The University of Victoria (UVic) launched a community mapping project in partnership with the Moose Hide Campaign.
Students, faculty and staff were encouraged to share stories about positive experiences, places they felt safe, services and information they found helpful, and several other themes that align with Moose Hide Campaign values.
For example, when asked to describe a space where they felt safe on campus, one community member responded: “Mystic Vale is my favorite place to go for a run and relax when I am feeling stressed.” When asked about a time when they experienced an act of solidarity, a student responded: “Students marched around ring road to support Indigenous sovereignty.”
A numbered sticker corresponding to each story was placed on a map of campus. These were then converted into a digital map, using QGIS – a free, open-source GIS software.
Stories were categorized into five themes based on the prompts given. Anyone in the community could then access and interact with the map – find it here: moosehideuviccommap.netlify.com.
In addition to the mapping project, students from UVic were also encouraged to participate in Moose Hide Campaign Day in BC, and fast together in solidarity with the Campaign.
A toolkit has now been created for those interested in recreating this community mapping process. This will provide institutions and their communities with the ability to discover their own strengths and safe spaces and identify areas for improvement. This toolkit includes an introduction to the concept of community mapping, a description of the process and suggested mapping tools.