The Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force Coordinator Jill Umbach joined Tamarack Institute’s 10 Lived/Living Experience Advisory Committee in 2018 as part of the Vibrant Communities‘ multi-sectoral poverty reduction work. Since 2013, members of our Community Voices have been working with the Poverty Task Force as an advisory committee made up of people with “grounded expertise”. People with grounded expertise deeply understand the realities of poverty in Bruce and Grey Counties. Their stories and experiences serve as powerful tools for building compassion and for disrupting and clarifying a community’s understanding of its roots causes and scope.
10 – Engaging People with Lived/Living Experience includes:
- 10 really good ideas for engaging people with lived/living experience;
- 10 stories that inspire (including #10 story of our Community Voices)
- 10 useful resources;
- 10 ways to get started.
The Guide highlights leading practices, inspires new thinking, and serves as a reminder of how critical engagement of people with lived/living experience in poverty reduction truly is.
Take Your Learning Further (links to resources from Section 4):
The Food Security Action Group (FSAG), a working group of The Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force, and the Grey Bruce Sustainability Network will be working with local food security and food system stakeholders across both counties this spring to take action against food insecurity levels in several communities.
The FSAG will be hosting meetings in Dundalk, Wiarton, Kincardine, Saugeen Shores, and the Town of the Blue Mountains in April and May as part of a Food Security Hub Project funded by the United Way of Bruce Grey. These meetings will bring community organizations, municipal leaders, food producers, and community members to the table for action focused discussions on their communities food security needs. Stakeholders will work together to improve food security services for the community, strengthen their networks and collaborative efforts.
Household food insecurity occurs when a household’s access to food is inadequate or precarious because of inconsistent income or insufficient financial resources. Food insecurity is a good indicator of poverty in our communities. Currently 11% of households in Grey and Bruce County experience food insecurity. Children are at particular risk of negative effects from food insecurity, which is concerning given that 1 in 5 children across Grey County and Bruce County live in a low income household. Being food insecure has profound impacts on physical, mental and social well-being; and places a person at greater risk of becoming a high cost user of the healthcare system.
Despite the severity of the experience, only 1 in 5 food insecure households access traditional food charities. The Food Security Action Group supports the model of a Community Food Centre (CFC), or a hub model to better meet community needs. This model leverages the power of community and creates a sense of belonging that empower all community members to advocate for a better food system.
Community Food Centres (CFCs) or Hubs challenge the line between giver and receiver by giving everyone a place and inviting people with lived experience to be involved in program creation and delivery. Programs develop food literacy and can range from cooking classes to community gardens.
Meaford’s Golden Town Outreach, has made important policy changes and partnerships and has added a variety of programs such as a “gleaning” program where volunteers will harvest excess fruit and share the harvest 3 ways – with the owner, with the volunteers, and with the food bank.
And CMHA Grey Bruce has launched their Fresh Roots food forest and catering services, and is getting ready to open the Fresh Roots Café. The Fresh Roots initiative uses a social enterprise model to support wellness among participants and in the community and creates employment for individuals with mental health concerns.
Town of Blue Mountains, Tuesday, April 30th, 12:30-3:00pm, Beaver Valley Community Centre – 58 Alfred Street, Thornbury RSVP Link
Kincardine, Friday, May 3rd, 12:30-3:00pm, Church of the Messiah – Kincardine Ministerial Food Bank – 421 Russell Street, Kincardine RSVP Link
Dundalk, Thursday, May 9th, 10:00-12:30pm, Erskine Community Health Centre – 90 Artemesia Street, Dundalk RSVP Link
Saugeen Shores, Tuesday, May 14th, 2:30-4:30pm, The Salvation Army – Port Elgin – 553 Bricker Street, Port Elgin RSVP Link
Wiarton, Monday, May 27th, 10:00-12:30pm, Wiarton Salvation Army Community Hub – 576 Edward Street, Wiarton RSVP Link
At the Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force we listen to people in our communities with low income. In the lead up to this election, we asked people with low income what do you want for your families?
“It turns out they want what people of all economic levels want: steady income, a home that is safe and affordable.” says Jill Umbach, Coordinator of the Poverty Task Force. “They want good health care and representatives in government that work together with them to improve their well-being.”
The Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force are asking Municipal Election Candidates and the public – do you know what poverty looks like in Bruce County and Grey County?
We invite municipal candidates and the public to take our Community Survey to test your knowledge!
- Did you know … ensuring formal opportunities to recognize and consult with people with diverse lived experiences builds stronger communities?
- Did you know … support for community food centres and events reduces social isolation, promotes local food, and food skills programs?
- Did you know … prioritizing safe and affordable housing creates safe and healthy neighbourhoods?
- Did you know … income security solutions that include adequate social assistance would strengthen our communities?
The Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force has created a series of infographics with the latest data on poverty in Bruce County and Grey County. Each infographic comes with references to assist you to learn more! Don’t want to read – then you can watch our Community Voices’ videos.
- We All Live Here: toward diversity, inclusion and engagement in municipal decision-making
- From Band-Aids to Bridges: moving forward with Community Food Centres
- From Housing to Homes: safe, healthy homes and communities across Bruce County and Grey County
- Enough to Thrive On: income security solutions for strong communities
- Click on the Learn More button on our 2018 Elections Education page at the end of each infographic to learn more or visit our Resources
- Learn more about the work of the Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force – About Us, Action Groups and Community Voices.
- Subscribe to our blog posts, Facebook and Twitter @BGTaskForce
The Bruce Grey Poverty Task Force identified barriers to voting for people with low income and discussed potential solutions/action. Key questions were raised by people:
- Why should I vote? “My voice won’t have an impact.”
- How do I vote if I don’t have an address or I.D.?
- How do I vote online if I don’t have have a computer?
- How do I know what the candidates are standing for?
- How do I find transportation to a voting station?
Education is key!
The 2018 Municipal Election and School Board election is Monday, October 22. For information about your local election, please visit your local municipality’s website. Each municipality has posted voter information:
In 2018, voters in 14 municipalities will be able to cast their vote online from anywhere they can access the internet or telephone – 24 hours a day in some municipalities. There will be no paper or mail-in ballots.
Three (3) municipalities will use a Vote by Mail methodology.
The YMCA Housing is authorized to verify status for people who are homeless.
Contact your local muncipality for information on All Candidate Debates, Voter Information Sessions and Voter Help lines in your municipality.