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What is the Cities Reducing Poverty Learning Community?

In April 2011, Tamarack - An Institute for Community Engagement invited nine cities and a small number of provincial and national network representatives to a meeting in Kitchener to discuss the power and potential of developing a learning network of cities collaborating together to reduce poverty. The cities included 5 Vibrant Communities partners and 4 other cities/regions with collaborative roundtables. At the conclusion of the meeting, the nine cities and regional partners returned to their communities, shared the results of the discussions and formally affirmed their commitment to working collaboratively in the development of the Cities Reducing Poverty effort. Together, these cities/regions determined the following aspiration and path for moving forward.

Aspiration: IMAGINE...100 Cities....Reducing Poverty....Together

Vision: To create Vibrant Communities by significantly reducing the human, social and
economic cost of poverty for Canadian cities.

Mission: We will create a connected learning community of 100 Canadian cities or regions with multi-sector roundtables addressing poverty reduction. Our goal is aligned poverty reduction strategies in cities, provinces and the federal government resulting in
reduced poverty for 1 million Canadians.

Cities Reducing Poverty Learning Community

We will actively recruit and engage multi-sector poverty roundtables in all provinces and territories in a way that respects the local priorities and approaches. By 2016, 100 cities with multi-sector poverty reduction roundtables will be active members of the Cities Reducing Poverty Learning Community. We will identify and measure effective practices and show concrete poverty reduction results in Canadian cities.

All cities that join the Cities Reducing Poverty Learning Community agree to:

  • Actively participate in the Learning Community through regularly sharing knowledge, resources and progress with each other
  • Participate in the development of and signing on to a Cities Reducing Poverty Charter;
  • Agree to a common evaluation framework and annually report on poverty reduction results.
  • Annually provide $1,000 toward the operation of the network

As a Learning Community, we will invest in communities through the:

  • Development of a business plan which frames the return on investment in poverty reduction efforts for
  • cities;
  • Development of a policy framework for reducing the human, social and economic costs of poverty;
  • Advocate for aligned municipal, provincial and federal poverty reduction strategies.

As a Learning Community, we will work towards shifting attitudes about poverty by:

  • Hosting a national Cities Reducing Poverty summit in 2012;
  • Engaging a multi-sector leadership team who will advise the development of the Cities Reducing Poverty network and advocate for alignment of poverty reduction strategies at a national level;
  • Developing an effective communications strategy.

The value of participating in the Cities Reducing Poverty Network includes:

  • membership in a professional network of cities/regions doing similar poverty reduction work;
  • ability to participate in on-going learning including 10 tele-learning events and a National Summit on poverty;
  • ability to join at least 3 - 5 communities of practice (living wage, evaluation, etc);
  • six researched E-Magazines a year focusing on Cities Reducing Poverty;
  • reduced enrollment fees for Tamarack-sponsored face to face learning events.
  • Access to an on-line learning community (www.vibrantcanada.ca) containing tools and resources, national views and profiles of poverty reduction efforts
  • Being part of a collaborative effort that will see a reduction in poverty in Canada!

If your city/region is working on poverty reduction using a multi-sector approach we’d love to hear from you! Simply complete the following form for more information and we will get in touch with you within the week.

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Please also sign me up for Engage!, Tamarack's free award winning e-magazine, that provides useful resources and interesting articles on collaboration, leadership and community engagement.
Please also sign me up for Tamarack's Cities Reducing Poverty Communiqué. A monthly e-magazine about poverty reduction across Canada.

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Download the Cities Reducing Poverty Brochure!