Survey results highlight importance of diverse public engagement opportunitiesNews Article
The results of the Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen (RDOS) communications and public engagement survey were presented during the December 16, 2021 Corporate Services Committee meeting. The five-question survey focused on determining how residents and property owners prefer to engage with the RDOS. A total of 373 online survey responses were completed along with nine paper copies.
The communications and public engagement survey was conducted between June 7 and August 31, 2021. Paper copies of the survey were made available through municipal member offices, local volunteer fire halls, and community centres. The majority of respondents selected email newsletters as their preferred method of receiving information about RDOS services, projects, and initiatives. The RDOS website, social media and mass notification system were among the other preferred delivery methods.
“The survey results highlight the importance of providing diverse public engagement opportunities,” says RDOS Chair Mark Pendergraft. “This includes in-person and electronic public meetings, which is especially important in the early stages of projects.”
In response to the survey, the RDOS continues to develop the Community Champions program as part of ongoing efforts to improve information sharing in rural areas. In October 2021, a new regional newsletter was launched via the RDOS Regional Connections interactive website. Paper copies were also made available. In December 2021, the RDOS transitioned from CivicReady to the Canadian-based Voyent Alert! notification system. Voyent Alert! offers a user-friendly smartphone app and supports sending routine and emergency notifications via text message, email or landline telephone message.
Other initiatives include the development of a short informational video to answer questions about regional district services (to be published early in 2022.) RDOS web content is also being reviewed in advance of an overall assessment of the RDOS website. Further survey analysis will take place with department managers and staff.
Mark Pendergraft, Chair
Regional District of Okanagan-Similkameen
Manager, Legislative Services
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Did you know? Regional Districts provide a broad range of services, with the exception of roads, policing, and those for which the Province of BC has not delegated authority.