EVENT UPDATE: Our ENGAGE: Deeply Event is Postponed

TEDxCalgary has made the difficult — but very necessary — decision to postpone our planned ENGAGE: Deeply event until October 31, 2020.

The spread of coronavirus/COVID-19 infections is a very real threat to all of us, and our risk assesments determined that our event was not appropriate to hold at this juncture, while modes of infection for the virus remain uncertain. In alignment with guidance being issued by health authorities, the City of Calgary, and now by the Government of Alberta, we voluntarily chose a course of action that we feel will best protect the health of our participants, speakers, and volunteers.

Individuals holding tickets are now being communicated with directly by email. We will continue to update the public via our website as we revise our plans for the new October 31st date. If you're a current ticket-holder looking to have your purchase refunded, please visit our events refund page for additional details and instructions.

Our thanks to our partners, speakers, and volunteers for all of their guidance and support as we made this decision, and we look forward to meeting our participants in person at ENGAGE: Deeply (Take 2) in Fall 2020.

-- The TEDxCalgary team

COMMUNITY SALONS UPDATE: All Events Suspended Immediately

Our community salons are being suspended immediately due to closure of programming and event spaces in our partner facilities of the Calgary Public Library. These suspensions are a result of measures being taken by the Library to slow or stop the spread of Coronavirus/COVID-19 infections.

We completely understand and support the Library's decision to do this, and we will resume the community salons in various branches across the city as soon as it is safe and practical to do so. Please note that some community salon locations may return sooner than others, as our own programming is based on volunteer availability and specific arrangements with each branch. As we normally take a break during July and August, some locations may not resume programming until the Fall. Check our Community Salons pages on MeetUp for details.

As we figure out new and ever more innovative ways to connect and engage with our community during a time of physical isolation and distancing, stay tuned for some opportunities for interactive community salons taking place online in the coming months!

-- The TEDxCalgary team

Staying Engaged in a Time of Isolation

Written by  , Published in News
TEDxCalgary Navigators event, 2018 TEDxCalgary Navigators event, 2018

We find ourselves in a time of great uncertainty that demands a period of physical isolation, but that doesn't mean we and our ideas need to be isolated socially.

Like many event-focused organizations, TEDxCalgary (and many other TEDx teams worldwide, including TED itself) has been impacted by the physical isolation or distancing measures deemed so necesary to slow or stop the spread of Coronavirus/COVID-19 infections. We know that these are being referred to as "social distancing", and why that descriptor is being used by governments and health professionals, but we feel that the term creates the wrong mindset. Physical distancing is absolutely essential to flatten the curve of infections spreading and reduce pressures on health care systems. But how do we stay connected to one another in a time of isolation?

Fortunately, we know that we're not the only ones who think that way. Societal crises like these can be unifying moments, or they can tear us further apart. Globally, there is a chance for governments to coordinate efforts and collaborate in ways they haven't done for many years. At the same time, there also is very much a chance that the response turns into one of more profound divisiveness and isolation. We genuinely hope that the spirit of collaboration wins out, and that we emerge with a better sense that the world is far more connected than most people care to realize. Although alarming in a moment of pandemic, that very connectedness as a system should also encourge us to be more understanding of the world around us.

We were tickled to have the following cartoon from Sam Hester in The Sprawl shared with us today, by long-time collaborator Colin Jackson with Calgary on Purpose (a big shout-out!). Sam is an amazing graphic recorder who wonderfully captured our 2014 Wilderness event at the Calgary Zoo. The full comic is very much worth the read, but here's the panel that really resonated with us, explaining why PHYSICAL isolation/distancing is necessary, but SOCIAL isolation isn't desirable in a time of need:

Sam Hester 2020 - The Sprawl Calgary

Image from The Sprawl Calgary, by Sam Hester

In making our own decision to postpone our planned March 28 ENGAGE: Deeply event to October 31st, we knew it was the right thing to do in the circumstances. All the evidence pointed to our event having higher risk factors given its very nature: people spending a prolonged period (up to 7 hours) in close proximity, sharing ideas face-to-face. That's actually the magic of our in-person events, and what was set to make ENGAGE: Deeply most special. It was intended to develop new connections among participants, and foster deep conversations. Our mastheard image for this story highlights the intimacy of those connections, and why our participants emerge with a different sense of connection. They don't just listen to the ideas of our speakers — they help create even more powerful ideas and stories together, by virtue of the connections they make in person.

Our revised event date gives us opportunity to make ENGAGE: Deeply (Take 2) even better, and more meaningful for the fact that it will occur after we (hopefully) emerge from the events and anxieties of today with new perspectives to share. In the meantime, we'll be hard at work trying to find ways to keep us connected and engaged socially with one another, and still sharing the ideas that matter more now than ever. Keep tuned as our amazing team of volunteers brainstorms on options!

-- Jonathan Perkins, Curator and Co-Founder

Last modified onMonday, 16 March 2020 11:36

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