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About Us

Pandora’s Collective, based in Metro Vancouver, British Columbia, is dedicated to promoting literacy and self-expression in the community. We are organized into five areas of operation - Outreach, Community Programming, Awards Programming, The Summer Dream Literary Arts Festival and Resources & Services. With the ambitious mandate ‘Promoting the Arts That Inspire the World to Take Notice of Itself’ the collective was founded in June 2002 by poets Bonnie Nish and Sita Carboni and is now a Registered Charity. Striving to provide a safe and inspiring environment for writers of all ages we promote the literary arts as a healthy tool for self-expression and act as a valuable resource for writers and readers in Metro Vancouver. We hope to motivate individuals into embracing literacy while at the same time help them to build their sense of community and self-esteem.


Outreach Poetry Workshops

- With adults going through drug and alcohol rehabilitation at Pacifica Treatment Centre (Ongoing)
- With children and teens at Inner City Schools (Ongoing)

Global Outreach

- Loonie Backpack Drive to raise funds for Sierra Leone and/or Zimbabwe in collaboration with Connie Linder of Insight Creative Communications and Doug Ante of Rotary International.
Poetry Workshops for the General Public

- At libraries, community centres, schools and festivals in Greater Vancouver (i.e. The West Coast Poetry Festival, North Shore Writers Festival, The Port Moody Arts Centre, The Vancouver Public Library Summer Book Camp, Richmond Library, etc.)
Lunch Hour Series

- The Lunch Hour Series is a weekly performance and workshop hour for students of South Lands Elementary Local artists, writers and musicians bring their expertise to the school.


Twisted Poets Literary Salon

- Poets of all levels are welcome to bring their best, favourite, newest and/or oldest poems and share in an evening of literary surprises.

Word Whips @ The JCC
Word Whips - The North Shore Edition
Word Whips By The Water

- These three events offer an opportunity for individuals to write in a group setting. We provide writing exercises and the opportunity for attendees to share what they have just written, whether it be poetry, prose, comedy writing, dialog or simply train of thought.

Book Talks - Book Club

- This event helps to promote a love of literacy. We will be discussing a preselected book each month, with the occasional session reserved for a discussion on a theme. Bring your favorite passages, points of interests, and share your reading experiences with us. Each person is responsible for either borrowing or buying their own copy to read.

Poetry Readings

- Pandora’s Collective has organized poetry readings in the community for such events as The Eastside Culture Crawl, Van Dusen Garden’s Art Days and the Roundhouse Community Center’s Community Day. Emerging and established poets from the community are brought together to participate in these events.



- Scholarships are awarded annually. Children and teens receive enrollment into the Vancouver Public Library Summer Book Camp. Adults receive enrollment into a creative writing continuing education course at a local college or community centre. To be eligible an individual must have participated in a Pandora’s Collective workshop.

Annual Poetry Contests (with categories for children, teens and adults)

- Hibernating With Words
- Kisses and Popsicles Spring Poetry Contest
- The Summer Dream Poetry Contests


 - The Summer Dreams Literary Arts Festival is an annual, engaging, outdoor festival established to raise public awareness regarding the on-going literary events, programs and resources available in Metro Vancouver, BC.  For schedules, participants and sponsors visit our festival page.


Event Listings

- Community events related to the literary-arts are listed on our web site as press releases or ongoing events. Event organizers can submit their promo material for posting free of charge.


- Community press releases and Pandora’s Collective updates are also sent out weekly to our email list serve. This is a free service we offer to the writing community. Event organizers can submit their promo material for this service to blnish_pandoras@yahoo.ca.


- Our web site has extensive links to literary resources (i.e. publishers, markets, writers' groups, contests, organizations, festivals, youth resources and markets, schools, writers in the community, etc.). We also have a section for inspiration showcasing links to other web sites that feature art, music, dance, etc.

 Members Directory

- Provides members with the opportunity to have a their photo and a link to their email and/or website.

Soirees and Retreats

Pandora’s Collective hosts regular gatherings for writers.
- Soiree attendees can exchange ideas, expertise and contacts while enjoying a potluck buffet.
- Retreats bring writers to inspirational locations to motivate and facilitate their writing through exercises, free writing and sharing.


Pandora’s Collective works cooperatively with many groups such as The World Poetry Reading Series, Vancouver Poetry House and The Vancouver Public Library in order to help foster a love of the written and spoken word.

The intended beneficiaries of our events and programs are children, teens and adults in Greater Vancouver with an additional focus on individuals in need (those with low-incomes, youth in crisis, individuals going through rehabilitation, immigrants, etc).


1. The name of the society is: Pandora’s Collective Outreach Society.

2. The purpose(s) of the society is (are):

a) To facilitate poetry workshops/programs within communities (e.g. classrooms, hospitals, transition houses, rehabilitation centres, and other venues) to increase literacy and present poetry as a communication tool promoting self-expression and self-esteem

b) To raise personal, social, and global awareness through the creation of poetry and the arts, collaborating and working together.

c) To raise money for literary scholarships and programs.

d) To promote poetry and the arts (e.g. open mics, contests, interviews, poets directory, web publishing, event listings, and the publication of anthologies showcasing emerging poets).

For a list of all our work - by date and category - please refer to our History