The Town of Blackfalds has announced that they will be conducting a social needs assessment and master plan for the community. The Town will be working closely with the Blackfalds FCSS staff to survey the public and facilitate focus group to determine the town’s social needs.
“Typically every five years, we have brought in a consulting firm that supported by administration that the municipality will ask a series of questions through surveys, focus groups, stake holder interviews, those sorts of things to try and understand what the social needs are in the community? How can we support our community social wellbeing? What will we see over the next couple of months is those activities. We'll see a survey that will be publicly distributed, probably through social media, possibly available in hardcopy at facilities,” explained Executive Director of the Blackfalds FCSS, Sue Bornn.
Born is looking forward to the timing of the assessment which will mean they will be engaging with youth in the community who will be going into Blackfalds new High School and especially after the pandemic.
“We've seen lots of disconnection through the pandemic, and so we're hoping that we'll be able to use this social masterplan as a way to make plans to be effective and efficient with our financials and use our money appropriately and make a good impact to support the social wellbeing in the community,” said Bornn.
Bornn added that one of the goals of the assessments will be to be fiscally responsible.
“In the name of fiscal responsibility a lot of people lost their jobs. What services are our governments able to provide? How can we continue to provide these things if we aren't raising taxes? How do we pay for these things? What are the opportunities, right? It is really timely and I think it will be really supportive for us as a community and as a region to hopefully be really intentional with the results and make a big impact,” explained Bornn.
On April 26th Blackfalds Town Council selected Moorhouse and Associates and Objective Reasearch and Evaluation to undertake the assessment. Community engagement opportunities will be taking place in June, July, and August for approval in October.