Canada Learning Bond Initiative in Chatham-Kent

Chatham-Kent is working hard to make the Canada Learning Bond a household name. Our vision is to be “... a community that values learning: where everyone has the opportunity for postsecondary education”, and we have set a target of achieving 70% enrollment by 2020. 

In order to get there, we need everyone’s help. We have engaged our financial institutions and the Chatham-Kent Community Leaders Cabinet, as well as have initiated a CLB Community Committee comprised of members from organizations that work with children, providing an opportunity for collaboration on promotions.  

The committee recently held an RESP sign-up clinic hosted by Best Start, Employment and Social Services and RBC. We were able to connect with many families and even had an on-site visit from RBC’s Leo the Lion! We continue to use social media, using the hashtags: #canadalearningbond and #learnck. Our local Ontario Works social assistance office has built promotions into their Intake Process and they talk to every family with qualifying children about the benefits of the program and is very simple to build into the process. We continue to promote the use of the online Smart Saver RESP application as an easy and accessible way to sign up. 

We are gearing up for Education Savings Week, November 20 to 26, 2016. We will have a free Movie Night kick off at our local Capitol Theatre and plan a targeted effort in promotions through events and social media campaigns within our community. We will end the year with our homegrown CLB video playing as a trailer at Galaxy Cineplex over the Christmas holidays. We look forward to a time when every child has an RESP for their future.

Education is essential to health of our community, and the CLB is an important piece to ensuring all children know that Post-Secondary Education is not just a possibility but an expectation. There is such great work being done across Canada for the Canada Learning Bond and we are excited to be a part of it.

 

Written by:

Mary Alice Searles, Program Manager Municipality of Chatham-Kent and               
Lydia Sanderson, Community Promotions Worker Municipality of Chatham-Kent