issues concerning First Nations and broader distribution of the many benefits of a healthy resource economy.

Resource Works set out to make change in these crucial areas, starting with credible research about basic facts.

We found out, for example, that Canada is among the best in the world at responsible resource use, and even though it is not perfect today, it is getting better.


It's about values

Just the facts are not nearly enough. By looking at shared values – around the things we have in common – Resource Works searched for a formula to be both informed and inclusive.

Already we are seeing signs that momentum is building. Our goal is to mobilize 100,000 beautiful people – men and women – across British Columbia.

One year ago a gathering like sheTalks Resources would have seemed like an unlikely hypothesis. Resources are about men and doing dirty jobs in rural places – aren’t they?

A surge of research by Resource Works has shown that resources are about women just as much as they are about men – maybe more so.

After all, if we did not have the $33 billion in resource royalties that provided essential family services in BC over the past decade, what kind of society would BC be?


What does the future hold?

Today, future resource benefits – jobs, revenues, new infrastructure that lets small businesses flourish – are in the balance. Voices seem to dominate the conversation that are against any kind of risk, no matter how responsible or balanced it may be. We risk losing
out on once-in-a-generation opportunities that bring with them sustained social benefits.

When I joined Resource Works earlier this year, I was proud to know that the environmentally conscious, socially committed individuals who are leading it were breaking ground in identifying the values that can unite.

That’s why sheTalks Resources is so important. Seventeen women sharing their personal stories – the makings of a genuine, memorable experience.

We prepared this infographic to give a taste of the research we have done on our topic.

As the movement grows, the first-ever sheTalks Resources conference sets the bar at a new high for how a better conversation will inform important decisions for our children’s future.

Barinder Rasode is director of social responsibility for Resource Works.