Community invited to take action

The first phase of the Progress Plan to increase economic wellbeing of women on the Coast is now complete and the community is invited to take action on Tuesday, May 28.

On that day at the Gibsons and Area Comm-unity Centre the executive summary of the Progress Plan titled "Community PlanIn Progress" will be shared and action groups will be formed to tackle concerns highlighted during phase one.

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Four main action groups will be created to take on issues like obtaining a living wage for women on the Coast, creating affordable and accessible child care, addressing adult care needs, which are often filled by women, and improving transportation options on the Coast.

A fifth action group, focused on increasing belonging in the community will be headed by Progress Plan members themselves who will create an online information hub for women in the community as well as a volunteer support network.

"One of the big things the women told us was needed was one, support for women around income and this notion of belonging as well as information, how to find out what's happening, to get plugged into the community," said project consultant Betty Baxter. "So we're doing two things and then we're trying to influence through action groups how other agencies can do other things."

The Progress Plan aims to make sustained changes in the local community however, their funding runs out in 2015, so they need volunteers to get involved who are willing to carry the torch.

"We really want to emphasize that it takes a whole community response to make this kind of change," said project manager Michelle Morton. "In the scope of our project we can't do all of these things and its not practical for us to propose that we even could do all of these things in the next two years, but we need to work with others in the community, with governments, with local businesses, with non-profit organizations, volunteers to make as many of these things as possible move forward and become a reality in our community."

Morton and Baxter are inviting those interested in sitting on one of the action groups to come to the May 28th release of the Community PlanIn Progress to learn more and get involved.

The child-friendly event runs from 4 to 6 p.m. at the Gibsons and Area Community Centre where finger foods and refreshments will be served.

If you would like to attend you are asked to preregister online (so that enough food can be ordered) at

The Progress Plan is a three-year community planning initiative of the Community Resource Centre managed in partnership with the Sunshine Coast Community Services Society and funded through the Status of Women Canada.

For more information or to get involved you can email or call 604-885-4088.

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