PICTOU — The Pictou County Chapter of Silent Witness has a ready-made use for the funds it has received from 100 Women Who Care Pictou County.
The local group received the funds at the most recent 100 Women Who Care event last Thursday at the deCoste Performing Arts Centre and plans to use the money to host a two-day conference on human trafficking for the sex trade.
Gail Clark, who represented on the group’s behalf, said the conference would be an opportunity to invite an expert to talk about the human sex trade, offer breakout sessions and a concluding event and pay for the food, venue and other costs associated with the conference.
Troy Greencorn, the deCoste Centre’s general manager, offered to discuss conducting the conference at the centre.
Clark’s address outlined how severe the human sex trade has become.
“The time has come to end the silence,” she said. “The human trafficking sex trade is thriving, and we need to take responsibility. This is about communities protecting the vulnerable members of our society.”
The Pictou County Army Cadet League and Summer Street were last Thursday’s two other presenters.
Guy Melanson presented on behalf of the Army Cadet League. His proposal was for the funds to purchase an eight-pack of canoes and trailers to be shared by local army cadets, as well as air and sea cadets and related groups.
“The army cadet program has changed greatly over the last few years,” Melanson said. He noted the leadership, time management and other disciplines that now accompany the traditional military training provided to young people.
Kate O’Farrell-Sutherland spoke on behalf of Summer Street and described how the money it received would be directed toward creating a drop-in centre at a dwelling recently purchased on East River Road. There would also be one-on-one therapy provided, as well as group sessions and a community liaison to help people access local services.
Babies to Boosters, New Leaf and the Pictou-Antigonish Regional Library will be the next nominees for the event at a time and date to be determined.
CHAD Transit, which received the previous award, shared information on how its Sunday Drive program is working. Executive director Danny MacGilliray said the program has been well-received.
“We want to thank you for helping us fight social isolation in Pictou County,” he said. “It’s working out well.”
The Pictou County Chapter of Silent Witness received the latest financial award from 100 Women Who Care Pictou County. From the left, front row are: Silent Witness members Gail Clark, Jane MacMaster, Jan James and Doreen Paris. Back row: Julie Cormier, Sharon Cheverie, Sally O’Neill and Trecia Schell. (Goodwin photo)