The Sharing Our Future layers of communication.

1. The public discussion of local issues and cultural celebration using the traditional community television public forum with phone-ins.

2. Internet technology to network the community communication facilitators who work in about 12 communities separated from each other (project website, online learning guides and forms, facilitator do-it-yourself reporting websites, email, web discussion boards).

3. Sharing Our Future also encourages networking among community development - economic, social, education, health and economic - professionals in the region. This networking is actually part of the mandate of the Community Education Network - which is the sponsoring partner of Sharing Our Future. One of Ryakuga's most popular web discussion boards - more than 1,000 posts - is used by the local coordinators of Communities In Schools Newfoundland.

Another partner, the Long Range Regional Economic Development Board, hosts a list serve for community economic development professionals. Many of the community communications facilitators work closely with the economic development field officers. A central focus of discussion among the Sharing Our Future committee members and the facilitators is the relationship of community economic development and participatory community communications. It was the main topic at the October 2001 facilitators' conference which also included a community roundtable. The economic development board's field officers also attended this event.

4. Reaching out to expatriates. One of the most interesting aspects of civil society using the internet is how dispersed communities and families are using the medium to strengthen or regain contact. One of our facilitators maintains Email for Expatriates which is essentially local news and photos which he sends around the world to people who subscribe. He also answers questions.

Providing a link to expatriates was once of the reasons we developed internet radio - for us this means webcasting the audio of community forums and cultural events; this "streaming audio" is also archived on a website.

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