Community Futures Wild Rose (CFWR) is working to combat labour problems within Wheatland County by launching a study of the current state of the market.

A release, distributed May 12, described on April 28, local economic development practitioners from communities across the local region gathered to plan a labour market study and build a support strategy. 

“As the Board Chair of Community Futures Wild Rose and Reeve of Wheatland County, I am thrilled that our ground-breaking Workforce Strategy Project Plan is launching. Our organization is committed to empowering individuals, businesses, and communities to reach their fullest potential,” said Amber Link. “With this comprehensive study, we aim to build a dynamic workforce strategy that fosters innovation, adaptability, and strategic growth. Through partnerships and targeted initiatives, we will identify the skills gap, unleash untapped potential, and ignite economic prosperity throughout our region.”

The collaboration, she added, aims to result in data which will inform an evidence-based strategy to support both new and existing businesses within the County.

Based on information made available via the CFWR release, the team suggests the Wild Rose Region is poised to see a tremendous influx in economic development, though there are lingering concerns regarding potential labour force challenges and staffing both new and existing businesses. 

CFWR is a Strathmore-based, non-profit organization that is dedicated to building an economically diverse future for the communities in the region. The board of directors consists of elected municipal leaders from local communities. 

“Bringing community leaders together to tackle these challenges is the first step to building a sustainable and vibrant future for our businesses and residents,” said Wendy Gerbrandy, community economic development officer for CFWR.

It was indicated in the release, the CFWR project is being made possible through federal funding support, as well as contributions from the Town of Strathmore, Wheatland County, Kneehill County, Rocky View County, and Prospect Human Services. 

“Our team of experienced staff understand the challenges of owning a business, and are here to provide the resources, support and tools to help businesses succeed,” said Chantale Sangster, CFWR executive director. “This is an exciting opportunity to shape the future of our communities, by being proactive, not reactive.”

The first major milestone of the project will be to rally volunteers from across the region to conduct business visits to gather information. 

Chambers of Commerce, elected officials, other non-profit organizations, and employment agencies are being encouraged to participate in a one-day “blitz” to kick off the business survey later in the year, which is intended to inform the workforce strategy. A date for the “visitation blitz” was not indicated.

By John Watson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jun 01, 2023

This item reprinted with permission from   Strathmore Times   Strathmore, Alberta

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