Concept

May Birchard

Summary
May Birchard (died July 30, 1968) was a municipal politician and poverty activist in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Born in Toronto, she married F.J. Birchard, an agricultural scientist who was an expert on grain. During the First World War the family moved to Winnipeg, Manitoba. A self described left-wing Liberal, May Birchard was a strong believer in the Canadian Social Gospel movement that originated in Winnipeg during the first part of the 20th century. In 1933, during the Great Depression, Birchard founded The Good Neighbours' Club to aid unemployed men. A few years later a branch was opened in Toronto. The organization continues to operate with a drop-in centre on Jarvis Street. After the death of her husband in 1940, Birchard moved back to Toronto and became active in local politics. She first served as a school board trustee in 1942. At the height of the war, she pushed for daycare for the children of women helping with the war effort for free meals for impoverished children. She w
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