CYC coordinator Karen Steegstra and MCFD’s Dan Bibby, flanking Mayor Sharon Gaetz, after presenting city council with the 25th Anniversary Child and Youth Committee plaque. (Jennifer Feinberg/ The Progress)

Council accepts plaque for supporting Chilliwack Child and Youth Committee

The CYC reps were in council chambers to mark 25 years of advocating for Chilliwack kids

Two Child and Youth Committee representatives appeared as a delegation at Chilliwack City Hall Tuesday to recognize council for its unwavering support.

They were on a mission to give back to various local agencies, like city council, that have strongly backed them in the quarter century they have been advocating for Chilliwack kids.

Dan Bibby of Ministry of Children and Family Development, and Karen Steegstra, Child and Youth Community Coordinator, were in council chambers to provide an overview of their work and highlights over the past 25 years, and to present to council with the 25th Anniversary Child and Youth Committee plaque.

Bibby noted that over the 25 years CYC has brought all the agencies and service providers together, and “council has been a big part of it.”

There are 34 agencies that take part in the committee’s work, using a collaborative model that the CYC pioneered in Chilliwack.

The committee has been recognized regionally and provincially with awards, including becoming a finalist in the Premier’s Award for their ‘Every Door is the Right Door’ initiative.

Each year the Chilliwack Child and Youth Committee brings together community and service providers for an annual ‘Conversation on Chilliwack’s Children’ event.

“This year’s marked our 25th annual event and to celebrate we focused on caring for the caregiver,” Steegstra said. “We were pleased to have Coun. Chris Kloot present to give a greeting as well as Coun. Ken Popove to assist with presentations.

Mayor Sharon Gaetz’s support was noted, dating back to her involvement in the Ministerial Association, as well as when she was a school trustee, and then later as city councillor and mayor.

“What a magnificent legacy,” said Mayor Gaetz about the 25-year milestone, thanking the CYC for all the work they do. “Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Without your committee’s advocacy on behalf of children and youth, there are some that may have gotten lost in the mix. We humbly accept this plaque.”

Coun. Jason Lum said he had the pleasure of serving on CYC.

“The work you are doing is so fantastic,” he said.

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