Community: (noun) a group of people living in the same area and/or with shared interests.
Oceanside is a community of communities. We have our municipalities and surrounding regional areas, each with their distinct identity.
We also are fortunate to have many residents participate in numerous organizations with particular interests and with the common goal of improving some aspect of our community.
There are many linkages between organizations as, is often the case, a person will volunteer for multiple organizations.
We need each other.
Qualicum Beach needs to have Parksville nearby just as both municipalities need to have each other and the surrounding more rural areas.
We interact every day. We work, shop, learn, worship and recreate around our region.
We participate in organizations of common interest that transcend geographical boundaries.
The Qualicum Beach Chamber of Commerce is but one of many organizations each doing things that make life better for all who live here.
Chamber members proudly or quietly contribute time, money and effort to other organizations and community events that enhance the quality of our lives and to similarly help others.
Qualicum Beach chamber members support scholarships awarded to students graduating from KSS.
The chamber also partners with the Rotary to stage the annual gala each November, an event that raises funds which are disbursed via grants to many community organizations.
While serving as a director on the board of the Qualicum Beach Chamber of Commerce, I have learned of the many other things that the chamber does to serve its members and our community.
Of all the things the chamber does, I consider its advocacy for the economic sustainability of our community to be most important to our members and by extension our community.
Doing things that enhance the economic sustainability of our community is the core of the chamber’s strategic plan.
We are so fortunate to have so many communities of interest supporting the environmental and social sustainability of our community.
These are two of the three legs that support the quality of life tripod.
Economic sustainability is the third, and the one the chamber is working to strengthen.
We would like to bolster it to the same degree as our social and environmental support systems. The chamber is working hard and with others to improve our local and regional economy. Our goal is to attract job creating investment that supports and enhances our social and environmental assets that we are so proud of.
If you do business, any business in this area and are not a chamber member, I encourage you to join and participate in the Chamber’s activities. The investment is small, the reward — huge.
Rusty Joerin is a director of the Qualicum Beach Chamber of Commerce. He provides independent supply management services and is a photographer.