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Ward 9 - Gian-Carlo Carra

Season's Greetings from Your Team Ward 9

Season's Greetings

Season’s Greetings, Ward 9 Neighbours,

This holiday season began for me with a one-two punch.

Early in the morning at the end of November, my son, my Chief of Staff’s child, and I assembled at the Calgary Food Bank for a food hamper stuffing competition, kicking off the 35th Annual Mayor and Council’s Food Drive. It was a spirited morning with Councillors and their teams competing to see who could pack the most hampers, and while the mood was fun, and the competition brought out the press to help spread awareness, the underlying message is sobering. Too many of our neighbours are struggling to make ends meet in this post-Covid period of unprecedented economic inequality, high inflation, high interest rates, and an increasingly constricted housing supply as the population of our wonderfully livable city booms. The Calgary Food Bank is facing a record 30% year-over-year increase in demand, with a third of the clients they serve being children. And while it’s imperative that we pursue larger fixes to larger societal issues, our neighbours need our help right now.

The second punch came the following evening when I was able to take my food hamper stuffing team to the 37th consecutive opening night of Theatre Calgary’s presentation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol. Written in an earlier age of exaggerated inequality, the timelessness of the story hit me and the kids hard. My thoughts were also drawn to Dickens’ other classic, about it being the best of times and the worst of times. This is playing out at a global scale and the beacon of our country and city’s prosperity, safety, and opportunity is driving the booming immigration and migration we’re experiencing. But it’s also playing out locally where the inequality is unacceptably widening the gap between haves and have-nots and is threatening to undermine the viability of this remarkable place we’re fortunate to call home.

As we wrestle with the larger issues, the Calgary Food Bank needs our support. If you are able, please donate food or funds to help care for our neighbours in need this season. Monetary donations can be given online at - for every dollar donated, the Calgary Food Bank is able to distribute $3.50 worth of food. If you have non-perishable food donations to share, they can be dropped off at most grocery stores in Calgary, or can be delivered directly to the Food Bank Warehouse (5000 11 Street SE.)

From your Team Ward 9, we wish you and your family all the best of the Holiday Season.

- Gian-Carlo Carra



As we've done in the past, in lieu of mailing traditional holiday cards, the Ward 9 office has instead opted to donate to several notable local charities. For 2023, our focus has been to support some of the organizations doing meaningful work in arts and culture in Ward 9 and throughout Calgary.

Fort Calgary |
A National Historic Site, Fort Calgary is often celebrated as the birthplace of Calgary, but it also represents more somber, difficult stories behind the creation of settler-colonial cities. Committed to exploring how these stories evolve and change as we continue to learn about this place, Fort Calgary is looking at our past honestly and gaining new understandings of our history from many perspectives.

GFL 55+ Society |
Since 1973, the Greater Forest Lawn 55+ Society has provided a welcoming place for information, programs, and services that enhance the quality of life for mature adults and their families in Greater Forest Lawn. Through a variety of events and programming, as well as volunteer-run initiatives like the Bike Shed and the Men’s Shed, GFL seniors are able to be supported by and give back to their community in positive and meaningful ways.

Ogden 50+ Activity Centre |
A community where every person who is 50+ has what they need to thrive, the Ogden 50+ Activity Centre offers a place for mature adults to come together over delicious meals, engaging social events, and community connection. They also provide referrals and in-home support services such as housekeeping and snow removal, allowing members who could use a helping hand the ability to age in place.  

Urban Society of Aboriginal Youth (USAY) |
USAY provides essential programming and services to enrich the lives of urban Indigenous youth between the ages of 12 and 29. By nurturing self-empowerment, healthy collaboration, and effective communication, USAY supports transitions, traditional languages, and arts-based programs to nurture healthy future generations. Construction is currently underway on their new headquarters in Forest Lawn, expected to open in 2024.

If you’re interested in learning more about the organizations, groups, and City policy working together to make Ward 9 (and Calgary) a world-class leader in arts and culture, check out our latest map: The Eventful City Guide to Ward 9.


Categories: Newsletter