Next week, 20 Memorial University researchers will board a charter plane bound for Nain to meet with community members and the Nunatsiavut Government.
Organized by Memorial’s Harris Centre of Regional Policy and Development, the opportunity is part of the centre’s ongoing series of regional workshops.
“Regional workshops are a chance for community stakeholders to meet with Memorial researchers on their own turf,” says Karen Follett, knowledge mobilization coordinator at the Harris Centre. “We believe a project has a better chance of being useful to a region if there is a sense of partnership right from the start.”
To kick-off the visit, all community members are invited to a free “Memorial Presents” public policy forum, New Adventures – Developing a Sustainable Tourism Industry in Northern Labrador, on Tuesday, April 20, beginning at
7 p.m., at the Nain Community Centre.
Dr. Edward Addo of Sir Wilfred Grenfell College’s tourism program will deliver the keynote address. Next, Dr. Addo and an expert panel, including Kristy Sheppard of the Nunatsiavut Government, and Judy Rowell of Parks Canada, will discuss tourism development in Northern Labrador, before opening the floor to community questions and comments.
The following day, the Memorial group will meet with invited community stakeholders for an interactive workshop. The session will begin with presentations from various departments and faculties about current research projects that are relevant to Northern Labrador.
In the afternoon, the community participants will bring forward their ideas for new projects to address the challenges and opportunities in Nain and the surrounding region. Those opportunities will then be returned to Memorial, assessed, and shared with relevant departments and researchers.
Part of the collaborative process is ensuring that each good idea is captured and assigned to a local contact who is involved right from the start.
“A strong local champion can make all the difference when it comes to making sure research knowledge makes it out of Memorial and into the community,” explained Ms. Follett.