What's Keeping You in Vancouver?

2018, Cities

Join us for an open-air dialogue about identity and belonging in Vancouver in the heart of Mount Pleasant.

Vancouver is in the midst of an unprecedented affordability crisis. Rapidly rising housing costs and stagnating wages are making it harder and harder to stay in the city we love. And yet, we’re still here. 

On August 8, the citizen-run STAY Campaign, the Vancouver Mural Festival and SFU Public Square are thrilled to convene dedicated Vancouverites to answer the question "What's keeping you in Vancouver?" in front of the poignant mural by Métis artist JP Langlois and British-born/Pakistan-raised artist Sara Khan.

This community dialogue invites us to discuss what’s keeping us here, what we need to continue to stay, and why Vancouver needs us to thrive. With a municipal election on the horizon, this is a chance to articulate what it will take to ensure there is space for everyone here in Vancouver. This conversation aims to deepen our empathy, strengthen our connections and emphasize why we need to keep working towards an inclusive city that honours the unceded land it is built upon.

About STAY Campaign

Vancouver is in an affordability crisis. This is about real people, and real stories. We want to know what you need from Vancouver to enable you to stay. Learn how to share your stay story at

STAY Campaign will be on site to help you create your own stories. Come learn more and share your story!

Wed, 08 Aug 2018

6:15 p.m. (PT)

Gold Buddha Monastery Parking Lot
243 East 11th Avenue, Vancouver

We respectfully acknowledge that this event takes place on the unceded, traditional, ancestral Territories of the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm First Nations.


Michelle Nahanee

Michelle Lorna Nahanee (Squamish) is the designer of a life-size board game and workshop called Sínulhkay and Ladders. She is a creative director, critical communications scholar and Indigenous changemaker. Michelle recently completed a Master of Arts in Communication from Simon Fraser University where she wrote “Decolonizing Identity: Indian Girl to Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Matriarch.” She concluded her research with a call to dismantle academic barriers to decolonizing practices.

Megan Lau

Megan Lau is the Manager of Communications, Engagement & Equity at STORYHIVE. Megan has written and edited for publications across Canada, including Maisonnueve, Megaphone, Reader’s Digest, the Toronto Star and Ricepaper Magazine. She is also part of the founding team of SAD Mag, a Vancouver-based arts and culture magazine. In the nonprofit sector, Megan has developed programs to support food justice, and had roles in fundraising, strategic communications and digital engagement. In 2016, she co-founded The Future Is You and Me, a free, community-based leadership program for women of colour in the arts, ages 19-25. She is currently a member of the City of Vancouver's Creative City Strategy External Advisory Committee.

Aslam Bulbulia

I am a new settler on Coast Salish territories from South Africa, with Indian heritage. I have an undergraduate degree in political science and philosophy and I'm always trying to raise the bar set by my parents and be a good role model for my brothers. I'm currently occupied with trying to understand how to bridge gaps between communities and decision-makers, in order to strengthen democracy and improve social cohesion. I am enrolled in the SFU Certificate in Dialogue and Civic Engagement, and a member of CityHive's Civic Engagement 30 Network. I am grateful to be leading the Community Engagement Initiatives at the SFU Centre for Comparative Muslim Studies.


Anthonia Ogundele

As a trained planner, Anthonia Ogundele has a passion for cities and engaging communities. As a member of the Northeast False Creek Stewardship Group, Anthonia is interested in bringing an intersectional lens to planning issues. She is also on the board of the Coal Harbour Residents' Association and her newest endeavor with her husband is The Cheeky Proletariat, an art space on Carrall Street that features local artists. As a member of the African Diaspora, Anthonia remains curious and passionate about daylighting the Black Canadian identity whilst she remains relentlessly curious in discovering her own. Professionally, Anthonia manages the environmental sustainability and emergency management program at Vancity.