At our first PRAC meeting of this year we had lots of fun and already PRAC members are planning exciting new activities. We started the fun playing a quick game where we all had to guess two truths and one lie about each other. Then Tom and Scott, of ACORN BC gave a presentation about their organization and the work that they do. There was lots of interest in hearing about how ACORN works, and especially about their “digital divide” campaign for securing affordable access to the Internet for low-income households, and their international efforts to cap remittance fees so people can send money to their families abroad more easily. We were also surprised to hear ACORN BC members are out knocking doors for four hours six days a week. That is commitment for sure!
Afterward, Trish updated the group about the work of the BC Poverty Reduction Coalition, and the highlights of 2013. There was an interesting discussion around the current consultations on disabilities that the BC government is hoisting, especially when we heard that the provincial government is engaging in a “clawback” of benefits for single mothers. And so we talked about how could PRAC members participate and be as effective as possible: First, we should all make sure to visit the resources page we have created, and then get in touch with us, maybe we’ll go together!
Then, we started brainstorming possible activities and ideas to keep raising awareness about the need for a poverty reduction plan in BC. The first idea was to keep using the awesome #rethinkgiving campaign and adapt it to other possible opportunities to talk about charity and justice.
And after some more deliberation, the PRAC came up with two awesome ideas for the near future:
1. To organize a “Poverty myth busters” campaign, which will look into the common misconceptions about what causes poverty, who the poor are, and what can be done about it.
2. To organize a workshop to develop skills on how to talk to politicians, since we are often worried that they will be able to dismiss our concerns if we are not able to clearly articulate them, and it can be intimidating to stand up to them. So, this workshop will hopefully help us be more confident and better prepared to take on this really important task!
In order to make sure these ideas materialize, PRAC members agreed to form a sub-committee and meet on Tuesday, February 18, at 6:30 PM at the BCPRC office (14th Floor-207 W Hastings St, at Cambie).
In the meantime, please make sure to check out PRAC’s website for more information about its activities, and please make sure to get in touch if you want to be notified by email of upcoming events and organizing meetings.
See you all soon!
Trish & Gil