On Tuesday, September 13, the Town of Sylvan Lake held their monthly Interagency Meeting.
The event is designed to help network organizations from in and around the Town of Sylvan Lake in order to better work together. It is also an opportunity to share success stories and to limit the amount of overlap of work between organizations working in similar fields.
Organizer from the Town of Sylvan Lake Family and Community Support Services [FCSS] Alissa McDonald was happy to see a turnout of over 30 people on this day.
“These meetings have been going on for many years,” she said. “It’s a time for these organizations to get together and talk about things and our community as a whole and how we can work together and share ideas and not duplicate things.
“Try and figure out what our next door neighbors are doing.”
She added that the meetings usually have around 20 attendees, so having 30 was an exciting improvement.
“It’s constantly growing,” she said. “I’m getting emails all the time asking if they can come and join interagency and find out what it happening in our community. It’s a great way for all the organizations to talk about what we are doing so that we know what is going on and it affects things like our Social Master Plan for example.”
For each Interagency Meeting, a keynote speaker will be given some extra time to discuss a key issue in the community, followed by a roundtable where each attendee has the opportunity to discuss what their organizations are currently doing in the community.
Giselle Campbell from Lakeview Parent Link Early Learning Centre and Supervisor for National Child Day spoke to the group on this day, discussing the importance of National Child Day and that they are currently forming committees around organizing for the event. This year, the theme for National Child Day is the “Right to Belong”.
The discussions following the roundtable are just as important as the meeting.
“It gives us access to the agencies and context and we can connect people together at the right time,” McDonald said. “During our Interagency Meetings for example, a lot of people will say ‘oh let me talk to you about that after’ or ‘how can we work together’.”
“Its about what we can do for our community to make it better,” she added.
She added that if time allows, the group will often discuss trends and issues in the community in order to have a strong pulse of what is happening in Sylvan Lake.
If you would like more information about the Interagency Meetings or you would like to attend, you can contact McDonald at firstname.lastname@example.org.
McDonald added that she was “so thrilled to see the number of organizations here represented today.”