Put simply, collaboration is when two or more individuals or organizations work together for a common goal. But for those who have experienced community collaboration and its positive outcomes, collaboration is significantly more meaningful. It is the positive, synergistic energy that raises a community to a new level; it is when organizations openly and willingly share resources for a common goal; it is when leaders come to a table with a common vision; and most importantly, it is the positive change that impacts generations to come as a result of collective impact.
Peel is no stranger to collaboration. Since 2004, Success By 6 Peel has brought organizations together to improve outcomes and services for children aged 0-6 , creating a strong foundation for PCYI’s larger mandate of serving children and youth 0-24 years. Building a strong foundation for children so that they can thrive from infancy to adulthood is our mission!
Research shows that education is perhaps the most important indicator of success for children and youth. Moreover, when children know they have money saved for post-secondary education they are more likely to produce positive outcomes in high school and attend post-secondary education.
The collective effort PCYI’s Enrolled By Six: Peel Post-Secondary Strategy is to leverage our members’ and partners’ resources to build capacity and increase post-secondary access for children and youth of Peel by accessing the Canada Learning Bond(CLB) – Registered Education Savings Plan. The CLB is free money provided by the government of Canada for children born after January 1, 2004 into families who receive the National Child Supplement or who earn $42,707 net per year. Upon registering, children receive $500 and an additional $100 annually until they reach 15 years of age, totalling nearly $2,000 before interest. No parental contribution is required, and the funds are retroactive!
Since launching the Enrolled By Six program earlier this year, we have seen an extraordinary response from our members and partners. Together they have rallied around this strategy to ensure that every eligible child in Peel can access the CLB. The Enrolled By Six strategy is the essence of community partnership. Without our partners, PCYI would not be able to create the level of awareness and opportunity to help parents access this FREE benefit. Here are just some of the ways our partners contribute to our regional strategy:
- CDRCP – Child Development Resource Connection Peel hosts our information line (905-890-9432) where parents can call to speak to an information referral specialist about the CLB. Access to more than 200 interpreters is available;
- Trillium Health Centre includes CLB information in their pre-natal class curriculum;
- Peel District School Board and Dufferin-Peel Catholic Peel District School Board includes CLB information in kindergarten registration packages, adds web banners on school websites, and sends a letter home to more than 70,000 parents informing them about the CLB;
- City of Mississauga provides free space for community enrolment events;
- 14,000+ flyers are distributed to parents by front-line service staff working with families;
- Region of Peel promotes Enrolled By Six on its regional website as well as the Peel Immigration website for newcomers;
- More than 80 organizations host training sessions/presentations for more than 4,000 staff and clients about the Enrolled By Six strategy and CLB-RESP
Our community enrolment events act as a “one-stop shop” where parents can register for their child’s Social Insurance Number (SIN) and CLB –RESP with Service Canada and bank representatives in approximately 30 minutes. We’ve partnered with Caledon Community Services, Dixie Bloor Neighbourhood Services, Peel-Dufferin Catholic Family Services and Family Education Centre to host three community enrolment events to date and have successfully enrolled 75 children into the CLB — that’s more than $150,000 for children’s post-secondary education!
Our next community enrollment event will be hosted by the Malton Community Building Project — a community that is no stranger to collaboration! Join us on Tuesday, October 16th from 12:00 noon until 7:00 p.m. at the Malton Community Centre. Click here for more event details.