FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The University of Northern BC’s Community Development Institute opened a local office in Fort St. John today.
The Fort St. John office is a ground-breaking partnership between the City of Fort St. John and CDI to create and implement local strategies for economic diversification, community resiliency and social development. The local CDI office will be the first in-community office of the UNBC Community Development Institute. With staff on the ground in Fort St. John, the CDI will work in collaboration with industry, local businesses, non-profit and community organizations, First Nations, and all levels of government, to strengthen the community and transition the local economy to manage economic changes.
The Fort St. John CDI office will provide services to the community by:
- hosting educational events and workshops;
- facilitating community conversations and dialogues about local issues and opportunities;
- collaborating to develop and implement economic diversification efforts; and
- providing relevant research which will inform decision making and offer important data for business planning, grant applications, reporting and community evaluation.
Mayor Lori Ackerman stated, “Creating community is vital for so many aspects of our future. Fort St John’s growth requires that we think outside the box. Our City’s partnership with the CDI will add their experience and expertise to ours and enable a new level of community achievement and creation.
Marleen Morris, Co-Director, Community Development Institute, stated, “The CDI is very pleased to be opening an office in Fort St. John. Over the coming years, we will be applying CDI’s experience in research and community development with the creative energy and strengths of the people and organizations of the community to shape new possibilities for the future. Through our programs, courses, and events we will be opening opportunities for dialogue, learning, planning, and action on economic and community potential. We are looking forward to working here in Fort St. John.”
UNBC President Dr. Daniel Weeks stated, “UNBC researchers at the Community Development Institute are creating local solutions with global impact. This office in Fort St. John will enable UNBC to provide the expertise needed to expand opportunities for community sustainability.”
The CDI was established in 2004 with a broad mandate in community and economic development. They provide programs and services in four broad areas: community transformation and renewal, research, education, and dialogues and policy discussions.