On the recommendation of the Town Council, a study of community life was undertaken to assess the community’s opinion on sports, leisure and community life services.
A working group was established to carry out and evaluate the study with the help of Mr. Jean-Luc Bélanger of Consultation Magik. A forum of community organizations was asked to analyze the study’s findings and present its recommendations to the workinggroup and the Town Council. Among those recommendations was the hiring of an individual by the Town who would:
- Oversee the creation of an Association of Community Organizations (ACO);
- Facilitate the sharing of available resources in the region;
- Provide guidance to community organizations;
- Encourage the diversification of services into sectors other than sports and leisure.
Mrs. Claire Bossé was thus hired by the Town in June 2001. In November 2001, the mayor, Mr. David Moreau, proclaimed November to be “Volunteer Month in Saint-Quentin”. A forum was organized in November and a dialogue was initiated in order to develop a mission, vision, goals and objectives. A committee was established to represent the Association of Community Organizations and the work to improve community life began.
The Association of Community Organizations is now active, offering both guidance to community organizations and training workshops to volunteers. Volunteers are recognized for their hard work in November of each year. November is now known as Volunteer Month, during which the Volunteer of the Year, the Athlete of the Year and the Community Organization of the Year are given special recognition.
Mission Statement of the Association of Community Organizations of the Saint-Quentin Region
To bring together the organizations in the Saint Quentin region and equip them with the tools they need to nurture a rich community life that is responsive to the needs of the population. In order to stimulate and strengthen these organizations, the Association will encourage and depend on their mutual assistance, communication and cooperation.
Vision Statement of the Association of Community Organizations of the Saint-Quentin Region
All organizations in the region of Saint Quentin will work together in solidarity and harmony to increase the community’s sense of pride and belonging, thereby contributing to the well-being of the population
Goals and Objectives
Goal 1 : Bring together as many organizations as possible in the Association of Community Organizations (ACO)
1.1 Develop effective means of communication with the organizations
1.2 Promote the ACO among organizations in the Saint-Quentin region
1.3 Encourage organizations in the Saint-Quentin region to work together
1.4 Clarify the roles and responsibilities of the ACO
1.5 Collectively plan regional initiatives
1.6 Identify common issues and concerns
1.7 Pursue these common issues andconcerns
1.8 Analyze the quality of community life in the Saint-Quentin region on an ongoing basis
1.9 Collectively and continuously respond to the evolving needs of the population
Goal 2 : Effectively promote the ACO
2.1 Create an information bulletin for the region’s organizations and the general public
2.2 Establish a shared bulletin board
2.3 Develop a brochure to explain the ACO’s purpose
2.4 Develop a directory of regional organizations
2.5 Publish a calendar of events and avoid duplication
2.6 Familiarize the region with the ACO
Goal 3 : Reinforce the capacity of community organizations
3.1 Inform, equip and train organizations in the Saint-Quentin region
3.2 Offer two training workshops per year, in spring and autumn respectively
3.3 Assist organizations in defining themselves and making themselves known
3.4 Create a ‘welcome centre’ for volunteers (a single point of contact for those seeking volunteer opportunities)
3.5 Support the organizations in the Saint-Quentin region
3.6 Recognize the accomplishments of groups and individuals of the Saint-Quentin region
3.7 Stimulate interest and encourage participation in the ACO
3.8 Change the prevailing mentality and foster solidarity among regional organizations
Info-ACO : (French version only)