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North Fork Ambulance begins its strategic planning process

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The North Fork Ambulance Association hosted a strategic planning meeting on Saturday, April 6, as a step toward preparing for the next phase of this 50-year-old non-profit. Once the NFAA is no longer providing ambulance service later this year, and the newly formed special district, North Fork EMS, takes over ambulance operations, the NFAA will begin to function with a new mission statement and direction.

The board was joined by representatives from all three communities served by the NFAA and engaged representatives from key stakeholder groups -- EMTs and property owners, all of whom are members of the NFAA and community supporters. During the workshop, the participants discussed and prioritized ideas and identified needs for the future of the NFAA. The board of directors for the NFAA, with community input, want to have a strategic plan in place that will be used as a guide over the next three years. The workshop, facilitated by Welborn & Associates, included participant's discussion and prioritization of steps that should be taken to ensure the sustainability of the non-profit as the NFAA takes on a new role in the North Fork Valley.

The board is finalizing a new mission and vision for the non-profit that keeps the health and wellbeing of the three communities they serve at the forefront. The board envisions a broadening of their services to compliment the ambulance services that will be provided by the special health district, while being good fiscal stewards of the current assets and developing new funding sources to sustain the organization for another 50 years. In additional to the work associated with the transition between the NFAA and the special district, the strategic plan includes four target categories -- operations, programming, fundraising, and community relations.

Board president Mara Derryberry said, "The work is just beginning as we embrace the new opportunity before us and create a new resource within these three communities to support a healthy and strong community."

Additional community participation will be sought as the board finalizes committee work and seeks additional input.

The board has a full agenda for its meeting this week, Wednesday, April 10, at 7 p.m. in the NFAA headquarters building at 110 E. Hotchkiss Avenue, including additional work on the strategic planning effort. The meeting is open to the public.

Comments from the strategic planning workshop indicate the importance of ensuring a successful transition of roles and responsibilities include ample public input. Once the strategic plan is completed, additional public outreach and communications are planned.

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