The City of Vernon is exploring what it takes to be a child and youth friendly city.
After facing some challenges, the City of Vernon has received $10,000 in funding from BC Healthy Communities, for Child Friendly City project — which aims to evaluate how Vernon is doing supporting children and youth through working with community partners and examining topics relating to housing, transportation, health, parks and recreation.
After the assessment is complete, gaps and improvements will be identified and recommended to Vernon Council and/or partner organizations. There will be community consultation throughout the process, including engagement designed and delivered by and for children and youth. UBCO students and the Institute of Community Engaged Research are also assisting and involved with the project.
In 2014, Vernon hosted the Cities Fit for Children Summit, bringing delegates from all over the province to hear internationally renowned speakers discuss how cities can support children, youth and families. Council’s Strategic Plan includes goals and objectives surrounding children, youth and families, and supportive policies exist in various City Plans; however, further work is required to strengthen these initiatives.
A collaborative working group, made up of representatives from the City of Vernon, Interior Health, North Okanagan Early Years Council, Success by 6 and the United Way, meets regularly to explore ways in which Vernon can support children, youth and families.
These endeavours aim to build a strong healthy future and support community economic development.