Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hecate Strait Business Society gets a few rooms with a view

The Hecate Strait Business Development Society has relocated its offices out of the downtown area and over to the Mariner’s Park side of town, taking over a portion of the Ministry of Forestry building overlooking the Cruise Ship and Atlin Terminals.

The Society which provides pockets of training and advice for job seekers and small business developers recently celebrated its grand opening, which the Daily News reported on in Thursday’s paper.

New digs give job-seekers a boost
Hecate Strait Employment centre able to expand support from new space
By Kris Schumacher
The Daily News
Thursday, September 18, 2008

Pages one and three

It was an exciting afternoon for everyone involved with the Hecate Strait Employment Development Society on Tuesday, as the organization welcomed the public into its new location.
The society opened the doors at 1 p.m. to showcase their new office space located on the main floor of the forestry building at 208 First Avenue East.

Attendees were treated to cake and refreshments, as well as a tour of the new facility from staff members.

Don Reynierse, chair of the Hecate Strait Development Society Board, said the society has been actively engaged in the search for a new space for at least three years.
While adjustments were made in their old headquarters on Second Avenue West in order to accommodate the growth in services they were providing, expansion of the offices was a long time in coming.

"It's been a real pleasure to see the development that's happened over the years," said Reynierse.

"At first, all we did was Self-Employment Benefits for people trying to start up their own businesses. It mushroomed from there to now partnering with many other entities in town, including St. John's Ambulance and a multitude of partners. I think that's been part of the key to our success."

Prince Rupert Mayor Herb Pond, North Coast MLA Gary Coons and Prince Rupert Port Authority Public Affairs Manager Maynard Angus were all on hand for the celebration, each remarking on the important role the society has played in the lives of many residents of Prince Rupert and the North Coast region.

Many residents who have utilized the society recently and in years past were also on hand to tour the new centre, which includes a large classroom space in addition to individual offices for the society employees.

“We really had a problem in classroom training at our old site. With limited space, it was cramped and we often had to go outside the building to do that,” said Reynierse. “Now we can offer classes in-house and that has really opened up what we can do, and enables us to further expand the services and programs we offer.

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