Throughout the fall of 2022, United Way of Calgary and Area has been shining a light on the inflation crisis affecting so many across our community. We’ve told you how skyrocketing costs have led to people turning to food banks for the first time in their lives, or how families are having to choose between heating their home or eating, and how some of our agency partners are looking at new ways to go beyond band-aid solutions.

Much of our work on poverty is shaped by the Enough for All strategy, a collaboration between United Way, The City of Calgary, Momentum, and stewarded by Vibrant Communities Calgary. Poverty Talks! is a lived experience group that provides input and advice to the strategy and its partners. We sat down with several members of Poverty Talks! for an insightful and emotional conversation about the ripple effects of poverty on mental health, social inclusion, and healthy relationships.

As we continue to affect systems change across our communities, groups like Poverty Talks! are vital in bringing the voices of lived experience to decision-makers. As part of the Community Impact Framework, United Way invests in social sector initiatives that are collaborative and innovative and that address multiple social issues, many of which have been amplified by the pandemic and continue to have a significant impact on people in Calgary and area.

The framework takes a collaborative, integrated, and holistic approach based on co-designing innovative and transformative solutions and demonstrates United Way’s commitment to building diversity, equity, and inclusion into everything we do.