We recently had the opportunity to sit down and chat with Jane Cooper, a long time resident of Centre Wellington and the former Executive Director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Centre Wellington about how the community has evolved and what makes life in Centre Wellington so great. Check out her answers below!
In 1981, our family moved from a large suburban area – Mississauga – looking for a smaller community to raise our children, within a reasonable proximity to Toronto due to my husband, Bob’s business. We were welcomed into a Fergus neighbourhood with a mix of young families and we established Fergus families, school, church and downtown close by. We developed long-lasting friendships, as did our 4 children.
Over the years, the community has changed and grown. What was a community of 5,000 people, in 1981, has become a substantial urban island surrounded by farmland, with a population of approximately 31,000.
I eventually started to work for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Centre Wellington and retired as Executive Director after 26 years. What a terrific career it was and I loved my job!! I experienced, first-hand, the wonderful support for children and agency’s such as ours withing Centre Wellington. Local volunteers, businesses, service clubs, politicians, families, schools, church groups and restaurants supported our programs and fundraising initiatives year after year and continue to do so!
This community is so unique in the sense that there is so much to offer. It has amazing natural beauty – the Elora Gorge, picturesque towns and cultural events – Fergus Scottish Festival, the Elora Festival, Wellington County Museum, Elora Arts Centre. There is an abundance of programs for children – top line sports teams and facilities, drama, camps and a county wide library system. The Senior Centre is a thriving, active facility with over 1000 members and so many programs. Having a local hospital has been such an asset and medical connections with top larger hospital centres provides excellent care to our residents. In 2020, a new hospital will open as well.
As parents of 4 active children, we joyfully look back on a lot of time spent at the local swimming pool (swim team), the community centre and local parks (kids playing hockey, ringette, baseball, dance etc.) and our teens starting their first jobs locally!! Now retired, Bob and I have the time to broaden our interests, volunteering at local festivals, fundraisers, participating in programs at the Senior’s Centre, hiking locally as well as the nearby Bruce Trail and enjoying local eateries with friends.
Centre Wellington has been a great place to raise our family; we feel a strong sense of belonging in this community, it’s home! For anyone planning to live in this area, I would recommend getting involved. There’s much to embrace here, lots of volunteer opportunities, programs for all ages and a good mix of services and housing as our community grows. What a wise decision it was to make the move!! Experience it!
To learn more about Big Brothers Big Sisters of Centre Wellington and to get involved in the services and programs in which it offers check out their website: https://centrewellington.bigbrothersbigsisters.ca/
Address: 195 St David St S, Fergus, ON N1M 2L4
Phone: (519) 787-0106
** If you would like to be involved in our 5 Questions Community Highlight project, we would love to work with you! Contact Amy Stephens at firstname.lastname@example.org for more info!