Addressing poverty in Carman

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The Carman Dufferin Poverty Reduction Committee is holding a Community Roundtable to address Poverty Thursday, November 7, from 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at Friends Community Church, 245 – 1st Street NW in Carman.

“What we want to do is get a sense of what poverty looks like in our community and what extent,” announced Debbie Iverson, committee member. “We know it is in every community but we want to look at it specifically for what it means in Carman. We need people who have lived the experience that may live in (poverty) currently, we need those that provide services to stop in, and as we do planning for our community we need to look through the lens of what poverty looks for us in our community.”

As a community, how do we understand the impact of poverty in our local community? How can we as a community work together to build a community of care and support for all who live here?  These are the questions the committee wants to find some answers too.

“Some Canadians are living paycheck to paycheck, and we think of poverty of those that maybe don’t have employment at all but there is also the working poor, struggling people, younger and senior ages as well,” explained Iverson. “Seniors are on a fixed income and younger people aren’t getting enough either. We want to get to some of the factors within our community and look at other ways we can address it at a local level.”

Over this past year, a group of local residents of Carman/Dufferin gathered to begin a conversation around this question which has evolved to form the Carman/Dufferin Poverty Reduction Committee.

Early in the committee conversation, it was recognized that the topic of poverty is one that impacts all community residents of all ages in some way, those who are living or have lived the experience, those who provide supports and services, those who govern our community and oversee our built environment and those who provide education, training, and employment within our community.

To address poverty as a whole, the committee’s first priority was to look to how we can invite the entire community into the conversation to see how we can all play a role in identifying and addressing some of the needs that currently exist in our community.

The committee encourages all residents of Carman/Dufferin to attend as an opportunity to enhance our sense of community as we listen and build upon the perspectives, experiences, and insight of others. The day will provide each participant with an increased awareness of poverty and needs within our community, and identify opportunities to begin to work together as a community to address these needs.

The input of all age groups and walks of life are needed to help make changes in our community for the benefit of all.

The committee invites everyone to attend the Roundtable, by registering at (204) 745-6835 or email: cupc@mymts.net. There is no registration cost and childcare and transportation will be provided as needed.

It is the hope of the committee, that as a result of the community round table event, the residents of Carman/Dufferin will have identified opportunities to address community needs and encourage each participant to consider how they may play a role as an individual or as an organization going forward in addressing these needs together as a community where people live, learn, work and play.

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