SPAN Nelson formed in 2006. We work to strengthen community well-being through multi-sector collaboration, community participation, research and action.  We are a registered non-profit society, governed by an active board of directors.


We start from the premise that Nelson can become an even more caring, inclusive, dignified and socially just community.

We believe this safe and healthy Nelson is a place where everyone has an equal voice in defining problems and offering solutions to improve the quality of life.

In this way, SPAN can be seen as Nelson’s Community Well-Being Action Network.


We provide collaborative, action-oriented leadership to bring the community together in creating a sustainable quality of life for everyone. We identify priorities for action based on community research, participation and public dialogue.

To do this we:

  • Identify community quality of life issues as they emerge
  • Generate research and information on these issues
  • Engage and collaborate with various and diverse sectors
  • Engage with the larger community to discuss and deepen knowledge around key issues
  • Act as a catalyst by providing recommendations for action to appropriate community and governmental agencies



We function in collaboration, cooperation and coordination among all sectors, striving for and encouraging participation and input from a variety of voices around current and emerging issues.

In identifying and responding to social needs, we share power, leadership, information and resources; we operate transparently; and communicate in ways that everyone can understand.

Social planning involves all important aspects of community life — economic, cultural, environmental and social — the broad social sector itself includes health, recreation, transportation, public safety, governance, the political realm, as well as the social service sector.

Our focus is the inter-connectedness of these many sectors, the place where lasting solutions are best identified and then realized.

The word ’social’ in social planning can lead to some misunderstanding. It is true that SPAN endeavours to facilitate a community development approach to social justice. It is rights-based in its approach and thus pays particular attention to our most vulnerable citizens.

It is important to underscore that SPAN Nelson, while including the important voice of the social sector, is not itself a social service organization, nor is it a social sector only activity. SPAN is a multi sector community initiative.



A safe and healthy community in which everyone has an equal voice in defining problems and offering solutions to improve quality of life.


SPAN Nelson strengthens the community by providing collaborative, action-oriented leadership in building a caring, inclusive, dignified and socially just community.


  • To work collaboratively across sectors to identify and respond to the major social issues of the community
  • To generate research and information
  • To build awareness on social issues and the inter-connectedness between sectors
  • To provide opportunities where people can raise existing and new community issues which need a coordinated response
  • To integrate social needs into all aspects of community planning
  • To provide recommendations to community and governmental agencies on the funding allocations, social development programming and planning initiatives
  • To develop, and provide ongoing evaluation and revision to, a community social plan


  • Collaboration, cooperation and coordination across all sectors of the community
  • Community participation and input from a variety of voices
  • Inclusiveness, diversity, and equity both within the organization and in its relations with the community
  • Transparency of process and communication in ways that everyone can understand
  • Sharing of power, information, resources and leadership
  • Action on practical, effective solutions
  • Recognition and celebration of contributions to community


Find out more about the current focus of our work and our Strategic Plan 2017-2019 Strategic Plan


Find out more about our inception and history within the community SPAN HistoryOur Accomplishments

SPAN membership is inclusive & multi-sectoral