Community Conversation: Building more inclusive communities and poverty solutions

On a beautiful Saturday morning I was joined 20 members of the community for an important conversation. Co-hosted by the Old School Community Gathering Place and Inclusion Works, Laurie Cook (from Inclusion Works led the group for a meaningful and productive discussion.

We started by identifying issues and problems, that led to next steps, and many take-aways in the room.

Below is a press release that outlines what took place, and Laurie’s contact if you have ideas, or would like to be involved.

Looking forward to working together, and keeping  the conversation going.

PRESS RELEASE

Community comes together to provide input on development of poverty solutions strategies being developed Federally, Provincially and Municipally

About 25 people were at the Old School Community Gathering Place in Musquodoboit Harbour for a community conversation about building more inclusive communities and poverty solutions for the area on Saturday, September 16th.

The event was co-hosted by the Old School, MP Sean Fraser and Inclusion Works. Inclusion Works is a new organization on the Shore looking to create more supportive employment and housing options for people on the Eastern Shore. This was their first public event. Councillor David Hendsbee and MLA Kevin Murphy were also on hand.

The event reviewed some new thinking about poverty solutions work, and asked what people in the area thought were the most important things to think about in relation to this work on the Shore – and what most urgently needs to happen.

The top 10 ideas included: better access to transportation, support for community engagement / empowerment, basic income, greater access to health care, more housing options, recognition from all levels of government that the needs of rural populations are different than urban areas, more jobs / employment, more food security programs – not just food banks, greater awareness / education about equity and inclusion and greater access to education and skill development.

Possible next steps that were identified included: that the conversation needs to continue with more people and perspectives involved, a collaborative coalition of organizations needs to be developed to continue this work, and a local Prosperity for All Strategy needs to be developed to help unlock more resources for this work.

All levels of government talked about federal, provincial and municipal planning that’s going on asking for more input on this work. The United Way Halifax was also present to listen and talk about their work with the city to develop a strategy that will be released early December.

People interested in more information about this work are invited to ‘like’ the Old School, Inclusion Works and MP Sean Fraser pages on Facebook.

For more information, contact:
Laurie Cook, Inclusion Works
chutzpah@accesswave.ca
902-889-3578

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