Jeff Green | Sep 27, 2007
Feature Article - September 27, 2007 Feature Article - September 27, 2007
Frontenac CFDC Annual General Meetingby Jule Koch Brison
It wasn’t all work at the Frontenac Community Futures Development Corporation (FCFDC) Annual Meeting on Sept. 25; there was play also as two Grade 8 Prince Charles Public School students gave a demonstration of Lego Robotics.
With funding from the FCFDC, six Lego Robotics kits, equipped with the latest technology, were purchased for Prince Charles. The kits have enabled the Verona students to excel at robotics competitions.
Tyler Rose and Jason Caird are a 2-person team; Jason builds the robots and Tyler programs them. Tyler explained to the audience how the programming is done, and then they put their robot “Kit Kat” through its paces on a course they had set up.
The kits come with a manual, but Jason grinned as he said, “The book’s right here in my head.”
Kevin Phillips of Fernleigh Lodge, a FCFDC client, was scheduled to be a guest speaker, but had to cancel.
Business Development officer Lance Gibson gave a summary of the corporation’s activities. This year, $715,414 was lent out to local businesses. The funds invested contributed to the creation of 50 full and 5 part time jobs within the community, as well as the maintenance of 35 full and 5 part time jobs and 21 contract positions.
Since opening in the spring of 2004, the Frontenac CFDC has invested a total of $1,970,793 through 56 loans to local businesses. They have also hosted a number of seminars and events to assist businesses.
A favourite initiative has been the business plan competition for local high school students. The first year there were 15 submissions; this year there were 40, and for the first time, a student went on to establish a business. Michelle Nowell, the winner at North Addington Education Centre, opened “Keep Fit Fitness”, in Cloyne a few months ago.
Executive Director Anne Prichard said that 22 business have taken advantage of the Skills Development initiative. FCFDC also worked with Ontario Works to put together a training program, which enabled 5 people to get off social assistance and find full-time jobs.
Kevin Bovey of the Frontenac 4H Steer Club also spoke at the meeting. CFDC funding enabled to club to start up, and it now has 18 members. Lyn Cronk of Eastern Cowboy Adventures in Parham taught the kids how to rope, and they recently took that skill to the Kingston Fair, drawing crowds of young people.
At the close of the meeting, retiring Director Margaret Pritchard was recognized and presented with an award and a certificate. She said she would encourage anyone to become a Frontenac CFDC member. Margaret and her husband operate Hartington Equipment.