Nothing About Us Without Us
Sharing the experience of vulnerability in hopes of bettering the world is an important contribution to make. Listening to these experiences is the only way to ensure we’re working on the right things. To request this of people, you have to consider the circumstances of the person you’re seeking contributions from, you have to ensure you aren’t further disadvantaging the person with your request. You have to understand what you’re asking for. You need to know what you’re going to do with what you hear. You have to be committed to acting upon it, no matter what the advice or experience reveals.
Working this way asks all those involved with EndPovertyEdmonton to cast aside their preconceived notions about what the experience of poverty is like, what it’s caused by and what it does. It asks us all to really listen - not just for what we want to hear - but for what is actually happening, and then take steps to work on it in non-tokenistic ways. It must drive to action.
The EPE Indigenous Circle and participants with lived experience have been instrumental in moving this work forward for EPE by developing the First Voice Inclusion and Equity Protocol, which guides EPE in compensating individuals equally and in respectful ways. The Protocol is framed on Indigenous values of giving and gifting, respecting reciprocity. It seeks to prevent stigmatization.
EndPovertyEdmonton also seeks to include the voice of lived experience in all we do through full inclusion at community tables, reviews of materials, and suggestions and recommendations for policy advocacy. This website hosts guest-authored blog posts describing the experiences of poverty in all its forms, in the author’s own words.
We live in the world of big data, but as a recent Globe and Mail article noted, Canada (and Edmonton) lag behind in collecting and sharing data.
To some extent, this is true about poverty in our city as well. While we have much relevant data and incredible research work to draw upon and to begin developing promising practice, we don’t have everything we need to get us to our goal. Not all community partners are equipped, resourced or are even capturing all the data points we need.
This is why EndPovertyEdmonton makes a commitment to increasing Edmonton’s capacity for research and evaluation-- to collect and share the data that will help everyone in our community make better decisions. We’re committed to influencing the measures we’re using so they truly reflect what Edmontonians want for our future.
There is a word in Cree, kîyânaw, which means “for all of us.” By firmly believing that we are all in this together, our capacity to build relationships of trust with one another forms from the foundation of community cohesion.
It will take all of us moving in the same direction to end poverty. Edmontonians understand that big things like poverty cannot be solved by one person or one group working in a vacuum. The root causes of poverty are complex, and they span sectors, people, industries, approaches and levels of government.
By making space for people from all backgrounds, EndPovertyEdmonton is working to achieve a more coordinated and supported approach to ending poverty in our city.
Prosperity for All
Building a community where everyone prospers means we all need to work together. It’s going to take action and ideas from all Edmontonians to build a strong economic and social legacy for our children and grandchildren. This means looking for solutions that consider business, government, individuals and organizations.