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Cities Reducing Poverty:
When Mayors Lead

A Vibrant Communities National Gathering
Edmonton, Alberta | April 5-7, 2016

edmonton_prs_icon.pngAcross Canada, mayors and their councils are making poverty reduction a priority and are leading the way in terms of deepening community understanding of poverty as a human rights issue that impact everyone in our communities.

Cities Reducing Poverty: When Mayors Lead is a milestone event, bringing mayors from communities of all sizes together to share their respective visions, plans and on the ground work to reduce poverty. They will be joined by provincial and territorial representatives as well as sector leaders and practitioners from across the nation.

City mayors such as Don Iveson in Edmonton and John Tory in Toronto have launched major strategies, while mayors Walter Sendzik in St. Catharines and Matt Brown in London have announced new advisory panels on poverty reduction. According to the National Post, Medicine Hat just became the first city in Canada to end homelessness. These are just a few examples of recent successes led by mayors.


* We use the word cities mainly to differentiate local poverty reduction efforts from provincial and federal initiatives and strategies. Please note that the event will feature communities of all sizes and we have intentionally invited smaller and rural municipalities to attend in addition to big cities.

 Join us April 5-7 in Edmonton:

Advance your own understanding of what is happening across the country, learn together and grow your toolbox for change, and leverage our collective efforts to build a movement to reduce poverty across Canada. Highlights of the benefits of attending include:

  • Increasing your knowledge and understanding about the issues of urban poverty;
  • Present and be inspired by solutions that are currently seeing success in big cities and small communities;
  • Learn about how Aboriginal leaders are building on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), and are creating positive impacts on the lives of Aboriginal families and their children;
  • Through Tamarack's Learning Labs, co-generate ideas and recommendations for strategic alignment that can be shared with provincial and federal governments to help cities tackle poverty;
  • Be a part of the launch of a new book on poverty reduction success stories, innovative ideas, and vital resources that can help your work. Authors are Brock Carlton, Paul Born, and Mark Holmgren; and
  • Participate in an afternoon of experiential tours designed around Edmonton's poverty reduction initiatives and innovations. This activity will highlight the city's strategy and the people who have helped form it. The tour will culminate at City Hall for a reception and an inspirational talk by Mayor Don Iveson on End Poverty Edmonton.
  • Take a look at our full three-day agenda for more on who you will meet and what you will experience. Please note this schedule is subject to change.

A Special Invitation to Mayors

Brock Carlton of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities and Edmonton's Mayor Don Iveson have invited Mayors across Canada to join us for this momentous occasion and to show their leadership for poverty reduction. You can read the full-sized invitation by clicking on the letter below.  


Brock Carlton, FCM


English version


Version Français


Mayor Don Iveson,
City of Edmonton


English-only available

Feedback from the 2015 Poverty Reduction Summit:

"The mayors! Wow! Refreshing to see/hear."

"It was an inspiring and motivating two and a half days. I so enjoyed the depth of speakers and sessions."

"I'm leaving with a deeper understanding of the work of poverty reduction and how I can enter into our initiative at home with more confidence."

"People kept moving along, connecting, sharing, exploring... Great vibe."

"Great conference! I am looking foward to the next one."

Cities Leading in Poverty Reduction

At the National Poverty Reduction Summit in 2015, Mayor Don Iveson shared his thoughts on the role of cities in poverty reduction in his keynote address.










This is a unique time in the history of Canada. Across the country every provincial and territorial government has or is considering a poverty reduction strategy. At the community level, for the first time in history, most cities (communities) are enacting poverty reduction strategies focused on reducing the number of Canadians experiencing poverty. On top of that, we have a new and energized federal government. 

We know the economic and social costs that poverty has on people and on the cities in which they live. This is a time of real hope as cities, provinces and the federal government are joining together to support one another with the goal of significantly reducing poverty in Canada.

Cities Attending:

Edmonton, AB
Calgary, AB
Camrose, AB
Canmore, AB
Cold Lake, AB
Fort McMurray, AB
Grande Prairie, AB
Leduc, AB
Medicine Hat, AB
Red Deer & Central Alberta, AB
St. Albert, AB
Strathcona County, AB
Wetaskiwin, AB
Kamloops, BC
Kelowna, BC
New Westminster, BC
Surrey, BC
Victoria, BC
Fort Saskatchewan, SK
Regina, SK
Saskatoon, SK
Winnipeg, MB
Brantford, ON
Cambridge and North Dumfries, ON
Chatham-Kent, ON
Kingston, ON
London, ON
Hamilton, ON
Niagara, ON
Peel, ON
Toronto, ON
St. Catharines, ON
St. Thomas and Elgin County, ON
Waterloo, ON
Windsor and Essex County, ON
Gatineau, QB
Montreal, QB
Charlotte County, NB
Saint John, NB
Cape Breton, NS
Whitehorse, YK
...stay tuned as our list of participating cities continues to grow!


Vibrant Communities Canada - Cities Reducing Poverty

vclogoSince 2002, The Tamarack Institute for Community Engagement has led Vibrant Communities Canada which has been building a network of cities across the country focused on place-based poverty reduction. Over the past 13 years, leaders from business, government, the voluntary sector, and citizens alike have effectively reduced poverty for more than 202,931 Canadians. These local community efforts have been bolstered by the leadership of provincial and territorial governments as they adopt or renew their own poverty reduction strategies. 

Vibrant Communities Canada is the lead sponsor of this event and is working with its partners to invite you to join us in Edmonton for Cities Reducing Poverty: When Mayors Lead on April 5-7, 2016.



Join us!

This year's gathering will be held:

April 5-7, 2016
Edmonton, AB

Chateau Lacombe Hotel Edmonton 

10111 Bellamy Hill Rd NW
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 1N7



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