Feedback sought on children’s needs

NANAIMO – Early Years Partnership revamps action plan with launch of community consultations.

Residents are being asked to weigh in on the needs of children as the Greater Nanaimo Early Years Partnership revamps its action plan.

The Greater Nanaimo Early Years Partnership, a roundtable of local organizations, has launched a community consultation process to help figure out new top priorities and a strategic direction.

The partnership has been running for more than a decade with initiatives like Nanaimo Family magazine and an ‘Unplug’ billboard campaign to encourage families to spend more time connecting with each other.

Now it’s looking to expand its group and update its direction “with the voices of the community” to guide them, according to Amber Bruner, chairwoman of the Nanaimo Early Years Leadership Team and children first early years community coordinator.

So far, 600 surveys have been collected from parents on what they believe children in Nanaimo need to thrive. There will also be an invite-only consultation Wednesday (March. 12).

“It’s exciting,” Bruner said. “We are hearing from so many different, diverse sources in Nanaimo so we are really getting a clear and broad picture of what  children and families need.”

The early years partnership is made up of representatives from organizations like the Boys and Girls Clubs of Central Vancouver Island, Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre, the United Way and the Nanaimo school district.

The group is looking to have new plans in place for goals and projects within the next three months.

Those interested in joining the partnership or giving input into the consultation project can contact Bruner at