Community Hubs to Address Local Needs, Strengthen Communities
Investing in communities and supporting the people in them
Today, Calgarians celebrated the launch of six unique Community Hubs planned for the next five years in the communities of Bowness, Greater Forest Lawn, North of McKnight, Sunalta, Village Square and Vista Heights. Serving more than 200,000 residents, each Hub will reflect local needs and desires, as identified by residents, with the goal of making their community stronger.
Acting as a ‘community living room’ of sorts, Community Hubs serve as gathering places for residents to connect and socialize. They will house a variety of easily accessible resources and services, and provide opportunity for conversation and collaboration about matters important to their community. While each Hub will be unique, they may include things like financial literacy training, seniors’ activities, childcare, counselling and community kitchens.
“Community Hubs are powerful and effective ways to build community and fight poverty,” said Mayor Naheed Nenshi. “They empower citizens to shape and build the kind of community in which they want to live and thrive. All Calgarians deserve to grow up in a community that is invested in their success, where residents support one another, and where there is easy access to important supports and resources.”
A partnership between The City of Calgary, Rotary Club of Calgary, and United Way of Calgary and Area, Community Hubs are made possible through philanthropic donations and local community participation.
2016 saw investment in the first two Hub sites at Village Square Leisure Centre and 1,000 Voices at Genesis Centre (North of McKnight area). Additional Hubs will open as community planning evolves and funding becomes available.
“We know strong, vibrant, and connected communities are directly linked to individual resilience and economic growth,” said Karen Young, President & CEO, United Way of Calgary and Area. “Community Hubs support the Enough for All strategy as they empower communities to be strong, supportive, and inclusive; and provide easy access to supports, services, and resources. We’re honoured to partner on this initiative and thrilled to see support from individuals and corporations wanting to make positive community change through their investment in the long-term vitality of Calgary.”
To date, donors have contributed $3.8 million to the Community Hubs initiative. Recognized at the launch for their generous contributions were Mike and Sue Rose, Pembina Pipeline Corporation and Rotary Club of Calgary.
“As a Founding Partner, Rotary is excited to be a part of this initiative that will strengthen our city for future generations,” said Sid Mark, President, Rotary Club of Calgary. "We look forward to filling leadership roles at all levels such as hosting barbecues and community consultations, holding governance roles on advisory and steering committees, and operating programs like Stay In School and Christmas Hampers. Our involvement extends well beyond financial contribution.”
Community Hubs is the first partnership of its kind in Canada where a United Way, municipal government, and service club are taking on a city-wide neighborhood initiative.
“I have seen people from all walks of life get connected through our Hub. It is amazing how one connection leads to another. Newcomers to Canada connecting with others while trying to learn new ways of an entirely foreign country. Special needs individuals impacted in positive ways through simple interactions with others. To see these connections happen right before my eyes, is a feeling I will always cherish.”
Snanna Virk, Village Square Community Hub ambassador and local resident
“The Community Hubs project gives us a chance to directly impact Calgarians in a meaningful way. We are excited to participate in this small way to build out the Village Square Hub and are confident the community led partner approach will set positive courses for many kids, individuals and families.”
Mike and Sue Rose, Community Hubs donors
Visit calgaryunitedway.org for more information.
Building strong, supportive and inclusive communities. Because where we live matters.
Tell us what community means to you at #yycHubs
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For more information, please contact:
Senior Communications Officer
United Way of Calgary and Area
City of Calgary Media Relations
403-828-2954, Option #2