The Discourse provides community-powered journalism to underserved communities.

What we do.

Local news is good for democracy. But with the collapse of community newspapers, many people canโ€™t find in-depth journalism that accurately reflects their communities and lives.

  • ๐Ÿ™Œ๐Ÿผ

    A new model of community-powered journalism.

    By providing in-depth journalism accountable to diverse communities, we are contributing to a more equitable democracy.

  • ๐Ÿ’ช๐Ÿฝ

    Growing independent, local media.

    The Discourse builds local digital news products that bring communities together.

  • ๐Ÿ‘Š๐Ÿพ

    Deep Dives.

    The Discourse produces collaborative reporting projects with media partners to investigate issues that matter to our community members.

  • ๐Ÿค

    Editorial consulting.

    The Discourse offers consulting and editorial services to empower others to serve their communities with in-depth journalism.

Our work.

A drawing of the Paisley Place site plan shows much green space preserved and a unique community feel
Nanaimo Vancouver Island

Housing Gabriola: Amid setbacks, housing society says it’s ‘disappointed but not deterred’

From permits to funding, the barriers to getting the Paisley Place affordable rental complex off the ground have been many.
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penelakut island
Cowichan Valley Vancouver Island

By listening, โ€˜you can help us with the pain.โ€™

Penelakut Elders led a virtual listening circle on healing from residential โ€˜schools.โ€™
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
A street sign displays Paisley Place the site of a future affordable housing project.
Nanaimo Vancouver Island

Housing Gabriola: This group of citizens is building an affordable housing complex from the ground up

On this small Gulf Island, a proactive community spirit is helping solve the local rental affordability crisis.
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A group of protesters are being arrested by RCMP officers on a logging road in the Fairy Creek watershed area.
Vancouver Island

Independent journalists fought for their right to report on Fairy Creek โ€” and won

A July 20 court ruling directs RCMP to respect journalistsโ€™ rights to witness arrests at Fairy Creek.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
clean drinking water

The Lhooskโ€™uz Denรฉ village near Quesnel celebrates clean drinking water

Community worked with UBC and RESEAU Centre for Mobilizing Innovation to develop sustainable water source.
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West Shore

Loss in court highlights need for mining reform, Highlands group says

In a recent decision regarding a Highlands rock quarry permit, a B.C. Court of Appeal judge acknowledges the limitations in current legislation to consider climate change. SEO: Highlands
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Vancouver Island West Shore

New RapidBus strategy aims to address West Shore transit woes

Two weeks after The Discourse reported on West Shore transit solutions, BC Transit announced a RapidBus strategy that will see its flagship route run between the West Shore and downtown Victoria.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
Dave Spirit Wolf Bodaly stands in front of the Stiil'nep Welcome Portal as he tells The Discourse readers the meaning of each figure.
Nanaimo Vancouver Island

Understanding Stiilโ€™nep, where the โ€˜water runs deepโ€™

Snuneymuxw Knowledge Keeper Dave Spirit Wolf Bodaly helps Nanaimo residents decolonize their understanding of so-called Departure Bay.
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Sarah Webber stands beside her vehicle on Nanaimo Lakes Road where her car theft took place.
Nanaimo Vancouver Island

Analysis: People living on the streets are struggling. Their neighbours are too.

A lack of investment in the necessities of life, from health care to housing, has left residents of Nanaimo to 'pick up the pieces.'
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
maple bay fire July 7 2021 Duncan
Cowichan Valley Vancouver Island

Reporterโ€™s Notebook: Fire at 1580 Maple Bay Road

โ€˜The idea of a forest fire is terrifying to me. One on our sacred mountain is even more terrifying, if that's at all possible,โ€™ writes Jared Qwustenuxun Williams
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CMHA Cowichan Warmland House
Cowichan Valley Vancouver Island

Probation lifts for Canadian Mental Health Association’s Cowichan branch

โ€œWe seem to be paddling together and going in the right direction,โ€ executive director Lise Haddock says.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
Vancouver Island West Shore

โ€˜Make room for everyone:โ€™ Why density could be key to liveability in Langford

Developments like My Belmont in Langford are part of the answer to ongoing growth pressures, an expert says.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
Philip McLachlan
Cowichan Valley West Shore

Meet Philip McLachlan, the newest member of The Discourse team

โ€˜Something I have learned about each community I have lived in is just how important local journalism is, for a multitude of reasons.โ€™
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
Royal Roads rainbow pride crosswalk
West Shore

Strength in diversity: Royal Roads paints Pride crosswalk in celebration of inclusivity

Inspired by Colwood high-school students, the university responds to hate with love.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ
A group of people sit on the ground surrounded by police vehicles near the Caycuse camp of Fairy Creek.
Vancouver Island

Are the Fairy Creek blockaders protesting legally?

We're answering reader questions as part of our Fairy Creek pop-up news coverage.
Read more ๐Ÿ‘ˆ๐Ÿฝ

What people are saying.

“So often in todayโ€™s information-saturated world, I skim read. I approach your stories differently, as they bring me closer to the people in my community. I set aside quiet time to let your words sink in.”

Pamela Williams
Community member, The Discourse Cowichan

“This article makes me so excited for the future. I feel a sense of awakening and reassurance that maybe weโ€™re headed towards a positive future.”

Deepak Sharma
Community member, The Discourse
The Discourse

About us.

The Discourse is a digital news media company based in Vancouver B.C. We provide community-powered journalism to underserved communities. We currently operate digital media serving the Cowichan Valley, southern Alberta, Francophone Quebec and Indigenous communities in the Okanagan Valley and Vancouver Island.

We were founded by three journalists in 2014 to experiment with new forms of news. Since then, our team has been producing award-winning collaborative journalism that privileges diverse perspectives, is driven by the pursuit of truth, and creates positive change in underrepresented communities.

In 2017, we began developing a new business model for providing in-depth local news. Supported with startup funding from value-aligned partners, investors, family and community members who became owners in our company through an equity crowdfunding campaign (plus a lot of bootstrapping), we launched our community-powered platform The Discourse in 2018.

We now operate The Discourse, IndigiNews and La Converse.

Our reporting team in the Okanagan and our child welfare, education and health reporters on on Vancouver Island are funded in part by the Government of Canada, through the Local Journalism Initiative.

๐Ÿ‘‰๐ŸพRead the 10 principles that guide our business and editorial decisions.

Local Journalism Initiative
McConnell Foundation
Media Lab OFC
Marigold Capital
Inspirit Foundation
Facebook Journalism Project