Local Journalism Initiative
MRC PONTIAC – The Connexions Resource Centre recently hired Shelley Heaphy as its new Community Outreach and Engagement Coordinator. With a rich history in community involvement and a passion for connecting residents to essential resources, Heaphy is excited and optimistic about the difference she can make.
Heaphy played an instrumental role in the establishment and growth of the parent-focused organization, ‘Parent’s Voice’, initiated about a decade ago in the Shawville area. Parent’s Voice has organized numerous events and activities for families, such as mom and tot dance classes, yoga, playgroups, and even a Lego club.
- Heaphy’s journey began as a schoolteacher. After relocating to the city for school, she returned to the Pontiac 11 years ago. This homecoming was accompanied by a determination to be deeply rooted in the community. “You can’t live in a small town and not be involved,” she said.
- The decision to join Connexions was fueled by her desire for a position that aligned more closely with her community development aspirations. Heaphy described her role as multifaceted – from understanding the specific needs of the community and organization, to representing them on government platforms. Her primary focus will be to develop a clear picture of the community’s current resources and areas of need to create more robust and sustainable support networks for residents.
- Connexions plays a vital role in the community by helping English-speaking residents navigate various resources. Their website offers guidance on topics like how to register with a doctor among other community-related services. The Centre also organizes activities and services for youth, families and seniors.