The Friendship Agreement: The Commitment Between the Three Partners Continues!

Elected Officials from the MRC de Papineau, the MRC d’Argenteuil, and the United Counties of Prescott and Russell (UCPR) gathered on Tuesday, August 29, 2023, at Kenauk Nature to reflect on the future of the Friendship Agreement, an innovative interregional partnership that has been in existence for 11 years.

Ratified on August 30, 2012, in Thurso, the Friendship Agreement aims to enable the three regions to work towards the development of frank and sincere relationships as well as to maintain privileged ties through various activities that facilitate mutual understanding and knowledge of each territory. It also encourages the creation of natural and strategic alliances in the areas of culture, heritage, recreational tourism, education, sports, the environment, and social commitment.

The Friendship Agreement has led to numerous achievements over the past decade, including the signing of the Friendship Agreement, the launch of the Cycl-O-Route, the Ottawa River Protection Declaration, and a partnership with the Ottawa Riverkeeper. As part of this partnership, the three communities have organized a total of nine shoreline cleanups and launched an app for self-collection and quantification of the amount of waste removed from the region’s waterways.

In this eleventh year of existence, the time was right to give ourselves a new impetus. During the afternoon, the Elected Officials discussed the future of the Friendship Agreement. “Following a number of discussions, the results speak for themselves; the Elected Officials want to continue working together to bring new projects to the table,” specifies the Reeve of the MRC de Papineau, Benoit Lauzon.

“We have every reason to be proud of the results achieved to date thanks to the work carried out between our three territories. We reiterated our interest in continuing this collaboration by confirming our common objectives. I am confident that the Friendship Agreement will continue to support the socio-economic development of our territories while enabling us to join forces in the areas of sustainable development and recreational tourism,” indicates Normand Riopel, Warden of the United Counties of Prescott and Russell.

“Our Friendship Agreement was developed around the idea of preserving, conserving, and valuing the Ottawa River. It is clear today that what is emerging is even greater and even arouses the interest of other regions. The complicity that unites our people, combined with the complementary nature of our territories, inspires us to undertake projects on themes that we haven’t tackled within the framework of the Friendship Agreement until now,” mentions the Reeve of the MRC d’Argenteuil, Scott Pearce.

Following the day’s discussions, a Committee will be mandated to ensure the implementation of new projects and the continuity of existing projects, including the Cycl-O-Route and the iCollecte app.

Posted on 08/31/2023
Reeve Benoit Lauzon offering a present to Reeve Scott Pearce and Mayor Pierre Leroux.