Do Better... Be Better... It Starts With Me
Do Better… Be Better… It Starts with Me is a Prairie/BC Federal Council initiative that is a call to action for federal public servants to share the Acts of Better they are doing to enhance their work, themselves and local communities.
This year, perhaps more than most, we have needed to focus on the power of good deeds to help us cope with some societal challenges we have seen in the news of the day. The “Do Better…” campaign resides in a small space of the Government of Canada’s GCTools platforms of GCPedia and GCconnex and profiles the Acts of Better being shared by public servants across the country. Reading these stories provides us with the opportunity to reflect and celebrate the difference public servants are making in big ways and small; at work, personally and in local communities.
Take, for example, Corrections Service Canada’s Patricia Parker who, for 20 years has been doing “Acts of Better” at Drumheller Minimum Security Unit Greenhouses. Inmates come to her knowing nothing about gardening and by the time they leave, they have learned how to grow flowers and food, and they have grown in many ways themselves. They learn that the plants in the garden depend on them and they must take care of them in order for them to survive.
Chantal Edgar, who works in the Office of the Deputy Minister for Western Economic Diversification Canada, believes a higher power connects us to one another and, as a result, places great importance on treating people with respect. Chantal’s walk to work takes her past an area where many of Edmonton’s homeless community members gather. She makes it a point to “see” and acknowledge the individuals she passes and when appropriate and safe to do so, she takes the opportunity to surprise people with coffee, lunch, and even some money tucked under the blanket of a sleeping individual.
Three years ago, Service Canada’s Mary Lummerding began a Toastmasters group for youth in Langford, B.C. Between 10 and 20 youth aged 8 to 17 meet for two hours on Saturday mornings. The kids present prepared and impromptu speeches and learn how to evaluate each other. This club helps the quiet child to become more confident; it helps the talkative child to realize that it is not necessary to talk all the time. They develop their listening skills, too. Mary has fun interacting with young people and helping them in the way she wishes she had been taught and it helps her give back to a community from which she and her family have received support.
It is our hope that by showcasing the varied and diverse acts of “Better” conducted by public servants from coast-to-coast-to-coast, we can inspire others to share their stories while also setting the tone for the new year ahead with hope and optimism.
We encourage you to visit the GCpedia/GCconnex “Do Better…” webpages and learn about the Acts of Better public servants are sharing.
If you’re so inclined, please feel free to share your stories on social media using: #MyActOfBetterGC #actiondameliorationGC.
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