eMERGE Guelph

Transition Streets

street_pathwayDo you want to connect with the neighbours around you? Do you envision a community that is based on connectedness and working together? Perhaps you want rain barrels, trees on your street, backyard chickens or a vegetable garden, more walkable neighbourhoods where your kids are safe to play, safe bike routes around the city? Maybe you have no idea how to go about creating a resilient community, but you want to take action?

Transition Streets is bringing neighbours together to get better acquainted, while learning collaboratively how to save money, reduce environmental footprints, and empower you to work together to create positive and long term environmental and social change. Through Transition Streets, you get to be the change you want to have in your neighbourhood.

This award-winning program has been adapted for Guelph from the famous Transition Streets program in Totnes, England. Transition Streets Guelph is a collaboration between eMERGE Guelph, Transition Guelph, and researchers at the University of Guelph.

Transition Streets Is For You If You:

  • Have kids and want to create fun, interactive spaces and for them to be safe
  • Are new to the neighbourhood and want connection and a sense of community
  • Have an awesome idea and you want a group of people to help make it happen
  • Care about your grandchildren and the world that you will be leaving for them.

What are the Benefits:

  • Get things done – Transition Streets is action based. It provides a guideline and framework to help turn ideas into action.
  • Learn – what actually makes a difference – there is so much ‘eco-clutter’. Know what is important to take action on.
  • Connect with neighbours – you’ll make instant connections with the people that live in your neighbourhood.
  • Save money – many of the suggested actions will save you money.
  • How does it Work?
  • Time Commitment
  • Topics
  • Get Started
  • How Does it Work?

    One person in the neighbourhood acts as the ‘host’ – the catalyst to bring the group together. Once formed, the group decides on how frequently they get together, where to meet, and whether to include children’s activities, social time or a potluck meal along with the learning program – the beauty is, you and your neighbours get to define how you want to structure your gatherings.

    Each group is provided with a trained facilitator who will help you along your journey — help lead meetings if you wish, answer questions, and act as a resource person.

    After you decide on how you want to gather, you will receive the program that is structured around a fun and interactive 7-topic activity book designed specifically for Guelph residents. Neighbours learn together, one topic per session, with individuals and families then identifying the actions they can take. Participants are encouraged to share their knowledge, brainstorm solutions and have fun while doing it!

    At the end of the gatherings, we want to hear about the changes you have made, or are planning to make, and your shepherd will help illustrate what savings have been made. Feedback from your group will help to refine the project for the next neighbour groups.

  • What are your commitments?

    You and your neighbours are in charge. We suggest that each group commit to two meetings per month, two hours each time.

  • What are the Topics?

    1. Getting Started – Meet your neighbours, learn about the program, make some decisions on how the group is going to run.
    2. Energy – Learn how Ontario makes energy, how it relates to you, how to save electricity, gas, and money.
    3. Water – Learn how Guelph gets its water, and some simple steps to reduce water waste in your home.
    4. Waste – Learn what Canada and Ontario are doing with waste reduction, and some simple steps to reduce the amount of waste your home produces.
    5. Food – Learn about local and organic food options, and easy, customized steps to making changes in your food routine.
    6. Transportation – Learn the ins and outs of vehicle pollution, how it relates to you, and easy options for commuting to work.
    7. Moving Forward – Celebrate the decisions you made and your accomplishments, and look to the future to see what else is possible.

    Transition Streets Activity Book 2015

  • Ready to Get Started?

    For more information on getting started please email melody@emergeguelph.ca