Originally, the SCN had hoped to become a broad-based network (not an action group or organization) of individual and groups across Nova Scotia, but limited capacity prevented us from achieving that goal. (The all-too-common story with volunteers groups.) The idea was to become an effective communications 'container' and information clearinghouse. We have done that to a certain extent, developing an on-line databank with articles, success stories and net links in a number of categories, a 'town hall' and a database of organizations in Nova Scotia. Our home, available to anyone through the world-wide web, is on the Chebucto Community Net. It receives thousands of 'visits' each month, and we believe fills a need.
Recently, the Clean Nova Scotia Foundation was awarded funds from Health Canada and Environment Canada for the Community Animation Programme (CAP). CAP will be facilitating a process where a number of Networks -- including SCN -- combine forces to create a 'meta-network' with a databank, organization database, threaded discussion groups, calendar of events, and much more, for all of Atlantic Canada. CAP will provide funding and staff support, and we hope this will become an effective network with broad ownership; essentially, much of what we wanted to do. Therefore, over time, the SCN's organizations database and town hall will be replaced by this new, more thorough network. There is, however, still a need to provide good 'green economics' and sustainable communities info, on both local and global issues.
That's why the Nova Scotia Environment & Development Coalition will take over our Internet world-wide web site. The new site will just focus on environment & development info, mostly stuff that the Coalition produces or has easy access to. You'll notice the web site now says "Sustainable Communities Information -- a project of the N.S. Environment & Development Coalition".
So, we aren't really a network anymore -- we hope you aren't too disappointed, but we over-extended our grasp a bit. (For those of you who have recently sent in membership renewal fees, they will be returned.) However, we are very proud of the work that was done -- the Town Hall and Profiles Database are both extensive and well-used, and will form the backbone of the new CAP network. And the E&D Coalition continues to conduct research, education and action on sustainability, and the SCN web site is an excellent vehicle to disseminate those views.
We sincerely thank you for all your support. If you wish (and we'd be happy if you do!), we can put you on the E&D Coalition mailing list so you can stay in touch, and perhaps get actively involved in that group.
On behalf of the SCN/E&D Coalition, thanks again for your help, and we (the SCN steering committee) wish you all the best in your endeavours for sustainability.
Carlos Freitas, Chrystal Fuller, Susan Lilley, Sean Kelly