We know you’ll receive a warm welcome when you arrive in Nova Scotia. To really feel at home, the next step will be to really immerse yourself in your community. Here are a few tips on ways to reach out and meet folks (being sure to follow all health guidelines, of course).
Introduce yourself in the neighbourhood
If you’re the outgoing sort, just go ahead and say hello folks you meet in your everyday routine. A quick introduction to the barista, mail carrier, or group you see playing frisbee at your neighbourhood park is all you need to start. If an in-person introduction isn’t quite your speed, consider writing a quick hello on a card and popping it in your neighbour’s mailbox. You could even include a blank card for them to return one to you.
Search Facebook for local groups
Many communities, schools, and even streets have informal Facebook groups where folks gather online. Joining a few will help keep you up to date on local information and happenings, but also give you a chance to connect with people individually. It’s also a great place to ask questions, like recommendations for restaurants or after school activities!
Seek volunteer opportunities around your passions
If you were involved in a national organization back home, it’s possible your new community has a chapter. Or, you can simply search for organizations whose purpose matches things about which you are knowledgeable or passionate. There’s nothing like doing good work together to form new friendships. Check out Volunteer Nova Scotia or Nova Scotia Land Trust to get started.
Find a way to workout
Whether you’re a regular gym goer, a weekend outdoor enthusiast, or committed to a particular sport, finding a place or group that shares your preference is a great way to connect – and stay active while you’re at it! Facebook is a good tool for finding less formal groups, but be sure to search regional or provincial organizations around your topic of interest too. Here are just a few for your consideration: Recreation Nova Scotia, Hike Nova Scotia, and Swim Nova Scotia.
Find a place of worship
Joining a new faith community is a great way to set down roots in your new home. It will provide you not only with a place of worship, but also any connected community initiatives or organizations.
Volunteer at school
If your family includes a school-aged child, it’s likely they’ll welcome any offers to volunteer with open arms. Ask your child’s teacher or the school administrator how you can get involved or join the Nova Scotia Federation of Home and School Associations.
Town or city council
Municipal governments are the heart of our communities. Getting in touch (or at least following them on social media) will not only help you stay up to date on things like garbage collection but staff are only too happy to help you with any questions you need answered.
Attend live entertainment
Most communities, even the smallest ones, will have a space for live entertainment, COVID-19 depending. Soak up some Nova Scotian culture while getting a chance to say hello to the locals. Here are a few resources to get you started planning: 7 Halifax Pubs with Live Music; Ceilidhs & Kitchen Parties in Cape Breton; and, Music Events in Nova Scotia.
Visit the library
Today’s libraries offer so much more than books. Not only will you find staff who are ready to help you learn about your new home, but they often offer great classes, events for children, and usually have computers available for public use if you’re still waiting for your home services to be installed. Find your local library using this map.
Take a class
It’s not just schools and libraries that offer learning opportunities. Many communities, recreational groups, and arts and cultural organizations will offer classes and programs throughout the year, such as NSCAD. Whether you’d like to learn how to identify local mushrooms, dance a jig, or throw a pot, chances are there’s a class near you.