Anglican Diocese of Ottawa
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More than money.....

Lunchbox recipe book Poverty is about more than simply living in low income, particularly for children whose current and future well-being and capabilities can be formed by a life lacking monetary and/or non-monetary resources. Poverty is also about what is available in the child's home, community, and school which influence and support not only the child's physical development, but also their academic, social, emotional, and psychological brain development. All our attitudes and beliefs about life are based on everyday experiences and environmental influences.

The Challenge to Respond

"I believe that this matter deserves our very best attention."
The Rt. Rev. Dr. John Chapman
Bishop of Ottawa

Bishop John ChapmanBishop John Chapman first raised the issue of regional child poverty as a specific priority for the Diocese during his annual charge to Diocesan Synod in October 2009. Inspired by research produced on the subject by a dedicated group of retired clergy and laity, Bishop Chapman used a portion of his annual charge to argue that "child poverty in our community has reached critical proportions," and it "must be addressed by our Diocese [as] the nurture and care for our children is clearly demanded of us by Jesus." The Bishop concluded his remarks on the subject by calling on the Diocesan Community Ministries Development Committee (CMDC) to take up the challenge of alleviating child poverty in the Diocese. His hope was that the Committee would be in a position to put forward a formal recommendation for a comprehensive Diocesan response to local child poverty.

In January of 2011, a group convened to imagine a CMDC response to the Bishop's charge. Included were original members of a group that petitioned Bishop John, members of CMDC, and other interested people from around the Diocese. From that consultation, CMDC established a task force in the spring of 2011 to formally respond to the Bishop's call to action.

Since then the Diocese has not been silent in response to Bishop John's charge. The Diocesan Capital Campaign, GIFT: Growing in Faith Together, allocated $300,000 of its anticipated proceeds to the development of The Bishop's Child Poverty Initiative, which became the Diocese's overarching response to child poverty in our territory. While only a small portion of the campaign's $12 million goal, the funds give the Diocese the flexibility to fund a number of projects aimed at improving the wellbeing of poor children living in our region over the next few years.

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The Anglican Diocese of Ottawa
The Bishop's Child Poverty Initiative
71 Bronson Avenue,
Ottawa ON K1R 6G6
Tel: 613-232-7124
Fax: 613-232-7088

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