IAP2 Prairies Chapter has been busy hosting some exciting events and planning some for the near future.
On February 4th, we held our Annual General Meeting across the three cities – Winnipeg, Saskatoon and Regina. The evening consisted of two presentations:
- Paul Jordan – Public Participation: What I have learned as CEO of the Forks Corp
- Vicky Reaney – Actively engaging residents and stakeholders for Saskatoon’s Active Transportation Plan and Growth Plan to Half a Million
We had our largest turnout of members and were happy with the success of the cross province AGM! Following the presentations, guests were invited to stay and network.
We are pleased to announce our new executive committee:
- President – Trevor Joyal
- Vice President – Brock Feenstra
- Treasurer – Myrna Broadfoot
- Secretary – Samantha Mark
Other board members include: David Marsh, Denisa Gavan-Koop, Graham Dodds, Heather Kasprick, Lara Ludwig, Lawrence Baschak, Roslyn Kozak, and Sonia Busca Owczar.
As the Board, we are here to serve our members! We provide networking opportunities, a forum for P2 discussions, and are a community engagement resource for practitioners across the three provinces. On March 10th, we successfully hosted a lunch n’ learn (Building Relationships With Indigenous Peoples: A Parks Canada Perspective) in Winnipeg with 30 people in attendance. We are also looking forward to the “Hello May!” Regina Event being held on May 4th.
Please see our website for more details on upcoming events and updates!
On April 5, 2016 IAP2 BC hosted its first P2 Drinks social in at Spinnakers Pub in Victoria. A small group gathered after work to talk about current local trends and challenges engagement practitioners are experiencing. Aside from some free-flowing general conversation around the table, Lisa Moilanen came armed with a set of table topics for discussion.
One of the discussions focused on the need to ensure that people are not over-engaged. Yes, it’s possible, according to Kim Van Bruggen: “engagement” or “consultation” can become like buzz-words, tossed into a policy statement and gradually losing their meaning. Others said that a local government that “takes it to the people” too many times can be accused of being unable to take a decision. Another point raised was that the engagement loop needs to be closed, so people know their feedback has been received and considered.
IAP2 professionals need to continue to share what engagement really is and to ensure it is done as transparently and authentically as possible. We don’t want engagement to just be The Thing To Do, a catch phrase or a box to check off. It is a balancing act, particularly between the practitioners, clients, public and politicians to ensure the right techniques and tools are used. It is also important all realize the levels of the IAP2 spectrum and to make clear where a project fits on it.
Thoughts were documented to then be input to reflect the BC Voice at this year’s IAP2 North American conference.