Our Work

Priorities & Actions

On the Road to Economic Prosperity, we are focused on priorities and actions that bring unity, demonstrate value and impact, and can be understood and replicated by others. We are pursuing this work with honesty and integrity, grounded in African identity.

During the consultation process, our community identified key economic development themes which have informed the Action Plan's three strategic priorities and 30 actions to be implemented during the first two years.

  1. Build unity and capacity among African Nova Scotians;

  2. Establish land ownership, develop infrastructure, and attract investment; and

  3. Increase participation in education, employment, and entrepreneurship.

Road to Economic Prosperity Plan

Priority 1: Build Unity and Capacity Among African Nova Scotians

This priority is dedicated to building unity and capacity within and among African Nova Scotian communities by sharing best practices, increasing collaboration, and building the leadership and skills needed to advance this work. By building bridges between communities, we can help support one another to take on priorities and projects of unprecedented scale and impact. Here are the 5-year objectives for priority 1:

1. Establish the Road to Economic Prosperity Advisory Committee (REPAC) and Elders Council to provide leadership and oversight

2. Develop an ethical framework guided by shared principles and practices to promote accountability with bi-annual check-in

3. Bring ANS communities together to celebrate and share best practices and lessons learned

4. Report annually on the Road to Economic Prosperity Action Plan, highlighting progress and successes against outcomes

5. Recognize and promote the historical legacy and value of ANS communities

6. Collaborate with public, private, and postsecondary partners to establish an African Nova Scotian Prosperity and Well-being Index modeled after the Halifax Index

7. Bring changemakers to the table who are ready and able to constructively and positively create change

8. Connect ANS communities to training and resources to develop leadership, facilitation, and resiliency skills

9. Develop a mentorship program to engage and support the development of ANS youth

10. Develop a speaker series hosting thought leaders on economic development in African communities globally

11. Ensure ANS communities are aware of, and understand the impacts of, systemwide legislation and municipal by-laws affecting their communities and the mechanisms to provide feedback to government regarding necessary changes.

Priority 2: Establish Land Ownership, Develop Infrastructure, and Attract Investment

The second priority aims to engage and empower African Nova Scotians in improving the current and future state of development, infrastructure, and investment within our communities. Historically, African Nova Scotian communities have been systemically displaced, stripped of their autonomy, blocked from land ownership, and left severely underfunded which has widened the social and economic gap between African Nova Scotians and the rest of the province. This priority addresses these long-standing issues. Objectives under priority 2 are:

12. Identify the best approach to include Community Benefits Agreements (CBA) as part of HRM’s Planning and Development strategies for ANS communities

13. Create a framework to identify and address legislation, policy, and land use by-laws that impact ANS communities, and establish mechanisms for community input on required changes

14. In partnership with the Province, develop an approach to resolve ownership, taxation, and planning issues on residential and community owned properties without clear title

15. Support the Akoma-led master plan for the restoration of the historic Nova Scotia Home for Coloured Children

16. Review the naming, boundaries, and zoning of historic ANS communities, and zoning affecting ANS communities

17. Identify and prioritize the remediation of government-owned contaminated sites in ANS communities.

18. Prioritize and undertake infrastructure projects (capital and renewal) and support development projects across ANS communities

19. Support ANS communities to identify and secure funding for the preservation and interpretation of ANS community heritage sites

20. Prioritize and develop vacant lands within ANS communities

21. Redevelop and market spaces within ANS communities for commercial and/or community use.

22. Pursue sister city and international trade and development relationships with African countries with ancestral ties to African Nova Scotians

23. Attract international investors into the African Nova Scotian communities.

Priority 3: Increase Participation in Education, Employment and Entrepreneurship

The third priority focuses on restoring the relationship between Nova Scotians of African descent and educational and economic institutions. To help restore this bridge, we will work to reconnect African Nova Scotians with opportunities in education, employment, and entrepreneurship.

24. Establish the ANS stream under the Halifax Connector Program.

25. Identify and share existing programs and services supporting the workforce attachment of African Nova Scotians.

26. Connect African Nova Scotians to employment opportunities at HRM.

27. Provide opportunities for ANS-owned businesses into corporate supply chains and government contracts.

28. Explore cooperative models and examine their validity for ANS communities

29. Connect ANS entrepreneurs to business development programs and services

30. Support the growth of ANS Arts and Culture businesses and industries.

Progress Report 2021

The Advisory Council, Elder Council, Youth Council, and working groups have made progress on a number of actions in the plan. We are pleased to share our work from the first year of implementation.

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