Partnership Programs and Projects
BCAPI’s 2011-2012 Report Card provides a snapshot of the many community programs and initiatives where the local business community is helping to achieve Saint John’s poverty reduction goals.
First Steps Housing Project Inc (First Steps) was developed in Saint John because of the high rate of teen pregnancy and the lack of support for homeless young women and their babies. These mothers and their children are in jeopardy of long term poverty, illness and abuse. First Steps provides a safe and supportive environment where young mothers can continue their education, further their personal development and gain the skills required to thrive as individuals and as parents. Visit the First Steps Housing Project website
PALS was developed to help local schools enrich learning opportunities for children. While all schools can benefit from PALS, BCAPI focuses on seven schools located in Saint John’s low-income neighbourhoods. Local businesses and community organizations partner with neighbourhood schools, and provide support in the form of volunteers and financial assistance. The PALS model was founded in 2000 by Mr. J. K. Irving, Chairman of J.D. Irving, Limited in partnership with School District 8, and has received national and international recognition for its excellence. Today, more than 100 organizations and 1,000 volunteers contribute to PALS in Saint John. View a copy of their brochure.
P.R.O. Kids is a non-profit program operating out of the Leisure Services Department of the City of Saint John that enables children and teens, whose families don’t have the financial means, to participate in an arts, cultural, recreational or sport activity of their choice. Visit the P.R.O. Kids website.
Under the leadership of the Saint John Early Childhood Development Coalition, BCAPI has been working with local service providers to strengthen early learning and childcare resources for young children and their parents. In 2008, a business case was made for Saint John’s first Early Learning Centre – a comprehensive program that serves a neighbourhood. In 2010, the first ELC opened its doors at St. John the Baptist-King Edward School thanks to many partnerships provided by business, government and community organizations. Its success will help lay the groundwork for the growth of quality early childhood programs for families throughout Saint John and New Brunswick. View the brochure from The Early Learning Center website.
TRC is a safe, energetic place for teens to access free recreation; self-development programs; health and wellness services; and assistance with school studies and employment. Drawing from best practices and ‘youth engagement’ principles, the TRC helps teens from all walks of life become leaders and active participants in their community. TRC also provides services for homeless youth, and outreach services and programs for schools and neighbourhoods. Visit The Resource Center for Youth website.
In 2004, BCAPI helped to establish Vibrant Communities Saint John (VCSJ), a multi-sector leadership roundtable that drives Saint John’s poverty reduction strategy. VCSJ is part of a pan-Canadian network of cities that are striving to reduce poverty and a provincial network of communities that are helping to implement the New Brunswick Poverty Reduction Plan. BCAPI is the convener for VCSJ and appoints the chair of the Leadership Roundtable. Through research and policy components, neighbourhood engagement and pro-active collaboration, VCSJ fosters the development, implementation and tracking of the strategy to support individuals on their journey out of poverty. VCSJ`s Leadership Roundtable brings together members from the five priority neighbourhoods, three levels of government, the business community, and non-profit organizations to find the most innovative and effective ways to reduce poverty in Saint John.