During the first weekend in June, Cape Breton’s youth are being brought together to address ways to make Cape Breton a more attractive place to live and work in order to attract and retain young professionals, entrepreneurs and students to the region.
The Cape Breton Partnership is collaborating with the Cape Breton University Students’ Union, JCI Cape Breton, Nova Scotia Community College: Cape Breton Campus’ Student Associations and the Unama’ki Economic Benefits Office to hold a groundbreaking conference entitled Next Gen 2010.
Sixteen to forty year olds from all over Cape Breton are invited to the Membertou Trade and Convention Centre on Thursday, June 3 to have their say.
“Next Gen 2010 is the first step in developing a retention and attraction strategy to position Cape Breton as a location of choice,” said Keith MacDonald, Executive Director of the Cape Breton Partnership. “The up and coming generation is a valuable resource in this region and we want to work to keep them here by engaging them in the retention process and listening to what they have to say.”
“Cape Breton, like many regions in Canada, is experiencing youth out migration, which leads to a number of issues over the long term. It affects the available workforce within the region, the amount of new business start ups, it affects the education system, as well as business in general.”
As a lead in to the conference, the Cape Breton Partnership is calling on Cape Breton – Mulgrave residents between the ages of 16 and 40 to come forward and share their own stories of why they chose to stay in Cape Breton to live, work and play.
“There are a number of Next Generation individuals who chose to stay in the region and call this their home, their region of choice,” said MacDonald. “Those stories are all unique and inspiring in their own ways. Next Gen 2010 would like to provide a forum for those stories to be told and heard”.
“We’re hoping to have dialogues with individuals from Cape Breton, from those who have stayed as well as those who have moved, about why they’ve decided to stay or move here. From there we hope to create a list of the region’s strengths that attract people as well as issues or barriers that we can begin to address in a more focused effort to retain and attract as many people as possible,” says MacDonald. “We’ve certainly seen a number of people move to this region to continue or start their career; going to have a panel of people who have done this, and talk about how the move has been a positive decision for them.”
The one day conference will deal specifically with Cape Breton’s population trend by focusing on panel discussions and break out sessions in which participants are encouraged to vocalize fresh, innovative and cutting edge ideas about what can be done to boost and strengthen Cape Breton’s future. “This is an important step in building a foundation for prosperity in the years to come,” added MacDonald
For more information and to register please visit capebretonpartnership.com
If you wish to share your story email email@example.com with the subject line “My Story” for a chance to be posted on the “Your Story” section of the Cape Breton Partnership’s website.
Planning on attending Next Gen 2010? Let us know what you think of what Cape Breton has to offer young people in our comments.