When working with new partners, creativity, cooperation and community involvement are key ingredients for success. There is no cookie-cutter solution for the complex challenges many of us are tackling.
That’s why a primary focus of the recent Many Hands, Many Voices Conference on October 3-4 was on sharing stories of successful cross-sector collaborations. During the Community Sector Council’s 2-day conference at Membertou, 10 collaborative projects were invited to tell their stories and describe what worked and what didn’t.
As a design partner for the conference, Engage helped lay the ground for the CSC conference by inviting the storytellers and CSC staff to come together for a full day on September 12 at the Lochaber Community Centre near Antigonish. This gathering, which was modelled on Engage’s previous Connecting for Change events, was designed to build story-telling skills and provide opportunities for peer learning and networking.
At Engage we believe that, as a province, we already have much of the knowledge and expertise we need. We just need opportunities to connect and learn from each other. In the process, we start to uncover patterns of success, gaps that need to be addressed, and a common sense of purpose that adds fuel to all of our efforts.
On September 12th this sense of connection and shared purpose was palpable. We honed the process that would be used at the Many Hands, Many Voices conference, made new friends and shared a delicious meal.
A network of community leaders and changemakers continues to grow and broaden into new regions of the province. We’re excited about its potential and will continue to provide updates on the website, in blogs and podcast episodes.