2017 Community Projects

Community Capacity and National Parks in Scotland

National Parks in Western Europe are managed very differently than those in North America. Working with the Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park in Scotland, we explored the challenges of the Park Authority in promoting conservation, tourism, and economic and social development in one of the United Kingdom’s most spectacular natural and working landscapes. We focused on two community projects, both situated with the national park. We continued the work of a previous Acadia Community Development team in reconnecting the Luss Parish Church with its Parish and joined up with the villagers of Gartmore to help build a community playpark.

Strategic Plan Assessment with Glooscap First Nation

Students partnered with Glooscap First Nation and Glossop Ventures to develop an assessment of  the 5 year Action Plan that supported Glooscap’s 10 Year Strategic Plan. Students specifically measured whether or not Glossop had achieved goals established in the 5 Year Action Plan. This was presented in a score card fashion and presented to Chief and Council and Glooscap Ventures. 

Video Development for Nova Scotia Environmental & Sustainability Education Network

A team of seven students produced two minute videos describing the work of each of seven leading environmental education organizations in Nova Scotia in order to provide a snapshot of environmental education work in the province for the Nova Scotia Environmental Network and to support the promotion work of each organization. The organizations were: Divert Nova Scotia, Green Schools Nova Scotia, the Clean Annapolis River Foundation, the Halifax Adventure Earth Centre, Hike Nova Scotia's Re-Connecting with Nature Workshops, the Deanery Project and Nova Scotia's Young field Naturalists.

Youth Engagement in the Town of Windsor

The six students in this core term project defined early on that they wanted to develop a project that would be implemented and would support efforts to engage local youth.  After speaking with thirty-four youth from the local schools, and interviewing twelve youth support workers from Windsor and the surrounding area, the core term students developed a model for a mentorship program between Windsor youth and Acadia University students, called Acadia Youth Connection.  From the model the core term students wrote a manual, which will be used to implement this program in the fall of 2017. 

The aim of Acadia Youth Connection is to increase youth engagement in the Annapolis Valley.  Research shows that as youth age, their need for support and how they perceive support changes; by age sixteen, youth view their friends as more supportive than their parents, showing the need for peer support within a high school context (Shin, Daly, & Vera, 2007).  Mentorship programs have also proven to promote pro-social behaviours and be beneficial for both the mentee and the mentor (Randolph & Johnson, 2008; Spears, 2014).  This summer a similar project is being piloted by Allie Berry, one of the Core Term students who is now working for The Portal in Kentville.   For more information about this initiative, please contact: mary.sweatman@acadiau.ca