Students at Vancouver Island University learned some valuable skills from Arrowsmith Community mentors last week, to introduce students to community development and shed some light on a small rural community.
The course, called Community Development in Recreation and Tourism, is part of the Bachelor of Tourism Management program at VIU. Arrowsmith Recreation team Marilynn Sims, Kim Longmuir and Reg Nosworthy met with the students to explain rural recreation delivery and grant writing and also give them a tour through the community while introducing them to local volunteers and workers.
“The hope is that through interaction with community mentors that students will not only learn some skills regarding resource mobilization (i.e., grant writing) but that they will also have a better understanding of the communities that are part of the VIU’s primary catchment area,” said a professor of the program, Aggie Weighill, in an email.
At the end of the course the students will have a better understanding of community development as a process of planning within communities, Weighill said. They will learn how to organize and mobilize local citizens, how to engage local citizens in information gathering and how to identify and mobilize resources to help achieve community needs.