To advance public awareness of the principles, values and practice of restorative justice and to facilitate restorative justice program development in the City of Vancouver.
Founded in 2006, VANCOUVER ASSOCIATION FOR* RESTORATIVE JUSTICE (VARJ) is incorporated as a not-for-profit Society in British Columbia, Canada and is a Registered Charity with Canada Revenue Agency – account# 867700833RR0001
*(our association name was initially registered with “of” instead of “for” – the correction is in process)
ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF INDIGENOUS TERRITORY AND THE TRADITIONAL PRACTICE OF RESTORATIVE JUSTICE
We are fortunate enough to gather on the unceded traditional territories of the mi ce:p kʷətxʷiləm (Tseil-Wauthuth), xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), and Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish) First Nations, and it is with the utmost respect and mindfulness that we invest our time and energy into the practices of Restorative Justice. As put on the Correctional Service Canada website, “Restorative Justice practices are becoming increasingly more popular as the guideposts to effective corrections policy, both inside prisons and within the wider community. Restorative Justice philosophy is based on the traditional practices of Indigenous Cultures around the world. It is founded on the belief that criminal behaviour is primarily caused by the alienation of certain members from society at large. Although it is the responsibility of every individual to make positive choices for their life, regardless of personal circumstances, Restorative Justice principles are based on the understanding of compassion, that no one is an island, and that everyone is an equal member of society and has a contribution to make to the greater good. Therefore, when a person becomes alienated or disconnected from that society, it is the responsibility of everyone in that society to bring the person back into a harmonious relationship with him/her “self”, as well as with the rest of the community. This may mean that the society itself needs to take a long hard look at its own practices and systems which may be “contributing factors” to the person’s alienation from it. The society may need to heal itself.”
Currently, the Board of Directors are the only voting members; Board Associates are non-voting members.
Board meetings are usually held monthly. If you are considering active participation in VARJ, or just want to learn more about us, you are most welcome to attend any of our Board meetings and our Annual General Meeting. Please send us a brief email about your interest and we will tell you the time and location of our next meeting.