Developing an Innovative Community of Practice – CCP Mentorship Initiative Successes

Presenting organization: Alderhill Planning Inc.

Session length: 1.5 hours


A Community of Practice (CoP) is a group of people who share a craft or position. The concept of community of practice has found a number of practical applications in business, organizational design, government, education, professional associations and development programs.

People have adopted the concept most readily in business because of the recognition that knowledge is a critical asset that needs to be managed strategically. Initial efforts at managing knowledge have focused on information systems with disappointing results. Communities of practice provide a new approach, which focuses on people and on the social structures that enable them to learn with and from each other.

INAC BC Region has supported the Comprehensive Community Planning Mentorship Initiative for six years with positive results. When the Mentorship Initiative first began there were approximately 15 communities in BC with completed CCP’s. As of October 2016, 70 communities have completed their CCP’s, which has opened up opportunity for communities to move forward in their Land Use and Economic Development Planning work.

What Participants will learn by attending

⦁ CCP Mentorship Initiative Background and how the Initiative started
⦁ How to create a Community of Practice for your sector and build capacity within First Nations communities and support First Nation to First Nation learning
⦁ Networking with other Economic Development and Lands Managers in the province
⦁ Identify strengths and gaps in each sector and participate in a facilitated discussion on creating First Nation to First Nation learning opportunities in Economic Development and Lands.

Elaine Alec
Alderhill Planning Inc.
c: 250-462-6349

Presenter Biography

Elaine Mackensie Alec is the daughter of Sophie Alec and the late Saul “Kenzie” Basil. Both of her parents are direct descendants of hereditary chiefs and were both heavily involved in the Red Power Movement, also known as the American Indian Movement (A.I.M.) Both of her parents attended Residential School.

Elaine was raised on the Penticton Indian Band reserve during the late 70’s and early 80’s when alcoholism and drug abuse was rampant and highly accepted within community. It also wasn’t until she was older that she recognized she was raised in poverty. She credits the life with her grandmother’s teachings that enriched her and her younger sisters lives. Most of their necessities were met by her grandmother and she spent most of her early childhood listening to the language and songs, following instruction and being mentored by elders, political and spiritual leaders.

Like most families on reserve and in poverty, her family experienced many hardships, illness and loss. It is this background that has driven Elaine to become deeply committed to enhancing the health and wellness in not only her community but also all communities. Her life purpose is, “To gather and share the knowledge of our ancestors to promote healing for the mind, body and spirit”

She believes in building strong relationships and understands how our sensitive history has contributed to the detriment of indigenous people and in order to move forward we must address and heal from the things that have held us back to create a strong foundation for our communities.

Elaine possesses strong mediation, facilitation and communication skills. She has mentored over 20 First Nations communities in Comprehensive Community Planning, has written 2 CCPs, done political and governance advising for leadership, worked as Chief of Staff for the BC Assembly of First Nations, contracted and worked with provincial and federal government, runs her own planning company and has 2 children ages 6 and 21. She enjoys writing, strength training, running, attending powwows and dancing.