TracyRay on what Poverty Talks! Means to Her

Today's post comes from TracyRay, a member of Poverty Talks!

I’ll get the negative out of the way first!
 Negative:
The WORK... is often emotionally draining (for me) and frustrating - and repetitive and slow. The nature of the work is what drains and frustrates me. It’s about feelings and spirituality and ethics. When these things are way out of whack, the imbalances cause a lot of pain...

It seems like common sense to treat people with dignity and respect, particularly if they are from a vulnerable population, however, a great number of our vulnerable Calgarians are at the mercy of people who are dehumanizing them and treating them without dignity. 


It’s hard to sort out who dehumanizes because many workers in the low-income helper fields are also being dehumanized and other workers should just know better; thus, knowing these differences, one could know who to take to task for being an oppressor and who to support for being oppressed in the workplace... It’s all rather complicated when you get down to it. 


On repetition: 

Once you “enlighten” one person or agency or a small group within an agency... your turn around and see that the next place is not “in the know” about how to provide dignified service delivery to homeless or low-income clients, etc. Frustration abounds... over and over and over and over and over and over... it’s  s-l-o-w work.

Positive:
The passion some of my Poverty Talks! peers have for this work is really cool. When I wear down, some of their energy keeps me going. When I lose hope, someone else has some to spare. Once in a while, someone will just say ‘I’ve got this - go home.” and I do. Then I return later - to see what other people have accomplished and it’s always a size-able chunk of stuff and awesome, to boot!
Sometimes our accomplishments are little - like with each other, learning better communication skills, learning to hear each other and support each other better. 


Sometimes our accomplishments are huge - like when assisting/collaborating with Fair Fairs and Disability Action Hall on more affordable transit fares and less complicated subsidized fare processes situation that WORKED out well in early 2016.


One of the biggest accomplishments for Poverty Talks! was the big Spoken Word event we just pulled off on October 17, 2016 at John Dutton. This event was a lot of work and also a lot of fun!
So here, I hope I’ve provided a balanced view on what Poverty Talks! means to me. This is just like the tip of an iceberg, actually, as this work and this group has a ton of complexities. This is just one blog post - to give you an idea of my most basic thoughts and feelings about Poverty Talks! and my participation with this group of anti-poverty warriors!



TracyRay has been involved with Poverty Talks! since 2010 and been a member of our Steering Committee since 2013. 


TracyRay on what Poverty Talks! Means to Her TracyRay on what Poverty Talks! Means to Her Reviewed by Poverty Talks! on 12:14 AM Rating: 5

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