Engaging conversations

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NEW GLASGOW — Glasgow Square was bustling with positivity and problem solving last Wednesday evening during the second Engage & Empower session to help residents shape what they want to see in their town.

This session’s guest speaker was the former mayor of New Glasgow, Ann MacLean. She shared her past as a volunteer, eventually moving to the town council and then becoming mayor during an on-stage interview.

“This is a very engaged community,” said MacLean, sharing that she does worry that the community is becoming disengaged.

“Far be it from me to tell anyone to step up, because they already do.”

Following her interview, audience members turned to the people seated at their table to answer some questions proposed by the town. These questions prompted passionate discussions and the room was abuzz with the idea of how the community could be improved.

Some of the concerns that were shared by attendees were the aging population, downtown having some difficulties as years pass in regards to businesses, and intergeneration connections. With a lot of talk about the aging population in the community, it was evident as nearly every person at the session was in the above 40 crowd, with only a few participants under 40.

Some of the ideas that were suggested by the participants to help with community engagement and getting more people involved included making sure those under-represented or not typically engaged are part of the community conversation, developing more green spaces in the town as well as community projects like community gardens.

In total, there was nearly 80 who participated in the session hosted by the town.


Former New Glasgow mayor Ann MacLean talks about her experiences as mayor with Danny Graham of Engage Nova Scotia during the latest Engage & Empower session. (Brimicombe photo)

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