The Good Neighbours Committee is a partnership between District of Vanderhoof, the Saik’uz First Nation, Regional District Bulkley Nechako, Area ‘F’, School District 91, College of New Caledonia and the Vanderhoof Chamber of Commerce that continues to do work in the community supporting Welcoming Communities, inclusion, diversity and anti-racism projects.
They are excited about the opportunity to welcome Ellie Sampson as the new Welcoming Communities Coordinator.
Sampson states that she is thrilled to be taking on this new position as the Welcoming Communities Coordinator. She looks forward to working with and meeting all of the people who have worked long and hard with the Welcoming Communities and Good Neighbours initiatives.
She started the position near the end of August but the project has been going for quite some time.
“One of my duties is to try and connect to any new immigrants to the community as well as try and help support services in the community become aware of the needs of local immigrants and how we can make the welcome and inclusive in the community,” said Sampson.
The Good Neighbours Committee believes that this position is an excellent fit for Sampson and her many and varied skills. She enjoys a challenge, enjoys meeting and greeting people of all ethnicities, and values the community. Previous co-workers and program participants have found her to be open minded, supportive and approachable. She states that she is organized, reliable and enthusiastic as well as being very excited to be doing work that will promote and develop a vision of Vanderhoof as a welcoming and inclusive community.
Sampson is looking forward to meeting the challenges and expectations of this project and bringing increased awareness and inclusion of new immigrants to our community.
One of the items that Sampson is working on is the development of a list of interpreters.
Sampson would like to encourage anyone who speaks another language to make contact with her.
Sampson initially came to Vanderhoof in 1975, in route to Fort St. James and Tezzeron Lake; to visit with one of her life-long friends who lived up that way at that time. She traveled back to this area numerous times since then, including a stint of tree planting in the Corkscrew Creek 200 road area in 1978.
Sampson and her family lived in Vanderhoof throughout the 90s. At that time she worked as a self employed contractor delivering a variety of pre-employment skill development programs and support services to local employment seekers.
Having returned to Vanderhoof a year ago, after nearly a 13 year absence, one of the first community events Sampson attended as a newly returning resident was the Welcoming Communities Dialogue last fall.
“I was extremely impressed with the efforts of everyone in attendance that evening and I left feeling welcomed and included and excited with Vanderhoof again,” said Sampson.
This past year Sampson has been working for the College of New Caledonia delivering The Next Steps for Youth Skills-Link program. This work provided her with the opportunity to reconnect with community, with many people and re-establish herself as a service provider.
Good Neighbours is also currently looking for business owners and employers to sit on a Good Neighbours Committee sub-committee, specific to Welcoming Communities; if anyone is interested or would like more information, call.
Sampson can be reached, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 9:00-3:30
At the Neighbourhood space: 250-567-4879 or CNC Cellular: 250-570-9084
Look for bulletins, information notice and news about Welcoming Communities activities and events on the blog, www.goodneighbours.wordpress.com.