Community Hubs Initiative: Where Community Happens – A partnership between Rotary, The City of Calgary, and United Way of Calgary and Area.

When we come together as community,
and have the right supports, services and opportunities,
we can thrive and contribute socially, economically, physically and mentally.

The Hubs   See the Impact   Timeline   Resources

The community we live in impacts the kind of opportunities we have in life. Research shows living in neighbourhoods with high levels of poverty can negatively impact life expectancy, physical and mental health, early childhood development, and overall quality of life. In Calgary, poverty is clustered in certain neighbourhoods of our city, where up to 1 in 3 residents live in poverty. This is significantly higher than the citywide average of 1 in 10.

In addition, 40 per cent of lower income Calgarians report being lonely—more than double the percentage of higher income Calgarians that report feeling this way. Many people simply do not know what supports and services are available, or how to access them. In fact, only 60 per cent of Calgarians feel they know their neighbours well enough to seek help.

 

 

The Community Hubs Initiative is a first-of-its-kind partnership between The City of Calgary, Rotary Clubs of Calgary, and United Way of Calgary and Area to prototype and activate seven Community Hubs in priority locations across our city.

We would like to thank all of the generous individuals who have supported the Community Hubs initiative. Special thanks to philanthropists Mike and Sue Rose for their early investment in the project. 

The following individual donors have given $100,000 or more to the initiative:
Kanovsky Family Foundation
Mike and Sue Rose
Bill and Sharon Siebens

Special thanks to our Innovator’s Circle members:
ENMAX Corporation
Pembina Pipeline Corporation
Shell Canada Limited

All Hubs have four key features:

Four Community Hubs Features

 

How is the Community Hubs Initiative helping people?

Since the initiative launched in 2017, it has engaged more than 31,000 individuals. The Hubs exist in five neighbourhoods across Calgary, each tailored to meet unique community needs. Below is a snapshot of the variety of programs, activities, and services residents can access through their local Hubs:


Bowness

Hub site: Bowness Community Association

Neighbourhoods served: Bowness, Greenwood Village, and Montgomery

  • Indoor playground
  • Basic needs funds
  • Community events

Contact:
Tamara Baldwin,
City of Calgary Community Social Worker
T: 403-476-7232


North of McKnight

Hub site: 1000 Voices at the Genesis Center

Neighbourhoods served: Taradale, Saddleridge, Martindale, Castleridge, Falconridge, Coral Springs, Savannah, Cityscape, Skyview Ranch, Redstone, and Cornerstone

  • Newcomer programs
  • Language programs
  • Free tax clinics
  • Free and accessible space for community groups

Contact:
Kiima Bailey,
City of Calgary Community Social Worker
T: 403-476-7152


Sunalta

Hub site: Sunalta Community Association

Neighbourhood served: Sunalta

  • Toy lending library
  • Community activities and programs
  • Community gardens
  • Food security initiatives and opportunities

Contact:
Silvia Ross,
City of Calgary Community Social Worker
T: 403-221-3831


Village Square

Hub site: Village Square Leisure Centre

Neighbourhoods served: Whitehorn, Temple, Rundle, and Pineridge

  • Food security initiatives and opportunities
  • Free tax clinics and matched savings programs
  • Access to low income transit passes
  • Library access

Contact:
Jenna Pothier,
City of Calgary Community Social Worker
T: 403-476-7128


Greater Forest Lawn

After extensive community engagement, it was determined that the initiative would invest in three Hub sites in Greater Forest Lawn in order to meet the needs of residents and enhance the coordination of services for the area.

The three integrated Hub sites are: Bob Bahan Aquatic and Fitness Centre, The Alex Community Food Centre, and Fuse33 Makerspace

Neighbourhoods served: Albert Park, Dover, Radisson Heights, Southview, Forest Lawn, Erin Woods, Forest Heights, and Penbrooke

  • Food and well-being programs
  • Recreation
  • Accessible space for community groups
  • Skill building and credentialing

Contact:
Christine Lee,
City of Calgary Community Social Worker
T: 403-801-7644

 

Impact Stories

North of McKnight

A few of Calgary’s North of McKnight Domestic Violence Prevention Collaborative smile at one of their monthly meetings.

When family violence emerged as a clear priority in one Calgary neighbourhood, residents banded together to take action.

Learn more

Jay

After a degenerative condition limited Jay’s opportunities to work, the Fuse33 Makerspace gave him a renewed sense of purpose.

After a degenerative condition limited Jay’s opportunities to work, the Fuse33 Makerspace gave him a renewed sense of purpose.

Learn more

 

Join the conversation on Twitter:

 

Timeline of the Community Hubs Initiative

2008:

  • United Way and The City of Calgary (The City) begin working together on a joint neighbourhood building strategy

2012:

  • Genesis Centre opens in Calgary’s North of McKnight communities
  • United Way invests in 1000 Voices, a Community Hub within the Centre; this investment serves as a prototype for the Community Hubs Initiative

2015:

  • Enough for All—Calgary’s community-driven poverty reduction strategy—is released, which recommends Community Hubs as a key approach
  • Philanthropists Mike and Sue Rose provide an initial investment to seed the Community Hubs Initiative through a five-year commitment

2016:

  • Project Manager hired
  • Project design, site selection, and community engagement begins
  • Initial investment into Village Square Hub site
  • The Rotary Club of Calgary’s general membership voted overwhelmingly to join the initiative through a multi-year commitment of $2 million

2017:

  • Memorandum of understanding signed between founding partners: The City, Rotary Clubs of Calgary, and United Way, to prototype and activate Community Hubs across priority locations in Calgary between 2017–2022
  • Public launch of the Community Hubs Initiative
  • Innovators Circle members ENMAX Corporation, Pembina Pipeline Corporation and Shell Canada Limited join Community Hubs for three-year terms

2018:

  • Project implementation underway
  • Evaluation framework and marketing and communications plan activated
  • Community Hubs sites in Greater Forest Lawn selected

 

Learn more

Community Hubs 2017 Annual Report

2017 Impact Report Highlights | 2016 Impact Report

Guest blog on Local Laundry: “What matters is that you belong—we all do.”

Do you want to start a Community Hub? See Vibrant Communities Calgary’s Community Hubs by Design Toolkit

 

Contact

For more information on the Community Hubs Initiative or to explore partnership opportunities, please contact:

Andrea Wall
Project Manager,
Community Hubs Initiative,
United Way of Calgary and Area

Email: