Evidence-Based Planning - Meaningful Dialogue - Strategic Action

My Philosophy of Adult Education

Over the past twenty years in my work as a planner, across multiple contexts including environment, urban, rural, health and strategy, I have come to embrace an approach to facilitation, engagement and leadership that is rooted in adult education. I believe that when engaging in decision-making processes within the context of systems change, policy development, service delivery or quality improvement, for example, that the people being impacted by decisions must be active participants in the decision-making process. Furthermore, to bring about transformational change, the kind of change required today within our local communities, organizations and systems, adult educators must strengthen opportunities for mutual learning and collective action. The systems that are in existence no longer serve the needs of the larger community or society, therefore significant change is required. A shift from patriarchal to more inclusive, equitable and just systems based on feminist ideology is not just a good thing to do, it is necessary. 

Over the past several years in my local community, I have had the wonderful opportunity to volunteer and learn alongside several transformational women leaders who have and continue to make significant impacts in Pictou County. Together, five community leaders and I have convened a series of community conversations through Pictou County 2020, and this work has increased my knowledge and capacity for community development, adult education and women's leadership. I learn best by doing, and I learn better by working and learning alongside others who are passionate about ensuring our organizations, communities and systems are inclusive, welcoming, equitable and sustainable.

believe in a foundational principle that all people, organizations and communities have assets and strengths.  

believe in fostering diversity and embracing inclusion, ensuring that there is equitable access to resources and potential for opportunities, for all people. 

I believe in the power of knowledge, inclusive of many ways of knowing across the rich human experience.  

I believe in building capacity and learning opportunities for positive social change, including a right that all people affected by decisions deserve to be involved in the decision-making processes.


About Me

JAIME SMITH is an adult educator, planner, facilitator and leader.

Prior to establishing Marram Consulting in 2013, she was a Member of the Canadian Institute of Planners, working with the New Brunswick Department of Environment, the Halifax Regional Municipality, and the New Brunswick Rural District Planning Commission. 

In 2008 Jaime explored the transferability of her planning skills and joined the Pictou County Health Authority as a community health planner.  This is where Jaime unearthed her love for healthy communities and a population health approach to community development. 

Jaime has a wealth of experience in community engagement and consultation, garnered through her work with various boards and groups such as the Committee for the Pictou County Wellness Centre, the Pictou County Health Authority Board of Directors, and the Aberdeen Health Foundation.  In 2015 Jaime was appointed by Minister Leo Glavine, Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness, as a Board Director for the Nova Scotia Health Authority. During her tenure (2015-2020) on the NSHA Board of Directors, Jaime became the in aural chair of the Committee for Public Engagement. 

Jaime is an active volunteer and engages in her local community. Since moving to Pictou County in 2008 with her husband and children, Jaime has been a leader in the Welcoming Communities Initiative, the New Glasgow Music Festival, and Pictou County 2020. In April 2021, Jaime will join the board of the Aberdeen Palliative Care Society, an organization that she believes is an essential part of a healthycommunity, across the full spectrum of life including inclusive and equitable access to end of life care.

Jaime has a Bachelor of Arts Degree, Environmental Studies, Geoscience and Biology, from Mount Allison University, and a Bachelor of Design Degree, Honours Environmental Planning, from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design.  She is currently enrolled in the Masters of Adult Education Program (Community Development stream) at St. Francis Xavier University. Jaime is an Art of Hosting practitioner, a student of Asset-Based, Citizen-led Community Development (ABCD), Worldview Intelligence (C, and systems thinking, and is a member of the International Association for Public Participation (IAP2).

Past Projects Utilizing Adult Education Practice:

Pictou County Health Authority Annual Retreat (Board of Directors and Senior Leadership Team), May - June 2013

Municipal Alcohol Project, Phase 1 - Northern Nova Scotia District Health Authorities/ Addiction Services and Municipal UnitsDecember 2013 - April 2014

Central and East Pictou, and Pictou West Community Health Boards, 2014-2019 Community Health Plan, June 2013 - June 2014

Aberdeen Health Foundation Strategic Plan Development, February - September 2014

Municipal Alcohol Project Phases 1 & 2, Pictou County, Pictou County Health Authority, Addictions and Mental Health ServicesOctober 2013 - February 2014; September - December 2014

Municipal Alcohol Project - Amherst, Cumberland District Health Authority, Addictions and Mental Health Services, September 2014 - January 2015

Guysborough, Antigonish and Strait Richmond Community Health Boards, Community EngagementNovember 2014 - March 2015

Nova Scotia Prevention of Gambling and Gambling Harm among Youth (Collaboration of all NS Health Regions and the IWK)November 2014 - July 2015

Community Readiness: Youth Gambling Prevention in Colchester-East Hants, Community Readiness: Youth Gambling Prevention in Cumberland County, Community Readiness: Youth Gambling Prevention in Pictou County, Nova Scotia Health Authority, Addictions and Mental Health Services, April 2015 - October 2015

Maritime Resident Doctors Annual Retreat, October 2015

Seniors and Isolation: Exploring the "Facts", Nova Scotia Community Links, Seniors Outreach, Pictou County Municipalities Crime Prevention Association, Pictou County Ageing Well Together CoalitionFebruary 2015-February 2016

Aberdeen Health Foundation, Population Health Project, October 2015 - March 2016

CHAD Transit Strategic Planning, October 2015 - January 2016

Municipal Alcohol Project, Pictou County Intergenerational Engagement Sessions, January - March 2016

Pictou County MOU Committee, Forum Series (Youth Engagement, Economic and Social Development Sectors), April - May 2016

Action Hepatitis Canada, Atlantic Region Workshop, May - June 2016

Summer Street Board of Directors Strategic Planning Process, Phase 1 Visioning and Community Engagement, February 2016 - September 2016

Town of New Glasgow, Facilitation and Community Engagement, January 2016 - April 2016

Summer Street Board of Directors Strategic Planning Process, Phase 2, November 2016 - September 2017