L-R: Marjie Lesko, Nelson at its Best/Together Nelson project manager; Malorie Moore, Nelson WorkBC Centre, agency social worker/Together Nelson leadership round table co-chair; Tom Atkins, Nelson and District Credit Union, senior manager-member experience; and Andrea Wilkey, Community Futures Central Kootenay, executive director/Together Nelson leadership round table member. Photo: Submitted

L-R: Marjie Lesko, Nelson at its Best/Together Nelson project manager; Malorie Moore, Nelson WorkBC Centre, agency social worker/Together Nelson leadership round table co-chair; Tom Atkins, Nelson and District Credit Union, senior manager-member experience; and Andrea Wilkey, Community Futures Central Kootenay, executive director/Together Nelson leadership round table member. Photo: Submitted

Community-based action plan set to reduce poverty in Nelson

Together Nelson will bring stakeholders together in the spring

Submitted by Together Nelson

Nelson is a great place to live. But not everyone is thriving in our community. Close to 2,000 community members live in poverty in Nelson – friends and neighbours, children, youth, adults and seniors.

Together Nelson is a community-based initiative that was launched last fall to better understand local poverty in order to create a four-year action plan to reduce poverty in Nelson.

This spring, community members across diverse demographics including local businesses, local government and government offices, along with social sector agencies and non-profits, will be invited to participate in community engagement sessions to further inform Together Nelson about the current state of poverty in Nelson. It will identify what changes our community would like to see to address poverty at the local level, and to brainstorm and prioritize collaborative solutions than can be implemented to address and reduce poverty.

Sessions will focus on six key areas of our community: education and training, employment and income, housing, families, children and youth, health and mental health care, and social supports.

Together Nelson knows the importance of hearing from people with lived experience of poverty and would like to ensure people’s experiences are at the heart of what is being developed. The initiative knows the best way of creating an action plan to reduce poverty is to involve people with direct experience of poverty in sharing agendas and explaining key issues relating to poverty. To that end, Together Nelson is delighted to announce opportunities to do just that.

Thanks to donations from two local organizations, Nelson and District Credit Union and Kootenay Career Development Society, Together Nelson is able to broaden and deepen the initiative’s ability to offer safe and meaningful opportunities for community members with lived or living experience of poverty to connect with, advise on, and help shape the creation of the action plan. Participation on the initiative’s Leadership Round Table, in Community Engagement sessions and through an ongoing, longer term Lived Experience Advisory Committee are three key pathways for involvement.

If you have any lived expertise of poverty and would like help shape the creation of a Plan to reduce local poverty, Together Nelson would like to hear from you.

For more information, email bestofnelson@hotmail.com or visit bestnelson.org.

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