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Tamarack Institute

Tamarack Institute
The Tamarack Institute is a connected force for community change. We work with leaders in non-profits, governments, businesses and the community to make work of advancing positive community change easier and more effective. We do this by teaching and writing about collective impact, community engagement, collaborative leadership, community development, and evaluating community impact. We host two learning communities Cities Reducing Poverty and Cities Deepening Community turning theory into action.

Recent Posts

This Is How I picture Community Development!

Posted by Tamarack Institute on January 31, 2017

I recently attended the Evaluating Community Impact workshop that Tamarack hosted. During one of the presentations I thought to myself this is exactly how I picture community development playing out. A slide came across that read, “community change strategies and interventions tend to evolve through an adaptive cycle with different phases.” Hmmm. An example of an Infinity Loop was shown. Around the loop there were 5 different areas. Exploration, Development, Growth, Maturity and Release.

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Sustaining a culture of giving through Canada’s Volunteer Awards

Posted by Tamarack Institute on December 21, 2016

Over the past 150 years Canadian communities have flourished with the help of volunteers.

In fact, Canada is known for its generosity. In 2015, we ranked sixth in the World Giving Index which provides insight into the scope and nature of giving around the world.

Many people and organizations have an important role in sustaining the well-being of communities. They share a common goal with many of us: to make a difference.

Recognising such efforts is why the Canada’s Volunteer Awards are so important.

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Neighbourhood Strategy Built by Neighbours, for Neighbours

Posted by Tamarack Institute on October 6, 2016

Story shared by the Neighbourhood Strategy team in Kitchener, ON

"From the very beginning, we wanted the Strategy to be driven and created by residents," shares Mike Farwell, the resident co-chair of the Neighbourhood Strategy project team. "Based on the variety of ways people were involved and the number of hours people contributed during our community engagement, I am confident the final recommendations of the Neighbourhood Strategy will be firmly rooted in the community." 

The numbers are in and the project team is very excited about the deep and meaningful ways people provided their input: 

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Sharing Successes from Yukon (Whitehorse)

Posted by Tamarack Institute on July 21, 2016
This year the Yukon Anti-Poverty Coalition celebrates the 20th Anniversary of their poverty reduction work in the Yukon territory and in Whitehorse specifically. They've undergone much development and evolution as a group over the years, dependent on the current need and passion expressed by the community. They actively listen to residents, and have taken on the role as a spawning ground for other organizations and projects to take hold (ex. the downtown urban garden society, and the local Habitat for Humanity chapter).

Here, with Bill Thomas, Co-Chair of the Yukon Anti-Poverty Coalition (YAPC), we take a look at how their values and priorities are bringing local youth to the coalition's advocacy, awareness, and action priorities to reduce poverty and create stronger leaders.
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The Potential of Merging Public Policy with Community Development

Posted by Tamarack Institute on March 29, 2016

What would happen if we blended community development with public policy? Would we be better off if local governments took a community development approach to municipal administration? Vibrant communities are built when citizens and local government work together to make change. The best way to determine the answers to these questions is to study the work of municipal government advisory committees.

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Making History: Cambridge Adopts a Living Wage

Posted by Tamarack Institute on March 29, 2016

The living wage movement is growing across Canada. The private, public, and non-profit sectors are seeing a rapid uptake of employers commited to paying employees a livable wage. Now, municipal governments are considering how the living wage and other income security initiatives are able to reduce poverty for residents and build healthier communities and economies.

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