See beyond the sponsorship

It is a shame that more local women did not turn up to the Women Building Communities event last week.

It is a shame that more local women did not turn up to the Women Building Communities event last week.

It was a fantastic opportunity for women to network, make new friends and hear about other life experiences, coping with motherhood, gaining success in their careers and their thoughts for the future.

I thought local business woman Kelly Holliday was a terrific panelist and very inspiring, it’s just too bad that more local women didn’t take the offer to be panelists. If you put aside the fact that Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipelines was the sponsor of the event, it was truly a worthwhile event that I think most, if not all local women would have enjoyed and benefited from in one way or another.

However just four local women attended. Holliday had a lot of valuable and inspiring thoughts, so it would have been nice if this could have been shared with more people.

Even if Enbridge is the sponsor, and locals don’t support the proposed pipeline project, attending a sponsored event doesn’t sign you on to support the pipeline.

The event was about local women, sharing experiences with each other.

A great lunch was also provided and I thought it was a really enjoyable event.

I also think that the event could have been better advertised. How did people know the event was happening? You can’t rely on word of mouth, so I think the turn out would have been much better if the event had been advertised.

Enbridge did have propaganda sprinkled around the room, and while the event was not about Enbridge, it had the appearance of being an Enbridge event on the surface.

Perhaps next time, if Enbridge sponsor a similar event here in Burns Lake the propaganda should be left at their office and more of a focus could be paid to the event, rather than the pipeline project they are trying to have approved.

Of course, with Enbridge being a part of the event locals probably had their suspicions about if the event was legitimate and focused solely on women, or if it was an event that would ‘promote’ the company to a target audience.

If Enbridge was trying to endear themselves in the community, they are probably going about it the wrong way again. If however the event is legitimate, then the company should take a back seat and let the women in each community the event is held, lead the way. They also probably shouldn’t have an Enbridge panelist speaking at the event, or if they do, the discussion shouldn’t centre around the company as much as it did.

Thank goodness that Kelly Holliday saw beyond Enbridge as the sponsor and saw what the event could and should be.

Two thumbs up for Kelly for making the event positive, inspiring and a welcome opportunity for local women to gather together and provide support and advice for each other.