Simcoe County Circles Guide to The Living Wage

Living Wage

The County of Simcoe recently released their 2018 Living Wage Recalculation for Simcoe County report and it has been a hot topic of discussion for many local groups and individuals. How is the Living Wage defined and calculated? Is it realistic? How were the parameters decided? Let’s take a look at this hot topic in our latest blog.   The living wage isn’t the same as the minimum wage employers are required to pay their employees. The living wage is based upon the actual cost of living in the community. As an example, while a fast food service employee will make...

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Is Basic Income the Answer?

Is Basic Income the Answer?

At Simcoe County Circles, we believe that no one should live in poverty. If given the right tools and support, economic stability can be achieved by just about anyone. Is Basic Income the answer to reducing or eliminating poverty in our communities? Let’s explore this concept in our latest blog by examining the recent Ontario Basic Income Pilot project. What is Basic Income? Basic Income is defined as “is a payment to eligible couples or individuals that ensures a minimum income level, regardless of employment status”. Basic income differs from social assistance because it is given to anyone who meets...

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Stop Struggling. Start Getting Ahead.

Getting Ahead

“Before Getting Ahead I couldn't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I started Getting Ahead and found out I wasn't the only one. I found the resources I needed to start making my future the way I want it to be. I am now doing courses I didn't know were available.” ~Getting Ahead Graduate Housing. Jobs. Food. Transportation. Without these basic necessities, life is a struggle. With so many families living paycheque to paycheque, it can be very hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. That’s where Simcoe County Circles comes in, to...

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How Does Food Insecurity Affect Canadians?

Food Insecurity

Food insecurity is a very real issue impacting the physical, mental and social health of over 4 million Canadians. Although food insecurity is strongly linked to poverty in our country, it can affect almost anyone at any time. Let’s take a deeper at this problem in our latest blog. What is Food Insecurity?   Food security is defined as “when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.” When income is too low or unsteady, there is not...

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What is The Cliff Effect?

What is The Cliff Effect?

Have you ever felt like each step towards economic stability takes you two steps backwards? That as quickly as you start to earn a steady paycheque, your benefits and supports begin to disappear? Do you ever feel that it would be easier just to remain in poverty? Those feelings are part of The Cliff Effect, the phenomenon that occurs when social assistance benefits are taken away quicker than you can earn to replace them. Let’s explore The Cliff Effect and how Simcoe County Circles can help you navigate these important economic and lifestyle changes.   Let’s take Linda, for example....

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What is a Circles Ally?

Simcoe County Circles is currently looking for Allies in the Midland/Penetanguishene area to join us and help make a difference in our community. What is a Circles Ally? A Circles Ally is a volunteer that would like to be a mentor to an individual or family living in poverty and assist them with their Plan of Change. We are looking for people to build intentional friendships through mutual respect who would like to support individuals with their future plans. Allies will help increase their Social Capital by sharing contacts, information and experiences. What is Involved? Simcoe County Circles meet every...

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Change Your Mindset With Bridges Out of Poverty

Many of us view the world from a middle-class perspective. That’s how we live and work and raise our families but, when it comes time to help others, we may need to adopt a different kind of thinking. We may believe that we understand the struggles and lifestyles of those living in poverty but, in reality, we need to work together to increase awareness and inspire compassion. That’s where Bridges Out of Poverty comes in. Bring People Together Bridges Out of Poverty, a workshop presented by Simcoe County Circles, brings people together from all walks of life, regardless of economic...

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What an amazing year it has been!

November 2nd, 2017 at our first Circle night, we knew, within minutes, that lives were going to change. Yes we had a lot to learn and we happily dove in, knowing that every minute invested in this initiative was going to significantly impact the community. Throughout our months together, the Leaders and Allies built formidable relationships and have grown to care about each other like a family. In the first few meetings the group took the time to get comfortable with each other and by February we easily settled into our groove. We have each grown and been supported. Our very own Circles Coach, Michelle...

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“At Circles I feel like I belong”

Many of us who have struggled to fit in, find our place in the world and who work to achieve a true sense of success know the power of truly feeling like we belong. In Dr. Brene Brown’s research on belonging she asked a large group of eighth graders to define belonging…here is what they said: Belonging is being somewhere where you want to be, and they want you. Fitting in is being somewhere where you want to be, but they don’t care one way or the other. Belonging is being accepted for you. Fitting in is being accepted for...

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What’s Great about Getting Ahead?

The goal of Getting Ahead: To help individuals in poverty to build their resources for a more prosperous life for themselves, their families, and their communities. By creating an actionable plan for change graduates of the Getting Ahead program build the capacity to move towards being financially self-sufficient. The Getting Ahead curriculum: Involves work done in a safe learning environment with the support of an experienced facilitator and co-facilitator with lived experience of poverty. Enables you, the participant, (also known as “investigators”) to examine your own experience of poverty as well as explore issues in the community that impact poverty (banking, housing,...

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