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Non-profit agencies planning reverse municipal candidate forum

In a reversal from most election forums, the Grande Prairie Public Library and Northreach Society have invited all city council and mayoral candidates to learn a little more about the organizations they could potentially end up working alongside.

Library Director Deb Cryderman says while traditionally candidates would answer questions about how they would look to change the municipality, in this case, they will be the ones able to raise their hands. She adds the library is all about making information available to the public.

“Why not start them off on the ground running with information on these agencies that help support the community,” she says. “We’re all here to work for the community; they’re potentially going to come work for the community [so] let’s get them started with information right away.”

Cryderman says with so many not-for-profits still tweaking the way they operate coming out of the COVID-19 pandemic, they continue to work with other service providers to offer support in trying times. She believes the forum is a perfect opportunity to help potential councillors and residents better understand the inner workings of nearly a dozen service providers.

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“This is one way to see us all together and understand how all of those pieces of the puzzle of making people’s lives better working together,” she says. “This isn’t just for council candidates, so if you’re wondering if how many of these organizations work, or have questions, or would like to reinforce that information to council candidates.”

In addition to the library and Northreach Society, other confirmed attendees will be representatives from Wapiti House, Odyssey House, the Grande Prairie Pride Society, GALAP, the Centre for Newcomers, Centre for Young Parents, Canadian Mental Health Association, Centerpoint Facilitation, Grande Spirit Foundation, Art Gallery of Grande Prairie and the Saint Lawrence Centre.

The event will happen at the Grande Prairie Public Library on Wednesday, August 25th from 8 to 10 p.m.

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