Eight English-speaking groups meetup to exchange ideas

On Thursday, July 20, 2017, eight organizations representing English-speaking communities from around the region gathered in Foster, for a day of sharing ideas and knowledge. Coming from as far as Quebec City, and carpooling from Montreal and the South Shore, the organizations are all part of the Networking and Partnership Initiative (NPI), a program designed to support Quebec’s minority English-speaking communities in improving and maintaining their access to the full range of Health and Social Services.

Hosted by Townshippers’ Association, the day was organized by the Association’s agents for the Eastern Townships Partners for Health and Social Services Network – Debbie Bishop, Michelle Lepitre, Kate Murray, and Emily Prangley Desormeaux.

Meeting during the summer has become a tradition among the network’s organizations and they look forward to both the opportunity to visit the beautiful Eastern Townships, and to connect with various partners in the English-speaking community. The purpose is to allow these groups – whose primary goal is to increase and ensure English-speakers’ access to health and social services in their respective regions – to discuss current access to services in their areas, recent successes and challenges, and any new initiatives that might inspire others.

These gatherings are a great opportunity for organizations that share similar structures and mandates, practices and exchange ideas. For example, Townshippers’ was glad to discuss the strengths and weaknesses of its successful Health and Wellness Fair that took place in Knowlton on June 10, and other organizations shared feedback from their own recent events.

Great weather allowed the gathering to take place outside, which left everyone in good spirits, and some chose to spend the lunch hour walking (and talking!) in Foster’s lovely countryside. Maggie Severs, who has been on maternity leave since January and will be joining Townshippers’ again in October, even made a guest appearance with her young son, much to everyone’s pleasure.

Wanted: exceptional community members

The search is on for the 2017 YTLA and OT’s! The Young Townships Leaders are candidates who are aged 15-35 years old and are changing their communities, while the Outstanding Townshippers are candidates who have made exceptional contributions to the Townships English-speaking community. These two awards from Townshippers’ gives us a chance, as a community, to thank those who are making a difference.

Nominate someone you know by August 25.

Details posted at www.Townshippers.org/Awards or contact Townshippers’ offices.

For more on Townshippers’ Association and our activities, keep reading this column in the Brome County News and visit our website www.Townshippers.org. You can also follow us on Twitter @Townshippers and Facebook.com/Townshippers. Connect with Townshippers’ offices in Sherbrooke at 100 – 257 Queen, 819-566-5717, toll-free: 1-866-566-5717, or Lac-Brome at 3-584 Knowlton Rd, 450-242-4421, toll-free: 1-877-242-4421.

Published: About Townshippers column, Brome County News, Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Photo Credit: Townshippers’ Association

Photo Caption: Townshippers’ was one of eight organizations, all representing English-Speaking communities, that gathered recently in Foster for a day of idea and resource sharing. It’s one of many activities Townshippers’ is engaged in behind the scenes that helps to launch projects and activities like June’s health and wellness fair in Knowlton.