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Merrilee Fullerton’s Community Initiatives

REPOSTED FROM MAY 2022 — Merrilee Fullerton has initiated many local programs that helped to bring people together and strengthen existing networks of business, not-for-profit and community groups. In the past four years she used her Community Office to find new ways to promote and profile the good deeds and accomplishments of people, community groups, and business enterprises in Kanata and West Carleton.

Here are four local programs Merrilee Fullerton established and the results to date. 

1. The Kanata-Carleton High Tech and Business Initiative  

Fullerton established objectives to enhance and enrich the prospects of success for Kanata-Carleton’s high tech and business enterprises. The four pillars she set out were 1) Profiling the Kanata-North Footprint, 2) Attracting Venture Capital, 3) Strengthening Business Networks with the Education Community, and 4) Extending Broadband, Internet and Cell Services.  

Fullerton raised the profile of Kanata’s high tech sector and its business community by bringing the Premier and her Cabinet colleagues to see the advances being made in Kanata. She helped profile the launch of the CAV Test Facilities and ensured the province provided just over a million dollars to support the opening of Hub350. She has encouraged the strengthening of business networks with Ottawa’s post-secondary institutions. She is also working to provide greater broadband coverage throughout the western reaches of the City.

Fullerton facilitated the first “Kanata North Day” at Queen’s Park where the Kanata North Business Association met with Ontario Cabinet Ministers on priority issues for the local high tech sector. The Kanata North Day highlighted the community’s technology innovation, investment opportunities, and local traffic issues.

2. Local Business Support: Shop Local Campaign 

Fullerton established close working relations with the business networks of Kanata Central, Carp Road Corridor and Carp BIAs, the Kanata North Business Association, and the Ottawa Board of Trade. She stays in contact with the business groups and holds regular briefings with business leaders in Kanata and West Carleton.

With her online and social media posts she is raising awareness of local business developments. She encourages people to shop at local retailers, contract local services and trades, and make their online purchases from local businesses. Shop Local and Support Our Community.

3. Promoting Community Volunteerism

Fullerton has been proactive in providing support to local volunteer groups and community associations — promoting greater engagement and an awareness of volunteerism in our community. She consistently uses social media, traditional and community news, as well as presentations to help profile the programs and achievements of volunteer efforts.

In the last two years Fullerton has hosted four volunteer roundtable discussions. Approximately three dozen organizations have participated and the session reports are sent out to more than 50 local volunteer organizations. By sharing the news and insights of our volunteers, the network of local groups is being strengthened, which in turn is provides greater services within our community.

From announcing a new facility for the Dave Smith Youth Treatment Centre in Carp to providing financial support for the Kanata Seniors’ Centre, or assisting with operations at the Diefenbunker Museum, Fullerton is championing local volunteer and community organizations.

4. Healthy Living Program:  Let’s Get Active

In early 2020 Fullerton introduced to Kanata and West Carleton residents a healthy living awareness campaign called “Let’s Get Active.” It is a local community initiative to encourage people to become more physically active by providing health facts on exercise and recreational sports as well as highlighting local recreational facilities and parkland where people can enjoy outdoor activities.

The initial awareness encourages youth to become physically active, which benefits both their physical and mental health. In Fall 2021, Fullerton introduced information materials to encourage seniors to establish daily exercise regimes, particularly beginning a walking routine.

Merrilee Fullerton is committed to facilitating these local programs. She views them as important services that support the residents of Kanata and West Carleton.

The Kanata-Carleton High Tech and Business Initiative

Local Business Support: Shop Local Campaign

Promoting Community Volunteerism

Healthy Living Program:  Let’s Get Active