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Community Change through Elections

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September 6, 2021

Community change happens in many ways and in our organization, we have 26+ staff who are making a difference in their communities every single day.

We have people who have founded agencies, worked as leaders in large organizations, volunteered and sat on boards, and others who have served for many years in front-line service delivery. Another meaningful way people in our organization aim to effect positive change is by running for public office.

During last summer’s provincial election, we had three staff members run for office: Jill Balser, then Project Lead at Turning the Tide was the Digby-Clare candidate for the Progressive Conservatives. Michael Carty, community lead with Turning the Tide, was the New Democratic Party candidate in the same riding. And in Dartmouth East, Community Director Tyler Colbourne was the NDP candidate.

As you may know,  Jill Balser won the seat in Digby-Clare, and is now the Minister of Labour, Skills and Immigration. Premier Tim Houston said, “Jill has everything it takes to be a great MLA – energy, compassion and a true desire to make life better for the people in her community.”

Others on our staff have run for office in past elections, including Shelley Fashan (Nova Scotia Network for Social Change), Matthew Cooper (evaluator, NL), and Charlene Boyce (content curator). Many of our staff have volunteered in political campaigns and organizations, applying their values and hopes for a better world into their civic engagement. 

While having political candidates in an organization might not be a traditional indicator of success or impact, it highlights once again how committed and engaged the staff of Inspiring Communities are to making a difference in their communities, their provinces, and the world.

Our work in systems change, social innovation, and collective impact moves through many different ways of knowing and being, and we recognize that no matter the political colours of our staff, they are committed to effecting positive change in their communities. 

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