BC Farmers’ Market Learning Month – Farmers’ Market Board Governance

January is BC Farmers’ Market Learning Month for board members who govern farmers’ markets and we’ve hand picked a cornucopia of resources in order to inspire your organizations growth in 2022!

For the Farmers’ Market Learning Month resources click here.

For the Vendors Learning Month resources click here.

The following videos and learning tools have been sourced from our conferences, webinar series as well as trusted sources and partners. The majority of the educational opportunities here are free to view however there are some very worthwhile outsourced workshops that have a small fee attached.

Ask Melissa Maltais, BCAFM Membership & Program Lead

Fridays in January from 10am to 2pm

Resource Type: Meeting over Google Meet


Need some clarity in regards to BCAFM’s bylaws?

Would you like to sit down and have fresh eyes on your budget?

Presented by: Melissa Maltais, BCAFM Membership & Programs Lead

Melissa Maltais has previously worked with the Surrey Urban Farmers Market, New Westminster Farmers Market and with the Fraser North Farmers Market Society overseeing the management of the Port Coquitlam and Haney Farmers Markets.

She is an award winning fundraiser and has assisted in generating over $1 million in revenue for the BC SPCA helping animals in need of veterinary care. Melissa has been with the BCAFM on and off since 2013 as the Farmers’ Market Nutrition Coupon Coordinator, Administrative Coordinator and helped developed webinars for BCAFM in 2020.

Monetize Your Market – Increase Your Sponsorship Revenue

February 2021

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference

Resource Type: Youtube

Recording Length: 48 minutes


Your Farmers Market has the potential to generate $250 – $500 per market in extra sponsorship revenue by attracting the right sponsors to the table! In this interactive workshop, Melissa will show you how to:

Discover where your local sponsors are at
Nurture those relationships to further your fundraising goals
Identify parts of your in-person market which has revenue earning potential
Identify parts of your online presence which has revenue earning potential
Craft that killer sponsorship package

Presented by: Melissa Maltais, Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society


Canva Template – Advertising Sales Sheet

Date: February 2021

Sourced From: Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society

Resource Type: Canva Template


From digital space on your website and newsletters to signage on your opening day! Use this Canva template to reach out and earn more sponsorship dollars for your farmers’ market!

Provided by: Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society


Music Stage Sponsorship Package Template For Farmers’ Markets

Date: September 2020

Sourced From: Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society

Resource Type: Word Document


Your farmers’ market space and programming is valuable real estate for receiving sponsorships! Use this template and tailor it towards individual donors and programs in your market.

Provided by: Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society


Hold An Online Silent Auction: The Five Steps To Success

Sourced From: 32 Auctions

Resource Type: Website


Hosting an online auction is a great way to host a fundraiser for your farmers’ market. Reach out to members of your community for donations. And here’s a tip: gift cards and PDF gift certificates are SUPER easy to send to the winners after the event is over!

Provided by: 32 Auctions


25 Online Fundraising Ideas Perfect for Any Cause (Social Distancing Approved!)

Date: May 2021

Sourced From: Personify Wild Apricot

Resource Type: Website


COVID-19 has completely changed the landscape of fundraising, and the foolproof methods nonprofit professionals have always relied on are now out of the question.

Nonprofits have been forced to postpone their meetings with donors, cancel their events, and figure out how to continue raising funds in the era of social distancing.

The good news is that it is entirely possible to reach your nonprofit’s fundraising goals online.

Provided by: Personify Wild Apricot

Board Table Disruption: Conflicts of Interest

Date: November 24, 2021

Time: 12pm to 1pm

Sourced From: Pacific Legal and Outreach Society

Resource Type: Online Workshop

Recording Length: 60 minutes

register for workshop

Does your board know how to identify, avoid, and navigate conflicts of interest?

Join PLEO Legal Director, Martha Rans, for a conversation with governance experts Kyla Epstein and Guy Chartier on this important legal issue.

Presented by: PLEO


Individual Director Responsibilities


Sourced From: Vantage Point

Resource Type: Vimeo Video

Recording Length: 2 minutes


This short video highlights the responsibilities of individual directors when they join your organization.

Presented by: Vantage Point


How to be an Awesome Board Member

May 4, 2015

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 1 hour 30 minutes


This highly interactive session will take all farmers’ market Board members (new, old, engaged, flustered, clueless, trying hard, and everyone in between) through a process of learning, thinking, and collaborating in order to become more effective, reflective, and influential in their work – without putting in any more hours!

Presented by: Michelle Wolf (Farmers’ Markets of Nova Scotia and Whole Green Heart)


Creating Effective Leadership Through Better Governance

Feb 20, 2014

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 1 hour 13 Minutes


With planning for a new season on the horizon, bringing new directors and managers up to speed can be a challenge. This workshop brings high-level principles of governance to a working level that the participants can connect with and apply. Whether your market has only started operating in the last 2-3 years or is well established, this workshop will be of value if you are seeking more clarity on how key decisions for your market are made, and the relationship between your board members and your market manager.

Presented by: David Lee, Propellor Social Enterprise Advisor

Your Budget Tells Your Market Story

November 9, 2020

Sourced From: BCAFM Webinar Series

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 48 minutes

Watch the Recording

In this webinar, Heather O’Hara from the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets and Melissa Maltais from Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society discuss practical tips and tools to gear up for budget planning season, from crafting your financial tale to presenting to your financial board.

DOWNLOAD your Farmers’ Market Budget Template

Presented by: Heather O’Hara, BCAFM Executive Director
Presented by: Melissa Maltais, former Fraser North Farmers Market Society Executive Director


Ongoing Operating Revenues: Real Operating Revenue Opportunities for Farmers’ Market Series

August 12, 2020

Sourced From: BCAFM Webinar Series

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 58 minutes

Watch the Recording

In part one of this two-part webinar series, Melissa Maltais from Fraser North Farmers’ Market Society along with Heather O’Hara from the BC Association of Farmers’ Markets discuss practical tips and tools to secure grants, sponsorship, municipal operating agreements and other revenue opportunities for your market.

In this webinar, we cover municipal operating agreements and sponsorship opportunities, along with some great fundraising examples for farmers’ market organizers

Presented by: Melissa Maltais, former Fraser North Farmers Market Society Executive Director
Presented by: Heather O’Hara, BCAFM Executive Director

Equity and your Farmers Market Board of Directors

February 2021

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 1 hour 10 minutes

Watch the Recording

People step forward to volunteer as board members for their local Farmers Market for all sorts of reasons, commonly sharing a desire to contribute to local food security, and to connect their community with local farmers. It is not likely that they step forward thinking: “I hope I can do this with a bunch of like-minded white people”, and yet farmers market boards are often without much, if any, BIPOC representation. In this workshop, we’ll explore what board governance is, and how boards can be active in engaging a more diverse representation of their community.

Participants will learn about actively recruiting and orienting new board members with equity as a guiding principle. We will shine a light on governance structure and the language used to describe it as key ways to better understand what we are asking volunteers to do, and how structure and language can act as barriers to participation.

Presented by: Paige Dampier, Close to Home Organics
Presented by: Ruby Campbell, Director of Advancement, Faculty Art & Social Sciences, Simon Fraser University


Introduction To Territorial Acknowledgements


Sourced From: Nahanee Creative

Resource Type: On Demand Workshop

Cost: $40

Link To On Demand Workshop

This on demand mini-course on Territorial Acknowledgements is for everyone who wants to learn: what Territorial Acknowledgements are, why they matter, and how to create and deliver yours in a good way. Together, we’ll dive deeper into the concepts of colonial conditioning and decolonizing practices in relation to Lands, Belonging and Shared Territory.

You will explore brave new language and be encouraged to critically analyze how you share your commitment to Territorial Acknowledgements.

While the teachings and critical Indigenous theory shared by Ta7talíya-men Paisley Eva Nahanee are grounded in the Squamish worldview, they are applicable across Indigenous Territories.

Presented by: Ta7talíya-men Paisley Eva Nahanee, Nahanee Creative


Building Diverse & Equitable Nonprofit Boards: A Panel Discussion With Sector Experts 

September 29, 2021

Sourced From: Charity Village

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 57 minutes

Watch the Recording

Earlier this year, Statistics Canada released the results of a survey exploring the diversity of charity and nonprofit boards in Canada. The results confirmed what many in the sector already know – that those who identify as immigrants, persons of colour, LGBTQ2+ individuals, persons with a disability, and First Nations, Metis, and Inuit are vastly underrepresented on nonprofit and charity boards of directors. In this panel discussion we discuss the implications of these findings and what organizations can do to build a more diverse and equitable sector, starting with their boards.

Presented by: Charity Village


Anti Racism in Farmers’ Markets: A Toolkit For Markets and Their Teams


Sourced From: Equity In Farmers Markets

Resource Type: Toolkit PDF

Download The Toolkit

This toolkit is designed for Market Managers, Boards of Directors, Market volunteers, and Market stakeholders.

​It was developed to assist Farmers Markets in the shared goal of making Farmers Markets more equitable for farmers of colour, especially Black and Indigenous farmers, who have historically and are currently being shut out of the benefits of participating in Farmers Markets.

Created by: The Equity in Farmers’ Markets Working Group is a group of BIPOC and white allies who are connected to Farmers Markets as farmers, managers, and customers and are working to make change in markets and food spaces.


Connecting Your Market to Diverse Communities

March 23, 2017

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference

Resource Type: Youtube Video

Recording Length: 32 minutes

Watch the Recording

In 2016, the Vancouver Farmers Markets (VFM) launched their Local Food Global Flavours (LFGF) project with the goals of attracting more Asian shoppers and increasing sales of locally grown Asian vegetables at their markets. The Hua Foundation was a partner on the project and provided valuable insight into the Asian community’s values, preferences and market traditions/norms. Kevin will provide that expertise in this workshop and offer his suggestions for markets and vendors to better appeal and serve the Asian consumer. Eric Koo is a VFM vendor and a participant in the LFGF program. Eric speaks Cantonese and grows Asian vegetables among other crops. He will share his experience with the LFGF program, and as a vendor who has developed a following for his Asian vegetables.

Presented by: Roberta Lapaglia, Vancouver Farmers’ Market


Taking Action On Board Diversity: Five Questions To Get Your Started


Sourced From: Board Source

Resource Type: Info Sheet PDF

Download the info sheet

At the most fundamental level, who serves on a board impacts how it functions and the decisions it makes. While
board composition is not one-size-fits all, a board that is homogeneous in any way risks having blind spots that
negatively impact its ability to make the best decisions and plans for the organization. The blind spots created
by a lack of racial and ethnic diversity are particularly concerning, as they may result in strategies and plans that
ineffectively address societal challenges and inequities, or even reinforce them.

Presented by: BoardSource.org


Ensuring Product Transparency: Toolkit for BC Farmers’ Markets


Sourced From: BCAFM Tools & Resources

Resource Type: Toolkit PDF


Consumers have many choices of where to purchase local food. Therefore there is a greater responsibility on farmers’ market organizers to ensure the authenticity of products being sold through the farmers’ market.

The belief that customers are purchasing products that were made, baked, grown or raised by the producer in BC is a definitive and deciding factor in consumers’ choice of where to spend their money. Therefore, ensuring the authenticity and transparency of products being sold at member BC farmers’ markets is of significant importance.

Prepared for BCAFM by: Tabitha McLoughlin, Executive Director – Grow Local Society


Delegations to Local Councils

September 22, 2016

Sourced From: BCAFM Conference
Resource Type: Youtube Video


Participants in this workshop will learn about delegations and presentations to your local government, and how to make a business case for farmers’ markets by highlighting their successes.

Presented by: Helen Fathers, former Market Manager – White Rock Farmers’ Market

Farmers Market Contingency Plans For Extreme Environmental Challenges

July 26, 2021

Sourced From: Farmers’ Market Pros

Resource Type: Podcast via Youtube

listen to podcast

Across the United States we’re seeing record-breaking heatwaves, summer downpours and an early start to fire season. As extreme weather becomes more and more common, farmers market operators have to get creative and develop contingency plans to keep their farmers market up and running while also keeping their farmers, vendors and shoppers safe. In this episode we discuss how to handle inclement weather and other environmental issues that impact your outdoor farmers market.

Presented by: Farmers Market Pros


De-escalating Tense Situations At The Farmers Market

Jan 18, 2021

Sourced From: Farmers’ Market Pros

Resource Type: Podcast via Youtube

listen to podcast

Bad days happen – even at the farmers market. Sometimes market managers and staff have to face disgruntled shoppers and tense situtations. After almost a year of stay at home orders and COVID-19 restrictions, it seems like everyone’s feeling a little on edge. On this week’s episode of Tent Talk, we share some helpful tips and resources on how to de-escalate conflict at the farmers market. We also discuss the importance of relaxation and self-care in between market days.

Presented by: Farmers Market Pros



Sourced From: BCAFM Tools & Resources

Resource Type: Toolkit PDF

Download the toolkit

A crisis is any event that threatens to harm, damage or disrupt people, property, business, reputations and revenue.
What you are facing may not yet be a crisis, but it could escalate into one. Be prepared for how to handle a crisis at your market by downloading this toolkit.

Adapted by: This guide was adapted by the BC Association of Farmers Markets, with permission, from the manual “Crisis Communications Guide” published by Farmers Market Federation New York and Cornell University Cooperative Extension Jefferson Country in August 2011.


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