Posted: March 2, 2022

The African Nova Scotian (ANS) Road to Economic Prosperity Advisory Committee is pleased to announce the launch of its Elder Council to support the implementation of the African Nova Scotian Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan (REPAP), a five-year economic development plan created and owned by community.

The Elder Council is comprised of representatives of African descent from across the province from Digby to Cape Breton, including representatives from historic communities as well as new immigrants. Members are leaders in the community and have a history of working to improve the lives of African Nova Scotians. Nine of 15 members have been named including: Cameron Brown, Melinda Daye, Darlene Lawrence, Charles Sheppard, Olive Phillips, Lavonne Sparks, Iona Duncan-States, Craig Smith, and Shawna Paris-Hoyte. During the ceremony Mrs. Eliza Brooks, a centenarian, was also recognized as an honorary member of the council.

“During our orientation we were reminded that we have over 500 years of experience on the council. That’s over 500 years of activism, advocacy, and community engagement. We are so grateful to bring that wealth of experience to this work and look forward to the contributions of those elders,” says Dolly Williams, co-chair of the Road to Economic Prosperity Advisory Committee.

Council members will bring valuable experience and skills to implementing the Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan and act as advocates and guardians of the work in community. The Elder Council mandate includes:

  1. Providing counsel and guidance to the Road to Economic Prosperity Advisory Committee (REPAC) on matters of interest to the Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan (REPAP).

  2. Helping to build and maintain an ethical governance system of community leadership.

  3. Providing strategic direction and guidance on the work of REPAP.

  4. Supporting and providing spiritual guidance as the work of REPAP proceeds.

  5. Acting as storehouse for community knowledge and information.

Elders are holders of culture, values, and history that get passed down from generation to generation. The council was launched to ensure that those elements are infused throughout the Road to Economic Prosperity work and that ancestral knowledge is leveraged to drive outcomes that reinforce a connection to culture and community.

Media Contact:

Jenee Jarvis
Project Coordinator, African Nova Scotian Initiatives
Halifax Partnership

About the African Nova Scotia Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan:

The African Nova Scotian Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan is a five-year collaborative strategy developed and owned by the African Nova Scotian (ANS) community to advance economic development and community priorities. Launched in January 2021, the plan was built through two years of engagement and consultation with ANS communities throughout Halifax Regional Municipality to identify key issues, priorities, and actions to address systemic barriers and improve economic and quality of life outcomes for African Nova Scotians. The plan is delivered in partnership with the Halifax Regional Municipality and Halifax Partnership and with support from RBC and the Province of Nova Scotia. Visit www.anseconomicprosperity.com for more information.

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