Dr. Gary Bowie
Chair, Alberta Secretariat for
Action on Homelessness and
University of Lethbridge Professor
Without poverty, there would
be equality and fairness for all
Albertans. Everyone would have
housing and a greater feeling of
safety in knowing they had a place
to go. I believe that makes you a
citizen who’s able to contribute to
the community much more. You
feel a part of what’s going on, not
marginalized. You’re able to be
involved and give back. That’s a
key component of a well-developed
Being out of poverty would help
people overcome ugly situations
such as abuse and addictions, and
devastating influences could be held
to a minimum. Children and adults
in a poverty-free Alberta could
better develop their talents. Right
now Albertans living in poverty
just try to survive. There’d be more
opportunities for stimulation and
growth of the brain. In studies I’ve
seen over the years, the earlier we can
stimulate young people, the healthier
and stronger their brain development.
If all children were able to participate
in early childhood activities, play
and be stimulated, we’d see a big
difference in how they turn out.
That’s all a part of being involved
in balanced living; if they can be
healthy physically, it promotes a
healthy mental and spiritual being.
As we get all people involved
in our community, it could be that
much stronger and healthier. When
you’re struggling with poverty, you’re
putting all your time and effort there.
You can’t contribute elsewhere.
Family bonds could also be
strengthened. Parents would have
more time and energy to help their
children grow stronger mentally,
physically and spiritually, and help
them deal with different issues.
We need to strive to bring about
more positive experiences for
children and families, and celebrate
We need to put forward values on
helping each other out—being kind
to each other and working together.
I also believe that we need to talk
about engendering hope. Time needs
to be spent on that.
There would be equality
and fairness for all