Rose Sharma is running for Sparwood council.
Educated in botany and education, she has been a resident of Sparwood since 1974, and raised four daughters in town with her husband Pal.
Sharma worked as a substitute teacher for local schools, and has a long history of volunteer work with groups like the Skating Club, a mom’s group, a ladies cooking club and the Welcome Wagon for new families moving to Sparwood.
She received a B.C. achievement award for her community work, and currently is the president of the Sparwood Arts Council and president of the Community Garden. She has also been an organizer for community events like the Fall Fair for crafters and businesses, Taste of Sparwood and Arts and Culture Week.
In an interview with The Free Press, she said she has ran for council before, and that she decided to run again because people have asked her to and she wants to be part of making decisions for the community.
“If you want to do something, be part of it and change. Don’t complain in the end if it’s not being changed.”
Sharma spoke about the need for housing in the community, adding that the municipality is working on it, and that such things do not happen overnight.
She spoke about the limited health care in town, and emphasized the idea of public transportation for out of town health appointments for seniors and other residents.
Sharma also spoke about ensuring transparent government that has open communication and connection with residents.
“We need town people, council, and public to connect. Together, we have to see what’s the problem, how do you solve it. No problem can be solved by one person on one day, it takes time, but at least when you know, if this is a priority, we should be working on it.”
She spoke about incentives for small businesses to stay in the community, such as tax reliefs for a year.
“Then you’re giving that person a chance to survive.”
She also spoke about promoting further awareness about multiculturalism and cultivating cross-cultural connection, which she said was her passion.
“All these groups are here, why not mingle them, have events, different time, different ethnicity,” she said, adding that the new plaza being built could be used for that purpose.
She said that achievements should be attained through unity, not through single individuals.
“It has to be a united front. And then we all have to be on the same page, and we have to think before we go ahead and spend the money.”
“If we don’t have the money, no funds, no grants, you cannot tax taxpayers, because some tax payers are fixed income people.”
The election is taking place on Oct. 15.