Image of the river valley in Red Deer.
Nov 19

Membership Spotlight | Central Alberta Economic Partnership

Check out our Membership Spotlight on Central Alberta Economic Partnership!

Membership Spotlight | Central Alberta Economic Partnership

Central Alberta Economic Partnership represents more than 45 municipalities and organizations. CAEP's collaborative approach accelerates a sustainable and innovative economy in Central Alberta. We interviewed Kimberley Worthington, CAEP Executive Director below:

1. Tell us about your organization?  

CAEP is a partnership of communities and institutions such as post-secondary and chambers of commerce that coordinates regional economic development activities, and supports municipalities in collaborating and growing the economic potential in their communities. We organize research, educate members, provide networking opportunities and leverage grants to serve the region.  Founded in 1998, CAEP is a member funded non-profit society that was the first, and remains one of the strongest, regional economic development organization in the province.  

2. What makes you different, unique, or stand out?

Because we act regionally, CAEP can undertake some broad projects. For example, we have been working on strengthening connections along a transportation corridor into BC that will benefit tourism, logistics and hospitality sectors.  We also bring together municipalities and organizations to explore opportunities for sustainable economic development and we advocate from a regional perspective amplifying the voice of local government to higher levels of government.

3. Why do you do what you do?

While CAEP doesn’t focus on attracting tourists, we know that visiting is often the first step to someone moving here to live or invest in a business. We recently completed research into what tourism operators need to be more successful and have learned that while some are well established, some are just starting out.  We share that information with economic development officers who can tailor solutions, such as education, to support their local operators. Another thing is the need for labour which is being felt across all sectors.  CAEP is organizing a labour summit in March 2023 that will help all kinds of businesses develop their workforce strategies to attract labour whether it is temporary, full-time, part-time or seasonal.

4. What can guests (local or visiting) expect to experience?

We are currently working on a regional brand that, beginning in 2023, will help to identify the region geographically and entice people to stay and invest in central Alberta. Our tourism study showed that there is room to grow awareness of the tourism market and by working collaboratively, CAEP can help local communities, through regional grants for example, to promote and develop the attractions we already have and support new ones.

5. What is new or upcoming?

Anyone can attend our upcoming general meeting in Red Deer on November 23. Tickets are online through Eventbrite. We also are actively promoting intermodal transportation and networking to make sure central Alberta isn’t forgotten as discussions ramp up around a high-speed train. We also are connecting with Indigenous communities to learn and discuss how to work together on projects of mutual interest and benefit. CAEP’s Workforce Summit will be held at Westerner Park March 23, and we already have a lot of great speakers and sponsors lined up.

Click here to visit CAEP’s website and to learn more.

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