STATUS OF WOMEN–Women Can Gain Election Skills at CampaignSchool Women are greatly outnumbered in every elected decision-makingbody in Nova Scotia, but change begins this fall. Atlantic Canada’s first campaign school for women will be heldNov. 19-21 in Halifax. It will give women who are thinking ofrunning for elected office an opportunity to learn more about theprocess and to gain the skills they need to campaign. The non-partisan school is co-sponsored by the Nova ScotiaAdvisory Council on the Status of Women and Mount Saint VincentUniversity (MSVU). It follows a series of political involvementworkshops hosted by the council over the past two years. “Far too few women are involved in political life in Nova Scotia.We’re half the population, one-fifth of municipal councillors,one-fifth of Atlantic region MPs and one-tenth of MLAs,” saidDoreen Paris, advisory council chair. “We need more women, andwomen from all walks of life.” “Political candidates need many skills for an election campaign.They need to know how to build a team, raise funds, work with themedia, and build rapport with voters,” said Carolyn Bolivar-Getson, Status of Women Minister. “This program develops thoseskills.” Women are often excluded from participating in politics right atthe start, by candidate recruitment and selection processes. Whencandidates are invited to offer through informal networks, thepool of potential candidates is limited, and often limited tomen. The school will help overcome this barrier by giving womeninformation on how to secure a nomination in the first place. Participants will explore their motivations for getting intopolitics, plan a campaign, campaign door to door, practiceworking with the media, and learn about fundraising and budgetingduring the two-and-a-half day program. They will work withexperienced journalists, politicians and campaign planners. “MSVU is strongly committed to women’s education, so thiscampaign school is a natural fit for us. I believe this weekendwill help new women leaders emerge on the political scene,” saidSheila Brown, president and vice-chancellor of MSVU. Participants can apply the skills and knowledge they gain tomunicipal, provincial, federal or First Nations elections. The school will accept 30 applications from women. The sponsorswill work to make sure that participants represent rural andurban communities and diverse backgrounds. Tuition will be $395 per person, with a limited number ofbursaries available for applicants who demonstrate financialneed. Fees include campaign school sessions, training materials,snacks and meals. Transportation and accommodation are theresponsibility of participants. The school will take place on the Mount Saint Vincent Universitycampus. Applications are due Friday, Oct. 22 by 4 p.m. They are availablefrom the Advisory Council on the Status of Women office and onthe website at www.gov.ns.ca/staw . The advisory council is located at Suite 202, 6169 Quinpool Rd.,Halifax. The council can also be reached by telephone at 902-424-8662, or toll-free at 1-800-565-8662. Completed applications canbe faxed to the office at 902-424-0573.