Newmarket ON, L3Y 7B2
Monday - Friday
9am - 4:30pm
Elements of a Sustainable Livelihood
The goal of Women’s Centre of York Region is to move women towards a sustainable livelihood. With that goal in mind, we provide a range of low or no cost programs to help women become sustainable. A livelihood is more than a job: it needs to incorporate social inclusion and community participation; empowerment and independence; and economic and social security.
Women come to WCYR at different stages; we have programs to help women at all points along this continuum.
Sustainability is defined in a broad manner and for our purposes implies:
Livelihood assets are the basic building blocks that support women in pursuing self-sufficiency. Women need to make investments in a range of assets in order to become self-sufficient and achieve their objectives. While all assets are complex and interconnected, they have been grouped into 5 areas so women’s strengths, challenges and barriers can be better analyzed and understood.
We are currently working with women to learn more about sustainability, goal setting, and the barriers women face in moving towards a sustainable livelihood. We asked the women in our study to define a sustainable livelihood in their own words. They included things like: “health and happiness for my children”, “support from my partner”, “skills to return to work”, and “owning a home”; basic, fundamental hopes that we all have.
As we have worked with these women, we have learned a lot and have been very moved by their courage and strength. For some of the women, this was the first time they had set and achieved goals; one woman commented that this helped her get through a very difficult life issue recently. We wanted to share these findings with the community – our clients, volunteers, and supporters.
We have created a project called the Elements of a Sustainable Livelihood. From our clients’ definitions of a Sustainable Livelihood, we chose nine key themes. Our community partner, Danielle Koren, took an original photograph to represent each word. She put those images and words together in a presentation that, we believe, clearly conveys the concept of sustainability. This is a resource we will use for clients, to help them understand how WCYR can move them toward a sustainable livelihood and for our partners, funders, and volunteers to understand WCYR’s role in the community. The video Elements of a Sustainable Livelihood is available here.
We now have these photos displayed at the Centre, so everyone who comes in, can immediately see the impact of the work we do. We will be providing updates on the Sustainable Livelihood project over the year, through our website and newsletter.
To see the gallery of images, click here. We have received a number of requests for copies of these photographs; if you would like to purchase any of the images, all proceeds will benefit WCYR. Please click here for the price list.