City officials of Vancouver, Canada were quick to realise early that involving children and young people in shaping its future outlook was the right – and smart – thing to do, and so they are now already well on the way to outlining a vision which will help ensure the city works for everyone, not least children and families.
The Vancouver Plan will feature a single, city-wide plan to guide future growth in line with key community priorities. The Vancouver Plan will also aim to keep the qualities that make Vancouver special while responding to the challenges facing the city and its residents.
Vancouver Plan reaches out directly to those young people who, the decision-makers realise, are the future of this great city. “Too often, those decisions are made without hearing from people like you, the city’s youth. Join us in Planning Vancouver Together and help define the kind of city we want in the future,” it adds. This child-friendly section of the plan makes it clear to young people just how influential their ideas can be when looking at the infrastructure of a major city like Vancouver, and all the societal effects that go with it. It says that questions like where to build new housing, the best locations for new parks and playgrounds, and how the city can best adapt in the future to environmental challenges like rising sea levels and pollution, all require answers that will impact on the city evolves for our children, their children, and future generations.
The city therefore is looking for ideas for a post-COVID-19 Vancouver, and posing the question to young people – what are your biggest issues for the future? Ideas can be submitted and shared in any form, be it drawings, collages, photographs, videos, and the like. Social media is an obvious vehicle for young people, so even podcasts and TikTok videos are also being encouraged.