Liz DeMattia

Nanaimo science society vying for social enterprise award

NANAIMO – Event will award more than $50,000 in cash and in-kind support to one of three organizations.

The Nanaimo Science and Sustainability Society is looking to emerge victorious in a Dragon’s Den-style competition Wednesday (May 20).

The society, which aims to inspire children to take an interest in science and sustainability, is one of three social enterprise finalists from Vancouver Island selected to take part in the 2015 Social Enterprise Catalyst Gala. According to Liz DeMattia, society executive director, it stands to win cash and in-kind support totalling $50,000-plus, if successful.

DeMattia said a coach, Jill Doucette, has been provided to assist with working on the pitch. She didn’t want to give away too much information on the presentation and how the money would be spent if the society won, as the two are related.

She said the presentation relates to “stepping stones” to get to the society’s long-term goal of a science centre in Nanaimo. It currently operates a science studio at Departure Bay Elementary School.

“I will discuss where [the society] started from, where we are currently and where we hope to go, with their help,” DeMattia said.

CBC show Dragon’s Den sees entrepreneurs making a proposal to a panel of judges in the hopes of securing money and they can be subject to intense scrutiny. DeMattia is hopeful she will be able stand firm under cross-examination.

“Our pitch coach has been working with us on how to answer questions and be ready for the hard questions of the judges, so hopefully I’m prepared … My understanding is that it will be similar to Dragon’s Den, but they might not be as mean,” said DeMattia.

The society will be up against Skookum Food and Coffee and Tofino Ucluelet Culinary Guild. Michelle Stilwell, B.C. Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation, will be among the adjudicators.

The gala will be held at Nanaimo’s Port Theatre. For information on attending the event, please visit

Just Posted

Nanaimo Theatre Group will start its season by staging a farce

Self Help follows married second-rate actors who become famous self-help coaches

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: School buses need seat belts

If I had a child in school, I would be insisting on seat belts in school buses, says letter writer

Nanaimo United forgoing soccer balls for snowballs

With soccer cancelled, snow fun day to take place at Beban Park on Saturday, Feb. 16

Man arrested in shooting at Nanaimo hotel pleads guilty to second-degree murder

Brandon Tyler Woody to be sentenced in late March in B.C. Supreme Court in Nanaimo

New museum exhibit presents Nanaimo mysteries

Nanaimo Mysteries exhibit unveils city’s fiction and even stranger facts

VIDEO: Canada’s flag turns 54 today

The maple leaf design by George Stanley made its first appearance Feb. 15, 1965

Beefs & Bouquets, Feb. 14

To submit a beef or a bouquet to the Nanaimo News Bulletin, e-mail

Dallas Stars pay tribute to Nanaimo woman who died of cancer

NHL team wore Arlene Forbes’s initials on hockey helmets last week

Eight cases of measles confirmed in Vancouver outbreak

Coastal Health official say the cases stem from the French-language Ecole Jules Verne Secondary

Plecas won’t run in next election if B.C. legislature oversight reforms pass

B.C. Speaker and Abbotsford South MLA says he feels ‘great sympathy’ for Jody Wilson-Raybould

Workshop with ‘accent reduction’ training cancelled at UBC

The workshop was cancelled the same day as an email was sent out to international students

Former B.C. premier Gordon Campbell accused of sexual touching

Accuser went to police, interviewed by Britian’s Daily Telegraph

Judge rules Abbotsford home must be sold after son tries to evict mom

Mom to get back down payment and initial expenses

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Most Read