After a successful run, Fusion Annapolis Valley is shutting down operations on its 5th anniversary
Fusion Annapolis Valley plans to shut down operations as it nears completion of its inaugural 5-year strategic plan focused on creating a network to support Young Professionals.
Annapolis Valley, May 30, 2019: Fusion Annapolis Valley is a volunteer-led and volunteer-run community engagement organization created to address the needs of the Annapolis Valley’s Young Professional community. It was conceived in May 2014 by a collection of Young Professionals to address the lack of resources and supports to aid the under 40 professional community. In September 2014, a founding Board of Directors was struck, and a 5-year strategic plan was created. The main focus of Fusion Annapolis Valley was to create a network to engage and connect young professionals in the Annapolis Valley to further their chances for professional success. The main activities to achieve this goal were to host events to provide networking opportunities for the community, to speak at community groups and post-secondary institutions, and to provide support for the creation of other groups to build the network of supports in the Annapolis Valley. In September 2019, Fusion Annapolis Valley will shut down operations and make way for the network, that it has worked so hard to create, to flourish.
In the 5 years that Fusion Annapolis Valley has existed, they have hosted or co-hosted over 30 events, ranging from Business Expos drawing over 300 attendees, to small intimate coffee shop networking events. They have spoken over a dozen times at NSCC and Acadia University, providing advice and resources to students and faculty, and they have presented at over 20 workshops and info sessions to community groups throughout the Annapolis Valley.
Fusion Annapolis Valley’s largest contribution to the Young Professional community has been their advocacy and support of the creation of the network to support Young Professionals.
- They were instrumental in planning and advocating with the Valley REN to bring a Connector Program to the Annapolis Valley.
- They supported 5 young professional candidates who ran for municipal council, 3 of whom were elected.
- They were a critical partner in the creation of the Kings Youth Council at the Municipality of the County of Kings.
- They supported and partnered with the Annapolis Valley Chamber of Commerce’s Young Business Leaders group during their early stages.
- They supported the efforts of the small business services offered by Nova Scotia Works and the Valley REN to provide additional supports for young entrepreneurs
- They proudly supported the growth of Refresh Annapolis Valley and Acadia Entrepreneurship Centres’ program and events to connect youth to business resources.
“The Valley Regional Enterprise Network (Valley REN) thrives on partnerships with groups like Fusion Annapolis Valley to promote opportunities in entrepreneurship in the region.” says Valley REN CEO, Jennifer Tufts. “Fusion Annapolis Valley has been a key partner for the Connector Program. They have helped to develop and promote the program, hosted events in collaboration and helped recruit both Connectees and Connectors.”
“Fusion Annapolis Valley was a key ally in kick-starting my political career.” says Deputy Mayor of The Municipality of the County of Kings, Emily Lutz. “It was at their event providing information about the municipal election that I felt supported and encouraged to run, and they were a major asset with the creation of our Kings Youth Council.”
“I worked closely with Fusion Annapolis Valley during the Youth Engagement Session (YES) Events that helped raise awareness and interest in the Kings Youth Council.” says Entrepreneur and Councillor with The Municipality of the County of Kings, Meg Hodges. “They were great to work with and were passionate about supporting young professionals, like me.”
“Many of the early members of the Chamber of Commerce’s YBL attended Fusion Annapolis Valley events at one point or another.” says Wes Booth of the AVCC Board of Directors and the Young Business Leaders (YBL) “We partnered with them on the creation of our YBL promotional video and they continue to refer people to us to today.”
The Board of Fusion Annapolis Valley feels they have successfully accomplished the creation of a network to support the Annapolis Valley’s Young Professional Community. In the remaining months until they officially shut down operations in September 2019, Fusion Annapolis Valley will work with partners and groups to promote the existing network, and they are working with the Valley Connector Program to build a visual guide to the network in order to show local Young Professional the great organizations that are committed to their success. They will be booking speaking engagements with municipalities and post-secondary institutions to promote the network, however, they are more than happy to speak to interested groups and organizations who would also like to learn more about the network. ###
W. Coby Milne
Vice President of Fusion Annapolis Valley