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2022 was a busy year for us! Thank you to all of you who made it great!

We are in the season of reflection, so Youthful Cities is taking a look at what 2022 has meant for us. As a team, we’ve enjoyed getting out and about in Canadian cities more than we’ve been able to over the past two years that were so defined by the pandemic. There were highs and lows – from celebrating during launch events to deep concern when our data found that no Canadian city was affordable for young people. 2022 was indeed a busy year, and we would love to share our highlights with you.

Here are a few of our favourite things from 2022!

  1. Real Affordability Index
    Our main event this year was the launch of the Real Affordability Index in partnership with RBC Future Launch in May. We sought to find which Canadian city was doing the best regarding affordability for young people – none. 😭 Young people (aged 15 to 29 years) face an average monthly cost-to-income deficit of -$750. Dive into the report to learn more.Since the launch, we’ve been spreading the message far and wide to reach folks like you working to better this dire situation. When a city is doing well for its youth, there are positive impacts for everyone!In 2023, we are keeping this conversation going to work towards addressing this issue that unfortunately defined 2022 for so many.
  2. Launching THE GRID
    One of the highlights this year was the relaunch of our open data portal as THE GRID. While Pivot Hub served us well, we knew it was time to open a new chapter and realize the hub’s full potential. It was exciting to pick a new name and design, but the real win is that we’ve plugged five new datasets into THE GRID since our launch event.Youth-relevant data is now easier to access than ever. We’re excited to see how we can keep expanding THE GRID in 2023!Do you ever find yourself in a data platform and wondering how to get started? Genna Weber, YC’s Web Development Coordinator, put together a set of video tutorials to help you along the way.
  3. Open Up: Open Data Literacy and Activation Cohort 2
    We were thrilled to be joined by the second cohort of our Open Data Literacy and Activation program that wrapped up at the beginning of last year. It was great to see ten youth-centred organizations turn open data into action to meet their goals, reach new audiences, or plan community-tailored programs.Learn more by reading the Impact Report.
  4. Communities Building Youth Futures with Tamarack Institute
    Working with 19 communities across Canada, Youthful Cities supported Tamarack Institute on data projects to support better education and employment outcomes for young people. The CBYF national gathering in Montreal, also attended by the YC team provided opportunities to further converse and connect with communities, partners, and stakeholders. We look forward to continuing the necessary work in collaboration in the new year!You can find all the CBYF data to date here.
  5. Scrollytelling
    Gathering the data is one thing, but in order to truly activate it we need to be able to put the data into stories. That’s exactly what our Summer Team did with the Real Affordability Scrollytelling. With our Web Development Coordinator Genna Weber at the helm, the team came up with an innovative and interactive platform to turn the data we found for the Real Affordability Index into a story. Check it out here!p.s. Shout out to Canada Summer Jobs for enabling us to bring such a talented team together for the summer!
  6. Team trips
    If you have connected with us over the past year, you’ve probably seen our faces on a Zoom call. Our Youthful Cities team works remotely in locations across Canada (we’ve even had some team members work from Europe and UK this year!). With that, it is always exciting to connect in person to collaborate and create! We enjoyed our team trips to Toronto last spring and Montréal this past fall!
    The Youthful Cities team all together in Toronto March 2022.
  7. In the media!
    We are grateful to all those who helped elevate our message this year. With the launch of the Real Affordability Index, we saw a total potential reach of 85.3 million – that’s a lot of people brought into the conversation about the unfortunate state of affordability for Canadian youth. We hope our data and the stories it tells reach the right people who can affect positive change to make cities better for young people across the country. From social media posts, to radio and tv interviews, to editorials, to podcasts, to articles – we are grateful to all who helped spread the word!

And that’s a wrap from us! Thank you to everyone who partnered, connected, and joined us throughout the year. We can’t wait to see you in 2022!

Happy Holidays!

From the Youthful Cities Team
Robert, Raj, Genna, and Elise

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