Strathcona County approves bold, new social direction

May 23, 2017

Strathcona County approves bold, new social direction

Today, Strathcona County Council approved a Social Framework Policy that intentionally shifts how the community collectively works on social priorities in Strathcona County. The framework’s unique approach reflects the ingenuity of the multiple agencies, organizations, government and citizens who co-created it.

“This approach is the first of its kind to set forth community-wide outcomes for Strathcona County to achieve, as a whole,” says Mayor Roxanne Carr. “This is much more than a municipal policy document. This is a trail-blazing roadmap, authored and actioned by our community, which sets the direction on how we can best align efforts to meet the varying social needs of those who live and work in Strathcona County.”

The Social Framework is based on extensive community consultation of nearly 8,000 people who live and work in Strathcona County, and focuses on four community outcomes of affordability, access to programs and services, safety, and connectedness and inclusion.

The Social Framework was formed under the guidance and input of a steering committee, represented by an unprecedented mix of senior level representatives from business, emergency services, faith community, Government of Alberta, County departments, health, housing, social serving organizations, Strathcona County Library, school boards, local committees and clubs.

The Social Framework has five defining features:

1)   Commitment to four community outcomes (affordability, access to programs and services, safety, and connectedness and inclusion.)

2)   Focus on key shifts in way organizations and citizens address social issues.

3)   Creation of Networks for Participation (serving as an entry point for community members to come together to connect with others to achieve social benefits)

4)   Utilization of backbone support, from one or more organizations, to support the entire process (guiding visioning and strategy, supporting aligned activities, establishing shared measurement, harnessing public will and facilitating supportive policies)

5)   Adoption of strategic learning cycles (identifying key issues for capacity building, planning, implementing and evaluating action plans)

Next steps include working with the steering committee to initiate the development of the Social Framework platform (Networks for Participation, backbone support and strategic learning cycles).

Further information about the Social Framework, including change story examples of the framework in action, is available online or by calling 780-464-4044. This renewed Social Framework replaces the previous Social Sustainability Framework that was created in 2007.

Set in the centre of Alberta’s energy and agricultural heartland, Strathcona County is a thriving, successful and vibrant community of over 98,000 residents. Strathcona County is made up of the urban area of Sherwood Park and a large adjacent rural area of farms, acreages and smaller hamlets. It is home to 75 per cent of refining in Western Canada. With a focus on economic, governance, social, cultural and environmental sustainability, Strathcona County is committed to balancing the unique needs of its diverse community.


- 30 -


Strathcona County Communications, 780-410-6595