First Call is proud of what our coalition has accomplished in 2016.
From holding government to account for BC’s child poverty crisis to stopping yet another clawback to amplifying the voices of foster youth, together we’ve done some amazing work to put BC’s children and youth first.
Here are highlights of key successes, victories, communications and outreach in 2016.
WE HELD GOVERNMENT TO ACCOUNT FOR BC’S CHILD POVERTY CRISIS
Our 2016 BC Child Poverty Report Card highlighted the growing income inequality that has one in five of our kids living in poverty, and our failure to properly support youth as they leave foster care. Take action at still1in5.ca
POLICY VICTORY: ANOTHER CLAWBACK ENDS!
Following a human rights complaint and advocacy by the First Call coalition, our members, families and community organizations, the BC government ended the clawback of EI maternity benefits. firstcallbc.org/end-the-clawbacks
WE CERTIFIED OUR 75TH LIVING WAGE EMPLOYER
The Living Wage for Families Campaign signed on 25 new Living Wage Employers, including Quesnel, the 2nd municipality in Canada to be certified! Vancouver, Parksville and Port Coquitlam passed living wage policies while Port Moody and Pitt Meadows are exploring potential impacts. livingwageforfamilies.ca
WE HOSTED A POVERTY REDUCTION-LIVING WAGE SUMMIT
Living Wage for Families and the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition hosted a summit that brought together 75 activists from across BC to strengthen their anti-poverty work and build capacity around the living wage. livingwageforfamilies.ca/summit
WE HELD A BC PUBLIC EDUCATION FUNDING FORUM
First Call cohosted an education forum with Simon Fraser University and Your Education Matters. Front-line workers told stories of wait lists for special-needs children, kids coming to school hungry and the deficits in recognizing Indigenous children’s cultures. youtube.com/user/educmatters
WE AMPLIFIED THE VOICES OF YOUTH AGING OUT OF FOSTER CARE
Working with the Vancouver Foundation, the Society for Children and Youth of BC and the Canadian Federation of University Women-BC, we amplified stories told by foster youth and called for policy that extends supports to age 25. still1in5.ca/faces-of-child-poverty and soundcloud.com/aswordspreads
WE CELEBRATED OUR WORK IN THE CHILD AND YOUTH SECTOR
Our 2016 fundraising gala with Trevor Linden and youth leaders was the most successful yet! Join us at our 2017 gala on Feb. 23 to honour Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond, the former BC rep for children and youth. firstcallbc.org/gala
OUR YEAR IN NUMBERS