Boreal Action is a grassroots environment and social justice group.

Making An Ethical Living Workshops

Community Directed Development Workshops

for Activists and Green and Holistic businesses

shifting the paradigm while making an ethical living

Thank-you to all concerned. Participants who signed up will soon be emailed a short feedback survey designed to direct our next steps toward community building workshops

(scroll down to the program)


September 22 – 25th, 2011

at the A-Zone

91 Albert Street

Winnipeg, Manitoba

presented by The Boreal Forest Network, Marketing for Hippies and the A-Zone

 We recognize that it can be difficult to approach the marketing and “business” side of shifting the capitalist paradigm while we still have to make a living.

 These workshops will offer an opportunity to shift our attitudes about promoting our campaigns, services and products in an a way that doesn’t offend our ethics, targets the right people and gets results.

 The principals are the same, whether you are an activist or an alternative business person with a vision. There are many links that can be made between us to the benefit of all.

 The Boreal Forest Network has always enjoyed creating and nourishing collaboration. We have hosted annual capacity building development workshops, with a cross cultural activists focus, in Hollow Water First Nation, since 2005. This year we agreed to expand our approach to include alternative, green, locally owned small businesses, such as our fellow A-Zone co-op members, at Mondragon (worker owned, vegan restaurant, radical book store and organic grocery) the bike courier business we share space with and other like minded community members.

 Our approach is to share what we`ve learned through experience with a participatory, peer skill share approach.

 We are delighted to welcome “Marketing for Hippies“ guru, Tad Hargrave, to Winnipeg to share his extensive knowledge about green and holistic marketing. He, not only, knows his subject, his presentation untangles much of the mystery of marketing and takes the sleaze out of money making.

 We are learning from each other in this setting and the networking opportunities will be invaluable.

Project Background

The local activist community has identified a need to build capacity through skill sharing and development workshops on effective outreach and marketing tactics, media and communications strategies, fundraising and development. Much of the content translates to the goals of green, alternative businesses who share many of our goals and philosophies.

The Boreal Forest Network (BFN) has an extensive, long term, campaign background and experience in the delivery of workshops on these subjects. We are planning this series of workshops to meet the expressed needs of the Winnipeg based collective, the A-Zone, which will be open to local groups, alternative businesses. musicians, artists and individual activists. Most of these sessions will be offered free of charge, with some pay as you can workshops. No one will be excluded.

BFN joined the Albert Street Autonomous Zone Co-Op, when we moved into the collective space, in the fall of 2010. It is through meetings of the member groups that we identified this community need and agreed to adapt our summer program to meet it.

We have modified our plan for the annual Camp Manitowabi, usually held at Raven’s Creek, in Hollow Water First Nation to include a two part program, consisting of one evening and three days of open programs at the A-Zone, 91 Albert Street, in downtown Winnipeg.

Our project was originally developed to build capacity and skill sharing between activists and Indigenous communities. Our goal is to include this element in this urban workshop series.

The Albert Street Autonomous Zone

The Albert Street Autonomous Zone (or A-Zone) was founded in the Fall of 1995, in a three-story heritage building at 91 Albert Street in the Exchange District of Winnipeg.

In 1995, the A-Zone was founded with the express purpose of bringing together a diverse, but inter-connected array of people and organizations committed in very broad terms to social justice — whether this be feminist organizations, indigenous organizations, grassroots solidarity and human rights groups, anarchist book clubs, prisoner solidarity groups, or alternative worker-run businesses.

The A-Zone membership has changed over the years. but the principles underlying the building and space remain the same. In particular, the A-Zone is committed to helping build left leaning, community, and worker-run organizations — in order to contribute to the growth of self-sustaining infrastructure for the activist community, and for future generations. A critical component of this is supporting organizations that consciously attempt to eliminate hierarchies and divisions of labour based on, among other things, colour, class, gender, and knowledge — regardless of the particular focus and emphasis of the group. The A-Zone has invested directly in such community economic development and radical infrastructure by offering massively-subsidized rents to fledgling organizations committed to participatory economic and revolutionary principles — at least, long enough to help such organizations or workers’ collectives get started. Organizations such as Mondragón Bookstore & Coffeehouse, Arbeiter Ring Publishing, G-7 Welcoming Committee, Natural Cycle, and Dada World DataProductions have all benefited from initial A-Zone subsidy in this respect, particularly in their early months and years. For the most part, these organizations have also remained core members, comrades, and allies of the A-Zone going into its second decade of existence.

About the Boreal Forest Network

The Boreal Forest Network is a non-profit environment and social justice campaigning organization. We have a mandate to work to support Indigenous Peoples community led campaigns to protect their traditional territories. BFN is a grassroots group with a long standing relationship with the international, pan-boreal, Taiga Rescue Network, which is made up of campaigning organizations across the northern boreal forest region.

BFN director, Susanne McCrea, comes to activism from a media background where she worked both as a reporter and in advertising. It was this that drove her to activism, in fact. She felt there must be a better way to use her skills. She offered them to the media savoy Greenpeace Canada, where she spent ten years publicizing campaigns, working on media for direct action and assisting with development workshops for national staff. She, also, raised an annual budget of about $300,000, entirely in donations from individuals.

She has done promotions for touring arts groups, like the National Ballet and the Peking Opera. freelance advertising (back in the pre-activist days), has taught communications at Red River College and assisted with the Shaking the Tree activists program at the University of Manitoba.

She has been a campaigner with BFN for ten years and has worked to build community coalitions throughout the last twenty.

She is excited to pass along skills that will benefit her community and to further build networking opportunities among like minded folks.

Marketing for Hippies

Tad Hargrave is a hippy who developed a knack for marketing.

Despite years in the non-profit and activist world, he finally had to admit he was a marketing nerd and, in the end, he became a marketing coach for hippies. Maybe it was because he couldn’t stand seeing his hippy friends struggle to promote their amazing, green and holistic projects. Maybe it was because he couldn’t keep a 9-5 job to save his life.

Whatever the reason, for almost a decade, he`s been touring his marketing for hippies workshops around Canada bringing his refreshing and unorthodox ideas to conscious entrepreneurs and green businesses to help them grow their organizations and businesses without selling their souls. Over the years, he has become recognized as a leader in the wider movement towards green and local economies.

This all feels like a minor miracle as Tad spent his early marketing days learning and applying some very inauthentic, high pressure, extremely gross and pushy marketing approaches. This has made him suuuuper allergic to these kinds of approaches because he discovered they made him feel slimy (even in personal friendships), he didn’t sleep well and he’s very sorry to all those people he spoke with back in the day. After a decade of unlearning and unpacking that whole scene – he now feels ready and able to help other people find ways to market that feel wonderful.

He’s also considered a pioneer and leading thinker in the field of `Hub Marketing` and is puttering on a book about it’).

 RSVP appreciated so we can plan for room set up and meals


Evening of Thursday September 22 – 7-10pm (come early for free soup and bread from Mondragon)

Tad Hargrave Marketing for Hippies 

pay as you can (really) Suggested fee $1 – $40 you decide what it’s worth and what you can afford at the end – no pressure, no strings attached.

September 23, Friday Day 1-4pm

Marketing Session with Tad and Susanne – also pay as you can suggested $1 – $40 at the end. 

geared toward activists but drawing the parallels between activist fundraising and marketing a business,(product or service) – open to activists, alternative businesses, musicians, artists

Presentation followed by break-out sessions and report back.

soup and bread by Mondragon by donation – 5-6pm

Building community facilitated by the A-Zone collective  – 6-8pm

free. donations accepted

Saturday, September 24  10am-12pm

open circle

Direct Action, facilitated by activist Dave Nickarz, Sea Shepards

Dave speaks from personal experience and shares some great video footage of actions on the high seas.

free, donations accepted.

Soup and bread by Mondragon by donation – 12-1pm

Surviving and Thriving in an Alternative World Panel 1-4pm

Kristen Andrews from Ragpickers Anti-fashion Emporium. the Flaming Trolleys, Murder City Roller Derby Queen and community events organizer, Jaclyn Marquis of Arbutus Clothing, Jesse Green, musician who recently toured with Buffy St. Marie and StrongFront Productions, Eton Harris, Mondragon, Susanne McCrea , twenty one years of activism, and Nathan Zahn of the Boreal Forest Network.

circle format

Long timers tell their stories followed by discussion.

If you have a product to sell – cd – or campaign material to share you are encouraged to bring it.

Child care will be available for this session (BorealKids art session in the building). Please RSVP

free, or by donation

Sunday, September 25

Come early and enjoy a fabulous vegan brunch at Mondragon – fundraiser for the A-Zone

circle discussion Self Care for Activists and Alternative Minded People, facilitated by Shannon (Mondragon) 11am-12:30pm

who cares for the caregivers

Beth Martens, and others tba

free, donations accepted.

Concurrent Workshops 1-5pm

DIY Know Your House 1-5pm

aka Where does my water – electricity – heat – come from….how do I fix it…when do I bring in an expert – Dave Nickarz, handy man to the environment, Sea Shepards ship fix it man, facilitating.

Tour of the A-Zone building, 91 Albert,  for illustration.

free, or by donation.

Writing and Messaging Workshop 1-5pm

Campaign messaging and writing for the media/psa’s/press releases/backgrounders/promotional materials, etc.

You are encouraged to bring something you are working on. If you have a laptop bring it. Or bring materials in print format.

Susanne McCrea facilitating. Susanne comes from a broadcast media backgound.  She`s worked in several radio stations and as a freelance writer. marketing specialist and arts publicist. She is a Journalism grad from Creative Communications at RRC where she has, also, taught communications. Susanne has conducted communications sessions as a quest at U. of M., and in her role as ED of the Boreal Forest Network at the annual capacity building Camp Manitowabi, in Hollow Water First Nation.

Special guest, cutting edge new media genius, Meg Rabbit,  artistic director and partner at Po Mo.

Check her out at

suggested $1-40

Finale networking soup and bread at Mondragon 5-6:30pm

Proposal Writing Mentoring Program or on camera media spokesperson training  will be announced here and held by pay as you can – sign up in advance – at a later date.

Thanks to Tall Grass Prairie Bakery for the generous bread donation!



  1. Hello Suzanne

    Would like to register for these series of workshops. As well, a member of the co-operative am working with, Front Step Research Co-operative, an inner city multi-stakeholder co-operative, only one of its kind, that does research using sacred stories and other cultural tools, etc. to give voice to inner city residents.

    What’s your phone no.?

  2. Didn’t realize that last comment was public – meant to be sent as a registration.

    Thx Suzanne

  3. Two of us would like to attend Thursdays session with Tad from 7-10, and Sunday’s writing presentation from 1-5.

    Does this mean we’re signed up? I didn’t see another method.


    • susanneboreal says:

      Thanks for your message, Sandra. I have posted my email for RSVPs today. I see it wasn’t posted before. You are registered as of now. If you have a minute you could send me the name of the other person coming with you and even a little bit about yourselves and your particular writing interests. Not required, we will discuss these at the workshop. Helpful to know, if you have a moment.
      Looking forward to meeting you both. Susanne at

  4. Shandra Hees says:

    Hello Susanne,
    I would really like to sign up for the thursday 7-10 workshop. Looking forward to it.

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