The nature walk reflects partnerships: O’Neill | Community
Sally O’Neill says she feels lucky to be a partner of the Pictou County Municipal Recreation Coordinators.
O’Neill represents Active Pictou County and has worked with others to organize a nature walk.
The Pictou County Group consists of two representatives from the Municipality of the County of Pictou: Recreation Coordinator Cindy Fraser and Active Communities Coordinator Clare Steele. They are joined by Active Living Coordinator Veronica Deno from New Glasgow, Recreation and Parks Coordinator from Pictou Michelle Young, Active Community Living Coordinator Noah Delorey from Stellarton, Parks and Recreation Coordinator from Trenton. and Ice Rink Manager Craig Murray, and Recreation, Culture and Recreation Coordinator Michael Thompson of Westville.
Rae Gunn, Highlands Regional Director of the Communities, Sports and Recreation Division of the Department for Communities, Culture, Tourism and Heritage, is also in attendance.
The group worked with Janelle Clyke and Faun Logan Young to lead the march.
Clyke recently received her credentials as a Hiking Leader from the Outdoor Council of Canada, while Young is a Parks Canada Youth Ambassador.
âIt’s a recognizable standard in outdoor leadership,â said O’Neill, referring to Clyke, who is also a graduate of the Nova Scotia Community College recreation program. âJanelle and Faun are passionate about bringing diversity to outdoor recreation. They live this example and we are fortunate that they share their passion and knowledge.
Active Pictou County is the lead partner of the Pictou County Trails Association, the Pictou County Multicultural Association, the Pictou Landing First Nation and the Y Reach program for newcomers.
âWe are able to provide support for the training and this community event,â she said.
O’Neill described how Active Pictou County created a proposal to support the Nova Scotia Diversity and Community Capacity Fund. The Department of Communities, Culture, Tourism and Heritage oversees the fund, the purpose of which is to fund nonprofit and voluntary organizations that support diversity and underserved Nova Scotians.
âOne of the best things about this event is that it aims to help members of Black, Indigenous and Other Colored Communities (BIOCC) enjoy the outdoors, which has a tradition of bringing a special space. white, âshe said. âIt’s a friendly walk at an easy pace to explain nature during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Even with the color of the leaves gone, nature never disappoints. There is always something to explore.
O’Neill said municipal recreation coordinators have been critical to the success of Active Pictou County.
âWe come together every month to collaborate and share resources, support each other and provide quality physical and recreational activities to the people of Pictou County,â she said. âThe group is extremely important. We are a group of colleagues who have done a good job. They are important colleagues that I have turned to for advice over the years.
The equipment partnership is one example, she said. Another is how active an increasing number of older people have become.
âWe are doing very well,â she said. âWe have a very active population over the age of 55 (in Pictou County). They are active. They are social. They do stuff.
O’Neill also referred to Make Your Move, a provincial pilot program that provided funding to Pictou County and two other communities in Nova Scotia: Amherst and South Shore.
âThe goal is to extend it to the whole province,â she said.
She said more people will become active when they realize that activity doesn’t have to be high-end or strenuous.
âIt’s about reframing the way we become active, to remove the weight of unrealistic expectations,â she said. âIt’s a liberating thing and fosters the opportunities that are here in Pictou County. “