The Rockies Institute - The Resilience Institute



Unprecedented disasters due to accelerated climate change are happening now. While every effort must be made to curb the impacts of climate change, we must also address the current and near future risks if we want to minimize suffering and protect biodiversity - and lives.
Our organization helps develop resilience by delivering basic climate education, conducting applied research and by weaving knowledge systems towards effective adaptation to climate change impacts.
Our priorities are to strengthen pathways for global-to-local and local-to-global knowledge sharing and to co-develop resilience-building initiatives with Indigenous and rural communities in Canada and South Africa - where some of the most vulnerable to climate change impact live.

Mission Statement

To co-create a climate resilient future and reduce risk to disasters.

Program Details

Our network of multi-disciplinary experts from around deeply engage people in pro-active and creative initiatives that inspire resilience building to climate risks and develop capacity for adaptation.
The following is a snapshot of our initiatives:
The Art of Climate Change: a program that marries art and science by engaging citizens in thematic learning. For example:
  • Fire & Ice in the Canadian Rockies where participants learned about wildfire in a warming world, water security and photography skills for all levels. Coupling this knowledge, they participated in field trips to areas of regrowth after wildfires and to glaciers. Their images and essays were shared with their community as well as exhibited at the Cave & Basin Historical Site in Banff National Park where an estimated 300,000 people from around visit each year.
  • Niitsitapii Artists of Climate Change: building climate resilience and adaptation through the eyes of Kainai First Nation Youth. Working with Blackfoot artists, and mentored by elders, youth created visual representations of their learning about climate change. The culmination of their learning was documented in a booklet and shared through public exhibitions.
Local Early Action Plans (LEAP): a LEAP helps communities answer key questions and provide the foundation for preparing and implementing practical strategies for community-led adaptation to climate change. It helps to generate a portfolio of strategies and actions to better manage the priority threats; a list of immediate strategies and actions to be considered for implementation; and, basic information on actions to support decision-making for implementation. It is an excellent tool for small communities and businesses that want to build their resilience, but lack capacity and/or knowledge about climate change adaptation.
Adaptation Planning with Indigenous Communities Adjacent to UNESCO World Heritage Sites and National Parks in Southern Africa: a novel partnership with South African National Parks (SANParks) and the South Africa Research Council (ARC) to scale up, and out, capacity building for climate adaptation in some of South Africa’s oldest and most threatened Indigenous peoples – the Nama living near and in the Richtersveld World Heritage Site and the Khomani San living near the Khomani Cultural Landscape and World Heritage Site adjacent to the Kalahari Gemsbok National Park. Through this participatory, action-based initiative, we aim to build on existing strengths in the region to inspire local will for climate change adaptation and develop local skills for long-term implementation of adaptation strategies.
Co-Created Climate Learning Journeys: a replicable process that is suitable for multiple stakeholder types for learning about climate change and relevant options for adaptation. By co-creating the content for climate change education workshops participants are more engaged in the learning process and therefore more willing to take action toward building climate resilience in their communities and businesses.
Stories of Resilience (NEW): through storytelling, workshops, and other creative outputs, this program will promote a narrative of what makes people and communities resilient. Reducing risk to disasters begins with perceptions and attitudes about ourselves and our capabilities to adapt. Resilient people will create resilient communities. In a world where the 24-hour news cycle is overflowing with devastating news, Stories of Resilience will shine a bright light on that which makes us strong, compassionate, and capable in times of change. This is imperative to our health and wellness as the impacts of climate change are only expected to increase in intensity and frequency.
Primary Issue
Climate Change
Box 8277
Canmore, AB T1W 2V1
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