Campaign Successes: Making Change Happen

Campaign Successes: Making Change Happen

Campaign Successes: Making Change Happen

The power of people against poverty.


We know people power works. Speaking up, making noise, and taking citizens’ voices directly to decision makers is how Oxfam has achieved real lasting change. Since 1963, Oxfam campaigners have been taking to the streets across Canada. See what we’ve accomplished together.

Make Trade Fair

We put an end to Canada’s tied aid.

Through our Make Trade Fair campaign we rallied Canadian support to change our aid and trade policies. In collaboration with Foodgrains Bank, Oxfam rallied supporters and grain farmers from across the country met with their MPs to highlight the negative impacts of tied food aid on the world’s poorest communities. In response to our calls, in 2008, Canada committed to untying food aid immediately, and to untie all aid by the end of 2012.

Make Poverty History

We got commitments to bring us closer to making poverty history.

The biggest ever anti-poverty movement came together under the banner of Make Poverty History calling for urgent action for more and better aid, debt cancellation and trade justice. Together with a coalition of organization, Oxfam engaged over 300,000 Canadians to wear white bands and send emails to the Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance about poverty. The campaign ensured that global poverty was placed higher on the national and global agenda than ever before. As a result, G8 leaders cancelled the debts of 18 poor countries, doubled aid to Africa, and promised huge financial commitments in new aid money. Great steps forward were made, but the fight against poverty continues.

Behind the Brands

We pushed Pepsi to change how they do business.

When enough of us speak out, companies listen. In 2014, PepsiCo proved this. After pushing Pepsi's rival Coca-Cola to prevent land grabs in their supply chain as a part of our Behind the Brands campaign, Oxfam campaigners continued to pressure Pepsi into following their example. Now, suppliers who want their ingredients to be used in Pepsi products – from Pepsi and Doritos to Tropicana and Walkers – must ensure their land is acquired responsibly. Canadians spoke up to get a World Bank freeze on investments involving land acquisitions at the same time, and one supporter even made a music video to the Canadian Finance Minister.

Behind the Brands

We fought gender inequality in cocoa farming.

Also as part of our Behind the Brands campaign, in 2013, more than 100,000 dedicated campaigners around the world urged Mars, Mondelez and Nestlé to investigate the treatment of women cocoa farmers in their supply chains. By April, all three companies had made the important commitments necessary to start tackling gender inequality and respecting women's rights.

Up For Debate

We held the second ever women’s rights focused leaders debate in Canadian federal election history.

Oxfam Canada was part of the 175 organizations who together undertook the Up for Debate campaign and called for measureable commitments from all parties on advancing women’s rights in the lead up to the 2015 federal election. This campaign created a Canada-wide conversation on gender justice and equality, and got 4 major party leaders to dedicate an exclusive 20 minute interview to discussing their women’s rights commitments pre-election. The first and only women’s rights focused debate by Canadian federal leaders was in 1986! With help from key media outlets, the premier of these interviews along with political analysis was broadcast live from Toronto’s Isabel Bader theatre just weeks before the election.

Arms Trade

We secured a global arms trade treaty.

For ten years, Oxfam supporters and the control arms coalition have been calling for a treaty to control the illegal sale of weapons. Together we signed petitions, sent emails, met MPs, and collected 1 million photo portraits to make our point. In April 2013, the world agreed to a historic Arms Trade Treaty – and the determination of people like you made it possible. Further campaigning in Canada meant that our country ratified the treaty, making it legally binding to our government. We have to keep pushing to ensure it is upheld and that loopholes aren’t used to get arms where they shouldn’t be.

You can help us continue to campaign for change at every level, and fight for equality.

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