In October 2016, in partnership with End Poverty Edmonton, JHC hosted a celebration of Global Day of Dignity at Edmonton City Hall. The celebration featured City of Edmonton Artist in Residence, Dawn Marie Marchand, in a live banner art installation, a special presentation by End Poverty Edmonton and an open mic enabling people to share their stories of dignity. During this event, 50 community members came together. We also had a collaboration on a community magazine (‘zine) that aims to challenge the narratives centered around dignity.
Local artist/emcee Tzadeka, prolific Edmonton poet Dwennimmen, and Young Medicine were guest performers. A local youth, Vicki Moses, and the Self Advocacy Federation group joined Edmonton City Councillor Scott McKeen in a dialogue reflecting on the intersectionality of dignity and poverty. Kate Gunn, the Project Director of End Poverty Edmonton, shared her reflections in the dialogue.
JHC also released a Yeg Dignity Campaign School Resource toolkit and launched a community-wide creative art submissions campaign as part of its partnership with End Poverty Edmonton. The educational toolkit provides a guide to Edmonton teachers, volunteers and youth program leaders to integrate activities in the classroom while contributing to the YEG Dignity Campaign. It challenges students to think about what dignity means at a local level and in their own lives.
The educational toolkit aims to challenge perceptions of poverty and look forward to how Edmontonians can rally together to protect and support all in the community to belong and participate. A copy of the resource toolkit can be found on Scribd.