A non-partisan coalition that supports BC children, First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition has a lot to be proud of when it comes to stepping up for this province’s most vulnerable. In addition to overseeing the annual BC Child Poverty Report Card and Living Wage for Families campaign efforts, the coalition ensures a regular media presence in order to speak up for those who need a voice most. Yet perhaps at no time has this dedication been more apparent than in their never-give- up approach to putting an end to government clawbacks as they pertained to single parents who receive child support payments.
Today, We are Roommates
In 2014, the offices of Vancity Community Foundation became home to the charitable work associated with First Call: BC Child and Youth Advocacy Coalition. We couldn’t be more proud to have so much good under one roof.
But What's a Clawback?
The BC government had a policy in place which meant when a single parent would receive child support payments, the government would deduct or “clawback” that amount from their income assistance benefits. As of September 2015, however, with
changes to the provincial budget, First Call was among the many celebrators who bid adieu to this archaic set-up. Over 5,400 children will benefit from this policy change.
Our Glass is Half Full
Unfortunately, the government still employs a clawback when funds received by an individual on income assistance are to pursue an education. At Vancity Community Foundation, we are working to address these challenges with our community partners and donors by supporting important changes to public policy. We share in the optimism of those affiliated with the Jane Taylor Legacy Fund, in that each woman receiving support will move closer to achieving well-paid employment.
The Jane Tyler Legacy Fund
Jane Tyler's Legacy Fund will mean scholarships for single women on social assistance. Like the name implies, the Jane Tyler Legacy Fund was created in memory of the great Jane Tyler. Born in Ireland and given up by birth parents too poor to care for her, Jane was raised by a couple who had 14 children of their own. All told, Jane was no stranger to poverty. She arrived in Canada at age 17 and found employment in service to the wealthy of Vancouver. By 38, Jane found herself divorced with two daughters. Having no recent work experience she did not know how she might earn a living. Without funds to pursue an education, friends offered to pay for courses that gave her a Diploma in Early Childhood Education. This act of generosity altered the trajectory of Jane’s life. She worked as a preschool teacher until her retirement at the age of 70.
Recognizing the role that the mutually-symbiotic act of giving and receiving played in her mother’s life, Jane’s daughter, Gale, established the Jane Tyler Legacy Fund to provide bursaries to single mothers on social assistance, who want to pursue post secondary education. And, furthermore, Gale works hard to have the government eliminate the policies that deny people on social assistance the right to enrol in school without suffering the clawback of any bursary beyond the money received on social assistance.