Letter from the BRIDGS Chair

Dear Residents and Friends of Bear River:

I am so very happy to introduce you to a new source of information on the exciting civic renewal that is taking place in your village.

https://bridgsns.wordpress.com is a weblog created and maintained by enthusiastic volunteer Flora Doehler.

One of BRIDGS’ principle aims is to foster communication and cooperation toward common goals for your community, and this blog will serve as a convenient point for all to share and learn.

When you visit this site, you’ll find updates on our various projects including minutes from all BRIDGS meetings, images, links, and well, just about all you could want to know about this rural Canadian village’s successful efforts to reinvigorate itself. And as you finish your virtual tour, we invite you to join the on-line discussion by posting your comments on the village and its projects.

Please note too, that BRIDGS’ new e-mail address is linked to this site, and will now be: bridgsns@gmail.com

As you explore https://bridgsns.wordpress.com, please join me in thanking Flora Doehler for the proactive generosity she has demonstrated by suggesting, creating, and maintaining this valuable new resource.

Sincerely,
John Malmström
Chair, Bear River Innovation, Development & Growth Society (BRIDGS)

Advertisements

Executive Committee Report – Feb 08/07

BRIDGS
Executive Committee Report
February 8, 2007
Trading Post

Present:  John Malmstrom, Susan Malmstrom, Wayne Smith, Hal Theriault, Tim Wilson, Gerry Chute.

The meeting was called to order at 9:00 AM.

Bear River Pageant:  Susan gave Wayne a check for $11,500 for deposit to the Pageant account from Nova Scotia Tourism; and a check for $3,000 for deposit to the Pageant account from the County of Annapolis.  Digby has approved an additional $3,000 which has to be given final approval at their next meeting.  Hal gave Susan an invoice in the amount of $5,000 for writing, research and setting up the pageant.  All bills for the pageant need to be submitted by March 31.  MOTION: Made by Susan, seconded by Tim to proceed with work on the pageant and to pay all invoices hereto.  APPROVED.  We have a budget for costumes and props.  To find costume and set designers, we will put out a request for proposals, plus personally contact people in the village that we know have these skills.

Savings Account: John would like to set up an interest-bearing account for BRIDGS so that BRIDGS can tap the small amounts that this will yield from the funding that we receive as a slush fund for small operating expenses that are incurred.  MOTION: made by Wayne, seconded by Tim to set up an interest savings account for BRIDGS.  APPROVED. It was also suggested that the power to transfer funds from the checking to the savings account (and vice versa) should rest with the Treasurer.  MOTION: made by Susan, seconded by Tim that the Treasurer of BRIDGS will have the power to transfer funds between BRIDGS accounts.  APPROVED.

Annual Meeting:  the Annual Meeting of BRIDGS is scheduled for Wednesday, March 14.  This will be advertised in the Tributary, and posted in the Post Office.  The office that is currently up for election is that of Vice Chair.  This is a signatory position, as are the Chair and Treasurer (the Secretary has no signatory power).  It was suggested that the new constable of the Digby RCMP be contacted to see if she would like to attend as our special guest, since she is on record as someone who would like to support youth groups.

Youth Committee:  Gerry joined us this morning to report on the Youth Committee.
•    The fundraiser has been re-scheduled for Saturday, March 3, still at the Oakdene.  We need to fill the Oakdene that night, and we need to get the word out that we need more volunteers at the Youth Centre.  As m.c. that evening, Gerry will be talking about this and other issues throughout the evening.
•    We are still looking for two volunteers for the Centre, one to act as a fundraiser, the other to recruit and coordinate worker bees to cover the Centre’s hours.  At the end of April, we lose Sandy and Louise, so we have a tight deadline.  Susan is working on a small Wellness grant to get a fitness instructor for a few weeks, which might give Sandy and Louise a break for a few nights.  She will also get together with Hal to try and draft a grant proposal for a Centre coordinator through Service Canada.
•    There will be a Youth Centre meeting at 6 PM ahead of the regular BRIDGS meeting on February 14.
•    Sandy and Louise have forwarded a wish list to Gerry that we will go over at the next general meeting.

Meeting adjourned at 10:30 AM.

Minutes, November 8, 2006

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
November 8, 2006,
Changing Tides Restaurant (Trading Post Building)

Present: Cindy Harris, John & Susan Malmstrom, Hal Theriault, Don Rice, Tim Wilson, Gerry Chute, Wayne Smith, Rob Buckland.

1. Call to Order/Adoption of Agenda
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM.
MOTION to accept the Agenda. CARRIED.

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business: Everyone wished Hal a happy birthday.

Executive Committee Minutes: were read by Secretary Susan Malmstrom.

Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer Wayne Smith submitted a report for board approval; seconded by Cindy. ACCEPTED.

Youth Centre:
Report from the Youth Centre Task Force was delivered by Hal and Gerry:
• According to the local school bus drivers, there are 200 children in our area;
• There will be a new Youth Centre committee meeting on November 10. This committee will oversee the administration of the Youth Centre for the next 6 months and will try to meet with the volunteers on a bi-weekly basis;
• Some possible events to be explored are Christmas craft making and a seasonal concert;
• Hal has submitted a proposal to Annapolis County for operational funds. We will also forward a similar proposal to Digby. Other possible funding sources are Recreation Nova Scotia and Service Canada;
• Wayne said that the budget for the Youth Centre (when it is up and running) would be approximately $600/month;
• Wayne suggested that the mandate of what is offered at the Centre should come from the youth;
• Hal met with Linda Findlay of the Oakdene Centre. They would like to partner with the Youth Committee and BRIDGS on musical events and theatrical productions.

Village Meeting: John noted that the Village Meeting/Volunteer night has been scheduled for November 27th at the Oakdene. The Oakdene is allowing us to use the facility at no charge. BRIDGS will host the event. It will be an opportunity for all of the village organizations to talk about what has been accomplished this year, and what they plan for next year. Cindy and Susan are organizing the meeting.

Strategic Development Plan: Due to the re-structure of the RDA, there have been many delays to this, and we had to re-submit our budget. The Office of Economic Development has assured us that they will provide adequate funding for the plan.

Voice of Bear River: CBC Radio will be interviewing Gerry Chute as the “voice of Bear River” to provide a report on what is currently happening here via live early morning radio every month.

Looking to 2007: Suggestions were made as to formation of new subcommittees for 2007: Communications, Board Development, Fundraising were listed. It might be worth researching (again) charitable status, to encourage corporate donations.

4. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION: Moved by Cindy, seconded by Rob to approve and adopt the Minutes of the October 11, 2006 meeting. CARRIED.

5. Next Meeting
December 13, at 7:30 PM at the Youth Centre (Trading Post).

6. Adjournment
Motion made by Cindy for adjournment, CARRIED. Meeting adjourned at 9:00 PM.

Minutes, October 11, 2006

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
October 11, 2006,
Youth Centre (Trading Post Building)

Present: Cindy Harris, John & Susan Malmstrom, Hal Theriault, Don Rice, Nathan Waterman, Grey McKenzie, Rob Buckland.

1. Call to Order/Adoption of Agenda
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM.
MOTION to accept the Agenda. CARRIED.

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business: Introduction of and welcome to Nathan and Grey.

Executive Committee Minutes: were read by Secretary Susan Malmstrom.

Treasurer’s Report: Treasurer Wayne Smith could not be at tonight’s meeting; a report will be submitted at the next Executive Committee meeting.

Youth Centre:
• Report from the Youth Centre Task Force was delivered by Hal. Using a prepared script as a guideline, 18 volunteers surveyed by telephone Bear River and Clementsvale residents to assess community interest in a youth centre. The unofficial report back suggests that there is desire to have a youth centre, but we will have to work to put together a volunteer team to staff it. A formal report will be delivered by the Task Force to the Executive Committee by November 1.
• Funding possibilities have been investigated by Hal, including County and recreation monies. He will continue to pursue all leads. He is currently drafting a proposal to Service Canada to sponsor a managerial position, in the event that the Youth Centre goes forward. MOTION: moved by Cindy to have Hal continue to pursue funding sources for the Youth Centre. Seconded by Rob; CARRIED.
• There will be a special meeting of the telephone survey volunteers at the Youth Centre on October 12. Anyone interested may attend.

New Drop-In Centre: Grey and Nathan presented information on a new venture that they, along with their partners Elizabeth and Rose, are planning to launch in the former crafts building, next to the Cherry Brook Grocery. They will be serving coffee that they have roasted themselves, while offering everything from music to computer skills training. One of their main goals is to offer an alternative venue for young people to congregate, while promoting Bear River and village business. BRIDGS encouraged them to stay in touch so that we do not duplicate efforts, and will assist them whenever possible. They have the same overall goals in mind, such as infrastructure repair and economic development.

Bear River: The River, The Forest, The People: Hal presented a current budget on the theatrical piece that he is working on for BRIDGS. Susan and Hal will work together to gather stories and pictures that are needed for research. Hal will meet with Linda Findlay of the Oakdene board to discuss partnering with them to present the pageant. Cindy suggested that someone contact Peter Guilford regarding architectural plans for the Oakdene. Grey offered to share with Hal a similar plan done in Ontario for another group.

Strategic Development Plan: Hal presented a report on current funding for the Plan. He is in touch with ACOA and the Office of Economic Development to finalize funding.

Voice of Bear River: Hal has been contacted by CBC Radio to provide someone who is willing to give a report on what is currently happening in Bear River via live early morning radio every month. Since there were no volunteers from members present, he will continue his talent hunt.

Medical Centre Update: Hal participated in the interview process for a new administrator for the Bear River Medical Centre. They are pleased to report the hiring of full-time employee Leslie Harris.

4. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION: Moved by Cindy, seconded by Rob to approve and adopt the Minutes of the September 13, 2006 meeting. CARRIED.

5. Next Meeting
November 8, at 7:30 PM at the Youth Centre (Trading Post).

6. Adjournment
Motion made by Cindy for adjournment, CARRIED. Meeting adjourned at 9:00 PM.

Minutes, August 9, 2006

BRIDGS
(Bear River Innovation, Development and Growth Society)
August 9, 2006,
Youth Centre (Trading Post Building)

Present: Cindy Harris, John & Susan Malmstrom, Hal Theriault, Wayne Smith, Tim Wilson, Don Rice, Norma Wagner, Larry Knox, Flora Doehler, Jesse Doehler-Knox, Nikki Sang, Julian & Barbara Graham, Glendean Parker.

1. Call to Order/Adoption of Agenda
Meeting called to order at 7:30 PM.
MOTION to accept the Agenda made by Cindy Harris, seconded by Don Rice. CARRIED.

2. Introduction of Minutes from Previous Meeting

3. New Business

Executive Committee Minutes: were read by Secretary Susan Malmstrom.

Treasurer’s Report: Wayne Smith submitted a Treasurer’s Report. All of the information reflects all expenses that have been paid to date. He has access to the information on-line at any time. He noted that the report reflects that we have assets for the first time. When the bank statement is received, it will be faxed to Wayne so that he has a copy before the general meeting. MOTION to accept the Treasurer’s Report was made by Wayne, seconded by Cindy. CARRIED. MOTION was made to reconcile the Treasurer’s Report with the bank statement by Wayne Smith, seconded by Julian Graham. CARRIED. Don Rice suggested that it is not necessary to read aloud the Treasurer’s Report line by line as this will bog down future meetings.

Youth Centre: Youth Committee Chair Tim Wilson reported on the following:
• The painting party attracted about a dozen participants, including parents.
• The insurance bill cannot be pro-rated, since we are one of 120 other participants in the policy. This means that we have an upcoming insurance bill of $525 due on October 1st, which presents a challenge. It is critical that the Youth Centre is successfully launched in order to maintain credibility with the village and with funders. We will have to find a way to pay for this (plus the rent, which will also be due). Suggestions of a fundraiser or a partnership with the local PTAs were made. If the Youth Centre could offer a program such as homework help, we may be able to partner with the schools.
• A planned budget for the next six months should be drawn up.
• In the next six weeks, volunteer staffing needs to be put into place. A roster of volunteers from amongst parents and BRIDGS members needs to be made. Jane Kingston and Bonnie Macleod will approach the parents of the local teenagers. We need to find out from the insurers if background checks are mandatory for volunteers. (Andre Bouchard would be a good contact for this.)
• Ages 14-16 are the target youth audience.
• September 16th is the tentative grand opening day.
• The upstairs of the Trading Post is also available to the Youth Committee to rent. Glendean Parker said that she could take to BREDS an offer of an additional $50 per month for the space. It is a large space with a restroom.
• Hal suggested an emergency meeting of the Youth Committee to discuss funding possibilities with Andre Bouchard. Hal and Susan offered to attend the meeting. Tim will contact everyone with a date.

Strategic Plan: There has been no news on the Strategic Plan since our last general meeting.

New Business:
• A letter from Adrian Potter was published in the Digby Courier on July 27. The two main points that must be countered are: 1) Funding that BRIDGS receives should be used for a water delivery system for the village; 2) BRIDGS is not being truthful regarding our relationships with other organizations. In address to the first issue, government support is always mandated to specific expenditures and must be allocated accordingly. In address to issue #2, John talked to Daryl Jelfs of the Fire Hall and Mary Golding of the Legion Auxiliary, and both re-iterated their support of BRIDGS. Rather than rebutting the letter in a subsequent issue of the Courier, the Executive Committee decided that it was more prudent to address Mr. Potter’s concerns in a personal letter, which also served as an invitation to attend a BRIDGS meeting. Since there has been no follow-up in the Courier, the issue is currently tabled.
• Town Meeting: To bring the village up-to-date on what the local volunteer organizations have been accomplishing, and hope to accomplish in the coming year, BRIDGS would like to organize a joint community meeting where they would have the opportunity to share their information with everyone else. Invitees will include BREDS, the Board of Trade, the Ladies Auxiliary, the Fire Hall and the Medical Clinic (plus any other group that would like to participate). John volunteered to begin to make contact with the directors of these groups to ascertain if the other groups are amenable to this idea. MOTION was made to launch a community-wide meeting to showcase the volunteer organizations of Bear River by Tim Wilson, seconded by Julian Graham. CARRIED.
• Save the Ferry Rally: The Digby Ferry to St. John is in danger of being closed. Everyone is encouraged to bring a sign and make some noise at an upcoming rally at the Ferry Terminal on Friday, August 11, 11:30 AM.

5. Review and Adoption of Minutes from Previous Meeting
MOTION: Moved by Cindy Harris, seconded by Julian Graham to approve and adopt the Minutes of the July 12, 2006 meeting. CARRIED.

6. Next Meeting
September 13, at 7:30 PM at the Youth Centre (Trading Post).

7. Adjournment
Motion made by Susan Malmstrom for adjournment, CARRIED. Meeting adjourned at 9:30 PM.