Name of Town: French Creek, Errington, Lasqueti, Bowser, Oceanside, Nanoose, Parksville, Qualicum Beach,
Strong ties with multiple non-profit groups with a dedication to policy advocacy
Interview with Sherry Thompson, Bill Nelles, and Christine Muise of the Oceanside CAT.
“The CAT team has provided us a chance to meet and talk to each other,” – Bill Nelles, Executive Director, Mid-Island Peer Society
Members of the Community Action Initiative team sat down with Sherry Thompson, CAT Co-Chair; Bill Nelles, Executive Director, Mid-Island Peer Society; and Rev. Christine Muise, elected Co-Chair to discuss the evolution, learnings, and proud moments experienced while working with the Oceanside CAT. Here’s what they had to say.
Bill Nelles, who is the Executive Director of Mid-Island Peer Society and current member of our CAT, was a very active member of Treatment Pathways Oceanside and we joined the Harm Reduction Committee. This was at the time when CAI’s call for proposals for CATs came out. Bill and I volunteered to write the proposal. Our approach to the proposal was “nothing about us, without us”. We had to include people who use drugs. Bill was especially adamant about that. So, we submitted the proposal and were successful, and here we are.
- The CAT has given peers a forum to speak. At the CAT meetings, the medical health officer and our MLA are in attendance, and this has given a lot of people information about the things that are going on and hopefully galvanizes them into doing something to improve resources in the community. The CAT team has provided us a chance to meet and talk to each other.
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