METRO-ALLIANCE FOR THE COMMON GOOD: CALGARY
CALGARY . EDMONTON ..VANCOUVER.. IAF NORTHWEST

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Summer Schedule

During the summer the rhythm of MACG shifts to focus more on relationship building, refocusing, and creating space while people go on holidays. So our usual meeting schedule is changing for the summer. Please see the schedule of meetings below:


Leadership Team - Thursday July 27 at 9:30 at Beth Tzedec Synagogue
Poverty Organizing Team - Wednesday July 26 at the Women's Centre
Senior's Team - August 3 at 7:00 at Lutheran Church of Our Saviour
Reconciliation Team - August 23 at 2:30 at the Unitarian Universalist Church.
Board - August 25 at 1:30 at Unitarian Universalist Church
AGM/Delegates Assembly - September 7 at 7:00, Location TBA

Moving from Problems to Issues

One of the essential elements of community organizing is moving from broad problems to actionable issues. Often, we think about problems like poverty, homelessness, reconciliation, supporting seniors, the environment, etc.

The challenge with these problems is that they are so broad that they are vague and overwhelming. Because everyone is responsible, no one is. The result is that people lose focus, and the response is often protests, conferences, etc. that don't result in concrete change, but do deplete our energies.

Instead, we need to cut problems into issues that are concrete, significant, winnable. We need actions that will build the alliance, boost our energy and enhance our power to impact these issues. Transforming problems into issues is an element of organizing that allows us to take action that makes a real difference.

This has been the work of our Research Action Teams. Over the last months, they have been doing the work of taking our broad problems and turning them into issues.

The Reconciliation Team has taken the broad problem of reconciliation and broken it down into three issues:
  1. Setting aside land for an indigenous gathering place in Calgary
  2. Establishing a single point of access for culturally appropriate services
  3. Continuing to explore how we can shift our colonial worldview through relationship building and education
The Seniors Team has taken the broad issues of supporting seniors and identified the needs of keeping seniors in their communities and ensuring access to services seniors need to stay in their communities. Specifically:
  1. To have a page of senior services offered both by the city and community available on the 211 telephone system so that any senior can call and access the services they need
  2. To preserve and expand non-medical home supports that enable seniors to stay in their homes
  3. To engage our members in exploring how members, seniors and retirees can support each other and strengthen their home communities.
There is still work to further narrow down these issues and to do the necessary power analysis that will allow us to develop strategies that can make these issues winnable. We can already clearly see, however, that our work will have an impact on our members and our city.

Poverty and Economic Pressures Focus

MACG has been engaging with its members and community partners to explore interest and resource availability for a third focus: to address poverty and the economic pressures effecting Calgarians. We had hoped to gather 15-20 community leaders. We were pleasantly surprised when over 35 community leaders joined us to express a solid interest in developing this initiative. A facilitator/leader's team has been created that will develop this initiative and we will call together the wider community in June.

Visit our Training Opportunities page for information about upcoming training and events.

Visit our news page to learn about the decisions made at our recent discernment assembly.



MACG BACKGROUND and PURPOSE

The Metro Alliance For the Common Good - Calgary (MACG - Calgary) brings together organizations and communities of Calgary to transform our city into a community which acts justly and respects all. MACG is directed by a team of leaders from participating institutions.

MACG was formed in association with the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF) the oldest and largest network of broad-based organizations in North America. Similar organizations exist in Vancouver and Edmonton (GEA, the Greater Edmonton Alliance). The Industrial Areas Foundation has been sponsoring these organizations throughout North America for many years, and has had a good deal of success. MACG - Calgary was originally organized mainly by religious groups and unions, with the unions, some churches, and Temple B’nai Tikvah putting up some money for start-up.

OBJECTIVES
  • Create a network involving people from diverse religious, non-profit, labour, neighbourhood and ethnic groups to foster meaningful relationships with each other and their respective communities.
  • Develop leaders who can promote healthy and effective civic life
  • Effectively address the key justice issues facing Calgary
  • Harness the voice and the power of the people of Calgary to transform our city by addressing the systems, policies, and underlying causes of poverty and injustice.
NEXT PHASE OF MACG

MACG - Calgary is now in a phase of expanding our capacity. To this end we have begun to implement a strategy consisting of these elements.

1. We are contracting with the Industrial Areas Foundation to provide support and guidance as we redevelop MACG
2. We have formed a partnership with the Greater Edmonton Alliance which will allow us to share an organizer and have the capacity to work with the provincial government on key issues
3. We have hired our first organizer.
4. We have begun the work of growing both the number and commitment of our membership.
5. We are continuing to provide regular leadership development workshops for our leadership and members. These workshops teach leaders the skills of community organizing and ways of using these skills to develop their own organizations.
6. We will continue to develop local community based action teams which can address local community issues and advocate with local MLA’s and city councilors
7. We launched a listening campaign through which we identified key issues affecting our members and our city that we can make a significant impact on.
8. We will hold a founding assembly that will publically launch MACG as an important public voice representing a diverse and significant membership.
9. We will then act on the issues identified in our listening campaign in a way that can make a significant difference.

BECOMING A MEMBER OF MACG

MACG depends on the commitment of its members in order to develop our shared capacity to make a positive difference in our city and province. This involves a commitment of people and money. Generally faith communities and non-profit members contribute 1-2% of their budget while unions contribute $3-5 per member. We also ask that your organization provide a leader who can act as a part of MACG’s leadership team. If this is more than your organization can afford, alternative arrangements can be negotiated.

PARTNERS
MACG is directed by a team of leaders from participating institutions. It is affiliated with the Industrial Areas Foundation (IAF), the oldest and largest network of broad-based organizations in North America. Along with the MACG - Calgary, the Greater Edmonton Alliance and the Metro Vancouver Alliance are all members of the Industrial Areas Foundation Canada.

ORGANIZATION BUILDING PROCESS ...... Read more


INFORMATION ABOUT OTHER ALLIANCES FOR THE COMMON GOOD......... Read More

SUPPORTING MACG

You can now donate money to support the educational work of MACG through the Industrial Areas Foundation Canada. This can be done through Canada Helps by clinking on the link below and selecting the MACG Calgary fund

https://www.canadahelps.org/dn/24229
TO BECOME INVOLVED IN MACG CONTACT:

Ryan Andersen - ryan@calgarycommongood.org or phone 403-993-7123

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