The Town of Sutton is recognized as a Child Friendly City (Municipalité Amie des enfants – MAE)
– PRESS RELEASE –
On November 20, 2023, on World Children’s Day, the Town of Sutton officially joined the network of Child Friendly Cities. This prestigious international recognition was awarded by Espace MUNI in collaboration with UNICEF Canada, following an application and evaluation process.
The Town of Sutton joins the network of some one hundred municipalities, boroughs and MRCs across Quebec that are committed to putting children at the heart of their concerns. In doing so, it also joins the worldwide Child Friendly Cities network, made up of over 3,500 cities in 40 countries.
According to Doreen Assaad, President of Espace MUNI, “Being a Child Friendly City is a commitment for the future. Recognition encourages communities to further develop, expand and initiate new actions that benefit children. It means that the Town of Sutton has chosen to take into account the voices, needs and rights of children to improve their well-being and development. But it’s also, above all, a philosophy that symbolizes the willingness of municipalities to offer child-friendly living environments and services that meet their needs.”
With this recognition, the Town of Sutton is committed, within the framework of its functions, to respect children’s rights, to include children in all its actions and to facilitate their participation as citizens.
Link to Espace Muni’s press release: Espace Muni and Unicef Canada announce new Child-Friendly Municipality cohort – November 20, 2023 (in French only)
Tangible commitments benefiting children
For our municipality, joining the network involves tangible actions and commitments dedicated to the well-being of our children. This is fully in line with the 2023-2027 action plan of the Family and Seniors Policy recently adopted by the Town of Sutton, which includes numerous actions aimed at the well-being and development of Sutton’s children.
For example, in 2023, thanks to the collaboration with key partners, the Town of Sutton has
- added new activities for kids and teens to its recreational program;
- offered a number of free family events;
- installed new bike racks in parks;
- gave teenagers a voice through consultations and their involvement in the Town’s first participatory budget.
In addition to the actions already implemented this year, by gaining this recognition, the municipality has committed to :
- Renovate Gagné Park to create an inclusive, accessible park that encourages free play through natural elements;
- Make the access to Goyette-Hill Park safer by renovating the northern portion of Western Street, adding traffic calming measures and encouraging active transportation;
- Create a youth zone with street furniture and a basketball court in Goyette-Hill Park.
Early Childhood Week from November 20 to 26
As part of the same initiative, and to mark the Early Childhood Week, a beautiful intergenerational activity brought together FADOQ members and children from the Jardin d’enfants de Sutton that same day. The toddlers joined the seniors for their usual osteoporosis prevention exercise session. This joyful and unifying activity was a great success with children and seniors alike.
Two flags hoisted on the Sutton flagpole
In the presence of the children and seniors, symbolizing intergenerational ties, acting mayor Marie-José Auclair, accompanied by councillor Lynda Graham and councillor Marc-André Blain, solemnly hoisted not one, but two flags on the Town Hall flagpole this morning!
The Town of Sutton is thus adorned with the official Child Friendly City flag, as well as that of the Early Childhood Week, thus joining the many towns across Quebec mobilized for the respect of children’s rights and their well-being.
Marie-Josée Auclair concluded this beautiful event: “The town of Sutton is distinguished by its very special soul, shaped by the people who live here. And its children are the ones who will perpetuate it. The Town and its council members reaffirm their commitment to children’s well-being and overall development. They will make sure that their needs and voices are taken into account in their decisions.”