Earlier this month, I had the pleasure of attending the annual conference for our partners, the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, and presenting as part of their closing plenary. I was asked to share my vision for Canada in 2040. This gave me the chance to reflect on what Canada could look like if we steer our collective capacity toward eradicating poverty and deepening community as we embrace newcomers to Canada.
As part of my presentation to FCM, I highlighted that Canada will need to develop conditions and mechanism to accept many new residents in the coming years. Over the next 25 years, at a minimum, Canada will be asked to accept 7.5 million newcomers including 1.5 million refugees. As a Country, our best way to prepare will be to eradicate poverty and deepen our sense of community. Fortunately, visionary cities throughout Canada have already started this work and the trends look promising.
The growing networks of cities and governments working to reduce poverty and deepen community are significant because they create conditions that are positive for current residents to live, make the community more welcoming, and help citizens and communities develop skills to lead together. Through the practices of collective impact, collaborative leadership and community engagement, these communities develop skills and tools for inclusion, cooperation and collective problem solving.
I have turned my speech to FCM into an article to better share the work of our Cities Reducing Poverty and Cities Deepening Community networks, and to highlight the way that this work is perfectly suited to the work of accepting 7.5 million newcomers over the next 25 years.
Article: Welcome the Stranger
Case Study: Social Innovation and Community Economic Development in Vancouver
Case Study: Oxford County: Leveraging a Community Sustainability Plan to Tackle Poverty
Case Study: Love My Hood: Kitchener’s Neighbourhood Strategy
Case Study: Kamloops: The Path to an Inclusive and Accessible Community