Vancouver, BC – On Wednesday, May 20th, 2015, German Consul General Hermann Sitz presented the Order of Merit (Bundesverdienstkreuz am Bande) to mover and shaker Beatrice Schreiber. The order, established in 1951, states:

Three Bundesverdienstkreuz Holders

“Desiring to visibly express recognition and gratitude to deserving men and women of the German people and of foreign countries, …, I establish the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany. It is awarded for achievements that served the rebuilding of the country in the fields of political, socio-economic and intellectual activity, and is intended to reward of all those whose work contributes to the peaceful rise of the Federal Republic of Germany”.

Ms. Schreiber immigrated to Canada in 1995, twenty years ago, where she set up her home in North Vancouver, helped establish the Bel Art Gallery with husband, Stefan and immediately became involved with the prestigious German Canadian Business Association. (GCBA)

It wasn’t long before Ms. Schreiber became the first women President of the GCBA and is currently serving her fifth term in this role. In 2005, she became the Chair of the German Canadian Heritage Plaza, a role she still plays today. She also supports other German-related organizations, such as the German Canadian Care Home, German Schools, the European Festival, SOS Kinderdorf and the St. Mark’s Church.

European Festival German Tent with German volunteersMy primary objective is to preserve and maintain the local German Cultural heritage and economic associations.” Ms. Schreiber states. Her volunteer work is also far from over.

Ms. Schreiber was the daughter of an art historian who studied textile design and business after high school, as well as worked as an haute couture designer and seamstress. She became the managing director of an international children’s clothing company and then the regional training manager of one of the leading fashion companies in Germany.

Her husband, Stefan Schreiber, then founded the Bel Art Kunstverlag and, shortly after, Ms. Schreiber decided to get involved in the family business. Bel Art Gallery successfully made the transition to North Vancouver and Ms. Schreiber set up varied exhibitions and opening with local and international artists, while raising two young children.

Beatrice with friends & familyMs. Schreiber is an inspiration to all who know her and whether she is hosting Homestay Students or fundraising for charitable events, she does so with grace and poise.   She is a both a role model and an inspiration who encourages the next generation to follow in her footsteps and we look forward to seeing what the next 20 years will bring.

To find out more about the German Canadian Business Association or to join, please visit:


Keynote Confirmed for North American Passive House Conference 2015

Tickets now available to NAPHN, CanPHI West and IPHA members

As you may know, CanPHI West are the proud hosts of this year’s North American Passive House Network conference in Vancouver, October 1-2.

Diane + Centre for Climate ChangeWe are excited to announce that Diana Ürge-Vorsatz – Director of the Center for Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Policy – will give the keynote presentation. Diana has been acknowledged for her contribution to the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and her keynote will be invaluable to understanding the role of Passive House in tackling climate change.

Joining Diana are world-class speakers who will share their knowledge and experience on advanced Passive House techniques, regulation and policy making, as well presentations for those new to Passive House.

Confirmed speakers:  
Dieter Herz, Herz & Lang – winners of the Passive House award for “Office and Special Use Building” in Germany
Tomas O’Leary, Passive House Academy – designer of the first Certified Passive House in the English speaking world
Jonah Stanford, NEEDBASED – award-winning designer of the first Passive House in New Mexico
Scott Kennedy, Cornerstone Architecture – currently designing two multi-family Passive House projects in Vancouver
Mark Bernhardt, Bernhardt Contracting – builders of Canada’s first market Passive House condominiums in Victoria

The conference includes a trade show dedicated to exhibitors in the Passive House market, project tours, socials, networking events, plus workshops and courses pre and post conference.

Tickets are available now to NAPHN, CanPHI West and IPHA members, and will be available to non-members from June 1st. Non-members can also register their interest on the conference website.

NAPHN15 brings together a global community of architects, designers, builders, suppliers, government officials and policy analysts to experience a world-class program of Passive House presentations and workshops, plus networking opportunities, social events and more in the City of Glass on the Pacific. – See more at:

The Canadian Passive House Institute (CanPHI) is a registered non-profit educational organization, which is 100% Canadian-owned and operated. We provide Canadians with the knowledge, tools, networks and confidence to design and construct buildings which meet the world’s highest level of energy efficiency, the international Passive House Standard. We’re actively training and connecting people and organizations who wish to radically improve the energy efficiency of new and existing buildings in this country, and we support Canadian industry in developing building materials and components of the highest performance and quality, as required by the Passive House approach.

3CSEP is an interdisciplinary research and educational center whose mission is to foster solutions to climate change and sustainable energy challenges, while advancing the implementation of development agendas. The center conducts its research at both the global and the regional/local levels, using selected regions and localities as case studies. 3CSEP also provides a platform for academic, outreach and educational activities in these fields.

Benefits of Passive House as seen on the website of the Canadian Passive House Institute Website from Vancouver, BC.

  • Much better indoor air quality  comfortable humidity levels, low CO2 levels because of comfort ventilation, with optimum ventilation flowrates calculated for each room
  • Increased thermal comfort – highest level of interior comfort of any building, with all surfaces equally warm (including the windows), no drafts (ever), no setbacks, no temperature swings
  • Superior sound insulation – extraordinary airtightness levels, triple-pane glass and thick insulation also provide superior sound insulation  Passive Houses are very quiet indoors!
  • Almost-unbelievable energy efficiency  8090% better than standard construction, with simply no need for a conventional heating system
  • More durable detailed and advanced design, better building components, proven building science
  • Almost no maintenance very simple mechanical systems compared to normal construction
  • Resilient  the most resilient construction standard anywhere, which maintains livable conditions even during power or fuel outages, relies very little on any mechanical systems
  • Sustainable  because of very low energy consumption and durable construction
  • Versatile Passive Houses can be built in any climate zone and applied to any building type, utilizing a wide variety of building materials and methods
  • Internationally embraced  already over 40,000 units in more than 35 different countries … with numbers growing rapidly from China to Abu Dhabi to Alaska


The Fundraiser

An evening of German cuisine with Michelin star chef Stefan Hartman at the newly opened German restaurant BAUHAUS in Gastown ( A special menu with favourite dishes from the German/Austrian/Swiss cuisine has been created for this special event. Start the evening with an appetizer and one Koelsch beer for only $15.

100% of the ticket sale will go to the Vancouver Westside German School (VWGS) for future program development, thanks to Uwe Boll, owner of the BAUHAUS and VWGS parent.

The Event

The Gates of Chinatown in Vancouver
On my way to the Bauhaus, wandering through Vancouver’s Millenium Gate of Chinatown down Pender Street. Turned left at Carrall. Two blocks later I landed at the 1 West Cordova Street.
Sideview of the Bauhaus Restaurant
The Bauhaus is situation on Cordova and Carrall Streets, or to borrow the description of their website: situated in the heart of Vancouver’s historic Gastown neighbourhood. The Restaurant opened Tuesday, May 5th, 2015, although they are restricting their visitors to private groups, such as our fundraiser.
Interior of the Bauhaus
I got there at 6:50 pm, and seemed to be the first one. This is why I was able to take a picture of the empty restaurant while the others were arriving. It was like being in Germany, so that is why it was almost disappointing when our waiter talked to us in English.
Our Menu at the Bauhaus
Here is our special menu that came out just for our fundraiser. The highlight was definitely the white asparagus imported from Germany, along with the Koelsch Beer from Koeln. I personally ordered the White Asparagus Soup and enjoyed every bite. As part of our fundraiser, we were also all given a Koenigsberger Klops, along with chopped red beets. Very traditional and delicious.
Bauhaus Full Restaurant
And finally, here is a picture of Uwe Boll, restaurant owner, and Christine Spreter, Principal of the Vancouver Westside German School, and friend at the Bauhaus last night.
Uwe Boll, Christine Spreter and Friend

Major Garage Sale on Saturday, May 2nd, 2015!

Toys at the St. Mark's Garage Sale9:00am – 2:00pm (rain or shine)

Contact: Brigitte Tin at 604-873-5827 or Kecia Boecking at 604-988-1356

Volunteers needed on and before sale. There are also tickets for the European Festival and tickets for the 40th Saengerfest available – just ask Kecia about this.

Books /magazines • Clothing (children/adults) • Tools • Dishes • Small Appliances • Toys • Stuffed Animals • Furniture • Kitchen Items • Pictures/Paintings • Sporting Goods • CDs/Tapes/Records • Electronic Items • Antiques & Collectibles • Knick-knacks • Computers • Plants • Etc.

The money from the sale goes towards supporting the projects and programs of the St. Mark’s Church. –

Items not sold will be donated to Union Gospel Mission or another charitable organization.

About the St. Mark’s Church

The St. Mark’s Church offers Sunday German Worship Services at 9:30 am and English Worship Services at 11:00 am. Pastor Hardo Ermisch and Pastor Kristina Breit work together with a terrific team of dedicated volunteers to make the Kingdom of God a reality in our shaken world. We have various Bible Studies to meet the personal needs of those who want to strengthen their faith. There are Ladies and Men’s Groups. We offer English Sunday School every Sunday in both Services. For children between 1-4 years we also offer German Sunday School every Sunday. On every third Sunday in month we offer German Sunday school for older kids.

30 Apr 2015
April 30, 2015

Westside German School Fundraiser!

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Important German School Fundraiser!

Bauhaus Restaurant in GastownSupport your community: *All welcome! This is NOT an event exclusively to VWGS families! This is an event for everyone – please be generous and share this link.

Thursday, May 7th, 7pm: Social at BAUHAUS
click here for ticket sale ($15/each)

Fyi: You can purchase tickets without a Karelo account, simply click on “buy now” at the end of the page descriping the event, followed by “continue without login” underneath the login/password fields.
For your communication with your social networks, here are the details again:

An evening of German cuisine with Michelin star chef Stefan Hartman at the newly opened German restaurant BAUHAUS in Gastown ( A special menu with favourite dishes from the German/Austrian/Swiss cuisine has been created for this special event. Start the evening with an appetizer and one Koelsch beer for only $15.

100% of the ticket sale will go to the Vancouver Westside German School (VWGS) for future program development, thanks to Uwe Boll, owner of the BAUHAUS and VWGS parent.

You are invited!

Pastor Manfred SchmidtMartin Luther Evangelical Lutheran Church
505 E 46th Ave, Vancouver, BC V5W 2A2
(604) 325-0550

Date & Time:
Sunday May 3rd 2015 @ 2:30 p.m.

Light catered late lunch to follow.

About Martin Lutheran Church: We are an Evangelical Lutheran church with services in English and German. Our services use traditional Lutheran liturgies.

As a member of the Canadian Association of Lutheran Congregations we are a confessional Lutheran church. We strive to teach and live in accordance with scripture and the Lutheran Confessions.

Beautiful Vancouver CityThe au Pair movements were first authorized between Canada, France and Germany in March, 1970 as a result of requests from the German Government, a private placement agency in France and a private placement agency in Toronto. They were subsequently expanded to include movements between Canada, Switzerland and Australia; however, the latter movement did not become operational due to delays in deciding upon placement responsibility.

While young women in France, Germany and Switzerland availed themselves of the opportunities offered as Au Pair in Canada, there was a lack of interest on the part of Canadian women. There was a strong demand for Au Pair in urban areas; however, this service was provided almost exclusively in the Toronto area by one private placement agency, which charged a fee for its services.

In 1975, it was decided to end the original program. Then, in 1990, an Au Pair Study Canada Program pilot project was established by External Affairs and the Canadian Coalition of In-Home Care, The pilot was based in Toronto and Ottawa and was administered by the Canadian Federation of Students. The coalition was not given this role due to its association with profit-making placement agencies. Because the pilot was a social-cultural exchange, it did not compete with the Foreign Domestic Movement. Pilot participants aged 18 to 28 learned about Canada and its culture by attending school and living with a Canadian family. In exchange for room and board and $80 a week, youth did light housekeeping and childcare not exceedingly a week maximum of 24 hours. External Affairs invested approximately $40,000 in start-up funding.
After one-year of operation, the pilot was discontinued. Only 100 youth had participated in the project. Failure was attributed to several things, including employers wanting more help than the 24 hour-weekly maximum and the lack of capacity on the part o the Canadian Federation of Students to recruit foreign youth.
Since then, there have been some representations to support an Au Pair Program in Canada. Further proposals would need to address issues that have arisen in the part, such as:

  • What type of protection against abuse and exploitation could be offered to participants in view of the lack of protection offered under provincial employment standards legislation for part-time domestic workers?
  • How and where would participants be chosen and by whom?
  • How would the problems which arose during the previous pilot project be avoided?
  • What fees would be charged to the youth participants and the Canadian families?
  • What costs would be covered by the federal government, by the Canadian families and by the participants?
  • How would an Au Pair program differ from the current live-in Caregiver Program?

    As the idea behind an Au Pair program is a cultural exchange, it requires other countries who would be willing to reciprocate and Canadians who are willing to go abroad and do this type of temporary part-time work. As noted above, this was the major downfall of the previous programs. However, should you wish to submit a proposal for an Au Pair Program, please send it to:

    Temporary Resident Policy and Programs
    300 Slater Street, 7th Floor
    Ottowa, Ontario
    K1A 1L1

    28 Feb 2015
    February 28, 2015

    German Canadian Care Home March Events

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    24.Februar 2015

    Liebe Freunde und Mitglieder des
    Deutsch- Kanadischen Hilfswerkes von BC,

    Zur Freundlichern Erinnerung:

    Programm für den Monat März:

    14. März Vortrag: “Heimat” – Was und wo ist das?“

    Eine sehr persönliche Frage im Angesicht der Globalisierung unseres Lebens.

    Pastor Hardo Ermisch
    “Ich lade zu einem zwanglosen Erfahrungsaustausch zu dem komplexen Thema “Heimat” ein. Jeder hat eine Heimat und ist deshalb auch kompetent mitzureden. Die Beziehung zur Heimat ist eine sehr persönliche Angelegenheit und deshalb für viele auch ein emotionales Thema. Uns wird die Frage beschäftigen, wie wir Heimat definieren. In diesem Zusammenhang werden wir auch der Frage nachgehen, ob der Begriff Heimat eventuell nur eine Utopie ist, wie der Jurist und Schriftsteller Bernhard Schlink in seinem Essay “Heimat als Utopie” zu bedenken gibt. Auch werden wir darüber ins Gespräch kommen, ob sich der Begriff Heimat u.U. für junge Menschen verändert hat, die sich als Europäer oder Global Citizen verstehen.

    Mein Ziel ist die Vielschichtigkeit dessen aufzuzeigen, was mit dem Begriff Heimat angesprochen wird, der ja durchaus auch ein politischer Begriff ist und in Vergangenheit und Gegenwart nicht nur die Gemüter bewegt hat sondern auch missbraucht worden ist und zu Auseinandersetzungen geführt hat.“

    14. März Film: Die Bücherdiebin

    Das Original erschien 2005 in Australien als Roman für junge Erwachsene und wurde sehr schnell zum Welt-Bestseller in über 40 Sprachen.Die Dreharbeiten fanden in Potsdamm statt. Am 13. März 2014 kam der Film bundesweit in die Kinos. Die Hauptrollen spielen Geoffrey Rush, Emily Watson, Sophie Nélisse und Heike Makatsch.

    Die Handlung spielt in Deutschland, vor und während des Zweiten Weltkriegs. Der Erzähler ist der Tod, der die Seelen der Menschen mitnimmt und dem sein Beruf zutiefst zuwider ist. Der Roman beginnt 1939 bei München mit dem neunjährigen Mädchen Liesel Meminger. Aus kindlicher Perspektive werden ihre entscheidenden Erlebnisse während der Zeit des Nationalsozialismus geschildert. Eine zentrale Rolle spielen die – zumeist fiktiven – Bücher, die Liesel entweder geschenkt bekommt, mitgehen lässt oder heimlich ausleiht: Aus all diesen Büchern steht das Buch düster über allen Geschehnissen.

    Wie immer servieren wir um 14.00 Uhr Kaffee, Tee und Kuchen.

    Das Programm (Vortrag oder Film) folgt um 14:30 Uhr.

    Gäste und Interessenten sind stets willkommen.

    Wir freuen uns über Ihre Spende, die die Kosten für Kaffee, Kuchen und sonstige Auslagen tragen hilft.

    Mit freundlichen Grüßen

    Waltraud Custer

    Outreach Coordinator
    German Canadian Benevolent Society of BC
    2010 Harrison Drive
    Vancouver, BC, V5P 2P6
    604-713-6562 cell 604-263-4232

    06 Feb 2015
    February 6, 2015

    German Canadian Care Home Events

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    Liebe Freunde und Mitglieder des
    Deutsch- Kanadischen Hilfswerkes von BC:

    Programm für den Monat  Februar:

    1. CaminoFebruar        Vortrag mit Bildern
      “Wann, Wer, Wieso Wandern sie den Jakobsweg ?“     Dr. Marie-Luise Ermisch

    Sie schreibt:”The Camino is considered to be one of the most important Christian pilgrimages of the Middle Ages, and to this day it continues to attract thousands of hikers, cyclists and horseback riders each year, with UNESCO even granting it World Heritage status in 1993.”

    In the summer of 2013, Marie-Luise Ermisch walked 479 kilometers alone through Spain on the Camino de Santiago. 


    1. Februar        Film
       “Der Hundertjährige, der aus dem Fenster stieg und  verschwand “ 

    Ein internationaler Bestseller, der Debütroman des schwedischen Journalisten und Autors Jonas Jonasson.

    Das Buch, die Hörbuchfassung (Otto Sander) und auch der Film ist witzig. Das Leben des 1ooJährigen wird sehr geschickt mit den historischen Größen seiner Zeit verknüpft.

    Parallel zu den Geschehnissen des Jahres 2005 wird die Lebensgeschichte der Hauptfigur  Allan  erzählt, wie er gegen seinen Willen in eine skurrile Kriminalgeschichte verwickelt wird. Gleichzeitig erleben wir, wie er in die wichtigsten politischen Ereignisse des 20. Jahrhunderts verwickelt wird, es aber immer wieder schafft sich aus allen ideologischen und politischen Verwicklungen herauszuhalten.

    Mal etwas anderes! Empfehlenswert! Viele haben das Buch gelesen.

    • Wie immer servieren wir um 14.00 Uhr Kaffee, Tee und Kuchen.
    • Das Programm (Vortrag oder Film) folgt um 14:30 Uhr.

    Gäste und Interessenten sind stets willkommen.

    Wir freuen uns über Ihre Spende, die die Kosten für Kaffee, Kuchen und sonstige Auslagen tragen hilft.

    Mit freundlichen Grüßen

    Waltraud Custer

    Outreach Coordinator
    German Canadian Benevolent Society of BC
    2010 Harrison Drive
    Vancouver, BC, V5P 2P6


    30 Nov 2014
    November 30, 2014

    20th Annual Holiday Gala

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    SOS Children’s Village in British Columbia

    Here is a short YouTube Video about this event:

    Douglass Dunn SOS Kinderdorf

    Douglas Dunn, Executive Director of SOS Children’s Village BC at the VIP reception

    Wolfgang Christl

    Longtime Member of the German Canadian Business Association

    Beatrice gives a speech

    Beatrice took the opportunity to give a speech and share a Nikolaus Poem

    German Chancellor speaking