Rep Day 2016-17

June 5th, 2017 by CIVIX

CIVIX coordinated nearly 170 visits between Members of Parliament and Canadian students during the 2016-2017 school year as part of the Rep Day program!

Rep Day is a civic education initiative that connects students at the elementary and secondary levels with their local MP for a dialogue on government, the electoral process and issues that affect them. The program aims to help students develop a better understanding and sense of trust in the people and institutions within our democracy.

Between September 2016 and June 2017, 167 visits were organized with 94 MPs across all ten provinces and one territory. Together, participating MPs engaged with more than 8,000 students.

Since the conception of the Rep Day program in 2012, more than 500 visits have been coordinated across Canada, and more than half of all MPs have participated. In 2016 alone, 284 visits were coordinated in every province and territory and engaged more than 13,000 students.

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MP Harold Albrecht, St. Dominic Savio Catholic School

The feedback from teachers and MPs was extremely positive:

“Wow, what an awesome morning! MP Tracey Ramsey was fantastic with the students. She was a true professional. We all really enjoy her visit” (Mr. R. Milks, Anderdon Public School)

“The visit with MP Eglinski was wonderful! My students were very grateful for the opportunity to meet with him and ask questions about his role and experience. Thank you for all the work you did to pass the information along and make sure everything worked out. I really appreciate this! Thanks again! All the best!” (Ms. A. Maduik, St. Anthony School, Alberta)

“We enjoy these classroom visits and are always amazed at the engagement level and thoughtful questions from our young citizens. We look forward to visit again next school year.” (Mr. K. Kolanko, MP Rodger Cuzner)

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MP Gagan Sikand, Our Lady of Good Voyage Catholic School

Interested schools for the 2017-2018 school year are invited to contact CIVIX to take part and receive free curriculum resources to help guide the visit.

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Student Vote Nova Scotia 2017: The Results

May 30th, 2017 by Dan Allan

More than 18,000 elementary and high school students participated in the Student Vote program for the 2017 Nova Scotia provincial election.

After learning about the electoral process, researching the parties and platforms, and debating the future of Nova Scotia, students cast ballots for the official candidates running in their local electoral district.

As of 3:00 p.m. this afternoon, 163 schools had reported their election results, representing 50 of 51 electoral districts in the province. In total, 18,929 ballots were cast by student participants; 18,186 valid votes and 743 rejected ballots.

Student Vote NS 2017 -- Results Graphic

Students elected Jamie Baillie and the PC Party to form a minority government with 25 seats and 36.4 per cent of the vote. Baillie won in his electoral district of Cumberland South with 35.9 per cent of the vote.

Gary Burrill and the NDP took 13 seats and will form the official opposition, receiving 25.9 per cent of the popular vote. Burrill won in his electoral district of Halifax Chebucto with 38.7 per cent of the vote.

Stephen McNeil and the Liberals won 11 seats and received 26.2 per cent of the vote. McNeil won in his electoral district of Annapolis with 41.1 per cent of the vote.

The Green Party received 1 seat and 8.7 per cent of the vote. Leader Thomas Trappenberg was defeated in his electoral district of Clayton Park West, but candidate Anthony Edmonds won in Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank with 33.8 per cent of the vote.

The Atlantica Party elected no candidates while receiving 2.5 per cent of the vote. Leader Jonathan Dean was defeated in his electoral district of Clayton Park West.

“We would like to thank all of the teachers for their enthusiasm and leadership, and for dedicating the time and effort to this civic education exercise at such a busy time of the year,” says Lindsay Mazzucco, Chief Operating Officer of CIVIX. “This is the second Student Vote project organized in Nova Scotia this school year and more than 30,000 ballots were cast by future voters in both the municipal and provincial elections.”

VIEW COMPLETE RESULTS HERE: http://studentvote.ca/results/ns2017

 

RESULTS HIGHLIGHTS:

  • There were many close races across Nova Scotia, with 15 races determined by 15 votes or less.
  • The electoral district of Antigonish had the greatest number of participants with 1,140 valid votes. Hants East was second with 1,040, followed by Hammonds Plains-Lucasville with 852.
  • Kings South and Victoria-The Lakes each had eight schools report results – more than any other electoral district.

 

BACKGROUND:
Student Vote is the flagship program of CIVIX, Canada’s leading civic education charity. CIVIX provides authentic learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens and connect with their democratic institutions. CIVIX programming focuses on the themes of elections, government budgets and elected representatives.

The Student Vote project for the 2017 Nova Scotia provincial election was conducted with support from Elections Nova Scotia, the Government of Nova Scotia, the Nova Scotia School Boards Association and the Government of Canada

Posted in English, Student Vote | Leave Comments »

Student Vote Day in Nova Scotia

May 28th, 2017 by Dan Allan

May 29th is Student Vote Day in Nova Scotia! 15,000 elementary and high school students across the province are expected to cast ballots for the official candidates running in the 2017 provincial election.

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Student Vote Nova Scotia 2017 is a hands-on learning program that enables teachers to bring democracy alive in the classroom by empowering students to experience the voting process firsthand for the purpose of practicing the habits of active and engaged citizenship. Participating schools are provided with free learning materials and election supplies to help students engage in the campaign and organize a parallel vote.

Students learn about government and democracy by researching the issues, party platforms and candidates through classroom activities, and family discussions and campaign events. In the culminating activity, students take on the roles of election officials and coordinate the election process for their peers. On Student Vote Day, students cast ballots for the candidates running in their school’s electoral district.

A total of 186 schools have registered to participate in Student Vote Nova Scotia 2017, representing 50 of 51 electoral districts. You can view all participating schools on our interactive map.

In addition to election materials, a wide variety of online tools have been made available to participating schools. The Student Vote website includes an online resource library with lesson plans, handouts and activity sheets, as well as other educational tools like videos and PowerPoints. Written profiles were prepared for all five registered political parties.

Nova Scotia students were also invited to submit questions to the party leaders. CIVIX selected five questions and shared them with the political parties. Video responses were received from the five parties. The Q&A focused on key election issues and all students and party videos can be viewed here.

The Student Vote Nova Scotia 2017 results are tabulated by electoral district and will be released at the close of polls on Monday, May 29th (8:00 pm Atlantic time).

The Student Vote project for the 2017 Nova Scotia provincial election is being conducted with support from Elections Nova Scotia, the Nova Scotia School Boards Association, the Government of Nova Scotia and the Government of Canada.

Student Vote is the flagship program of CIVIX, Canada’s leading civic education charity. CIVIX provides authentic learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens and connect with their democratic institutions. CIVIX programming focuses on the themes of elections, government budgets and elected representatives.

Since 2003, CIVIX has coordinated 36 Student Vote projects at various levels of elections. In the 2015 federal election, 922,000 students cast ballots from 6,662 schools representing all 338 ridings. Students elected a Liberal majority government.

Posted in English, Student Vote | Leave Comments »

Student Vote BC 2017: The Results

May 9th, 2017 by Dan Allan

More than 170,000 elementary and high school students participated in the Student Vote program for the 2017 British Columbia provincial election.

After learning about the electoral process, researching the parties and platforms, and debating the future of British Columbia, students cast ballots for the official candidates running in their local electoral district.

As of 4:15 p.m. this afternoon, 1,092 schools had reported their election results, representing all 87 electoral districts in the province. In total, 170,238 ballots were cast by student participants; 163,923 valid votes and 6,315 rejected votes.

Students elected John Horgan and the BC NDP to form government with 60 out of 87 seats and 39.0 per cent of the vote. Horgan won in his electoral district of Langford—Juan de Fuca with 55.7 per cent of the vote.

Andrew Weaver and the BC Greens took 14 seats and will form the official opposition, receiving 28.5 per cent of the popular vote. Weaver won in his electoral district of Oak Bay—Gordon Head with 48.9 per cent of the vote.

Christy Clark and the BC Liberals won 12 seats and received 25.4 per cent of the vote. Clark was defeated in her district of Kelowna West by NDP candidate Shelley Cook; Clark received 32.1 per cent of votes cast, compared to Cook’s 35.8 per cent.

Students also elected independent candidate Nicholas Wong in Delta South. Wong defeated Liberal candidate Ian Paton by 10 votes.

This is the fourth provincial-level Student Vote project conducted in British Columbia. In the 2013 provincial election, 101,627 students participated from 766 schools.

VIEW COMPLETE RESULTS HERE: http://studentvote.ca/results/bc2017

RESULTS HIGHLIGHTS:

  • There were many close races across B.C., with eight races determined by 15 votes or less.
  • The electoral district of Surrey—Guildford had the greatest number of participants with 3,963 valid votes. Vancouver—Quilchena was second with 3,855, followed by West Vancouver—Capilano with 3,686.
  • Oak Bay—Gordon Head and Langley each had 20 schools report results – more than any other electoral district.

 

BACKGROUND:
Student Vote is the flagship program of CIVIX, Canada’s leading civic education charity. CIVIX provides authentic learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens and connect with their democratic institutions. CIVIX programming focuses on the themes of elections, government budgets and elected representatives.

The Student Vote project for the 2017 British Columbia provincial election was conducted in partnership with Elections BC and with support from the Vancouver Foundation, the BC Teachers’ Federation and the Government of Canada.

Posted in English, Student Vote | Leave Comments »

Student Vote Day in British Columbia

May 8th, 2017 by Dan Allan

May 8th is Student Vote Day in British Columbia! More than 180,000 elementary and high school students across the province will cast ballots for the official candidates running in the 2017 provincial election.

Student Vote BC 2017 is a hands-on learning program that enables teachers to bring democracy alive in the classroom by empowering students to experience the voting process firsthand for the purpose of practicing the habits of active and engaged citizenship. Participating schools are supplied with free learning materials and election supplies to help students engage in the campaign and organize a parallel vote.

Students learn about government and democracy by researching the issues, party platforms and candidates through classroom activities, and family discussions and campaign events. In the culminating activity, students take on the roles of election workers and coordinate the election process for their peers. On Student Vote Day, students cast ballots for the candidates running in their school’s electoral district.

A total of 1,220 schools have registered to participate in Student Vote BC 2017, representing all 87 electoral districts, making this the largest Student Vote program held in the province to date. You can view all participating schools on our interactive map.

In addition to election materials, a wide variety of online tools have been made available to participating schools. The Student Vote website includes an online resource library with lesson plans, handouts and activity sheets, as well as other educational tools like videos and PowerPoints. Written profiles were prepared for all registered political parties.

British Columbia students were also invited to submit questions to the party leaders. CIVIX selected five questions and shared them with the political parties. Video responses were received from twelve parties. The Q&A focused on key election issues and all students and party videos can be viewed here.

The Student Vote BC 2017 results are tabulated by electoral district and will be released at the close of polls on Tuesday, May 9th (8:00 pm).

The Student Vote project for the 2017 British Columbia provincial election is conducted in partnership with Elections BC and with support from the BC Teachers’ Federation, the Vancouver Foundation and the Government of Canada.

Student Vote is the flagship program of CIVIX, Canada’s leading civic education charity. CIVIX provides authentic learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens and connect with their democratic institutions. CIVIX programming focuses on the themes of elections, government budgets and elected representatives.

Since 2003, CIVIX has coordinated 35 Student Vote projects at various levels of elections. In the 2015 federal election, 922,000 students cast ballots from 6,662 schools representing all 338 ridings. Students elected a Liberal majority government.

Posted in English, Student Vote | Leave Comments »

“Vote. It’s as simple as that” — Student Vote at Thomas Haney Secondary School

May 5th, 2017 by CIVIX

Marlowe Evans is a senior student at Thomas Haney Secondary School in Maple Ridge, B.C. Marlowe organized an all-candidates’ forum at her school as part of Student Vote BC 2017.

Vote. It’s as simple as that. Democracy is the foundation upon which our country was built and voting is what keeps us true to this principle. I am seventeen and can’t vote in legal elections yet, but I’m getting close.

I first voted in the fifth grade. Even then, everyone in my class felt empowered to be able to vote. Political parties know that the results of Student Vote are important. Young people become voters, and when we vote “for real,” we will already have a firm grasp of the process. The fact of the matter is, when I’m eighteen, I’ll already have student voted in three elections. It’s nearly the real thing.

Though my generation may have a reputation for not paying attention, for being apathetic, we get charged about our politics. Not a day of my high school career has passed without getting political. We are keen observers of what is swirling around us in the global, national, and provincial political arenas. Our discussions are intense and we have strong opinions. Today’s political actions shape the world we will inherit. High school students know what’s happening, and we discuss politics, often– between classes, at lunch, and on break.

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Student Vote provides an authentic voting experience for youth across Canada. Without being encouraged to become involved in the democratic process, our enthusiasm for politics may wane. Barely half of all eligible voters in the province bothered to vote in the 2013 provincial election. Nonetheless, Student Vote has encouraged me to become involved, not only with organizing a vote for my high school, but also organizing a political forum.

I hosted an All-Candidates Question Period at Thomas Haney Secondary at the end of April, allowing students to ask questions about issues that were relevant to them. The questions they came up with didn’t surprise me at all.

Sure, they asked about the housing crisis and drugs – important, but predictable. Little did I know they were only getting warmed up. Students went on, asking, “What is your party going to do for First Nations youth, and to preserve their culture?”Where does your party stand on women’s and LGBTQ+ rights?” While every candidate had an answer, it was clear that these were questions that made them think. The meeting was concrete evidence: youth are well aware of the issues and want to be involved.

So yes, my generation may have a reputation for not paying attention, for being apathetic, but we are charged. Every day reminds me that one day I will be a voter. That one day, everything we simulate with Student Vote will be happening for real. The passion that I experience through debate and discussion won’t only be taking place in classrooms and hallways, but on the world stage.

I encourage students and teachers in schools across Canada to participate in Student Vote. Next week will decide the future of B.C. for the next four years. Though I may not be legal to vote, I like to think that I can still make a difference. Student Vote enables me to express my opinion about what I believe is best for my province, and ultimately, my country.

Marlowe also wrote about the all-candidates’ forum she organized for the Maple Ridge News.

Student Vote BC 2017 culminates next week with more than 180,000 elementary and secondary students casting ballots in all 87 provincial electoral districts. Results will be released at the close of polls on May 9.

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Rep Day 2017

April 5th, 2017 by CIVIX

CIVIX is coordinating visits between Members of Parliament and Canadian students as part of the Rep Day program!

Rep Day is a civic education initiative that connects students at the elementary and secondary levels with their local MP for a dialogue on government, the electoral process and issues that affect them. The program aims to help students develop a better understanding and sense of trust in the people and institutions within our democracy.

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Since the 2017 program was launched in January, more than 70 visits have been organized and 40 of them have already taken place. Over 50 MPs from across nine provinces and one territory are participating this winter and spring and together are engaging with more than 1,000 students.

Since the creation of the Rep Day program in 2012, close to 500 visits have been coordinated across Canada, and more than half of all MPs have participated. In 2016 alone, 284 visits were coordinated in every province and territory and engaged 13,000 students.

 

The feedback from teachers and MPs has been extremely positive:

“The MP was impressed with the variety of questions and issues raised by the children and as always enjoyed engaging with them. We look forward to continue working with CIVIX to serve our communities.” (Ms. Hilla Master, Constituency Manager for Mr. Arnold Chan, MP for Scarborough-Agincourt)

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“The visit with MP Eglinski was wonderful! My students were very grateful for the opportunity to meet with him and ask questions about his role and experience. Thank you for all the work you did to pass the information along and make sure everything worked out. I really appreciate this! Thanks again! All the best!” (Ms. Andrea Maduik, St. Anthony School, Alberta)

The Rep Day program will run through the remainder of the school year with visits coinciding with Parliamentary break weeks. The remaining weeks are from April 17th to 21st, April 24th to 28th and May 23rd to 26th.

Interested schools are invited to contact CIVIX to take part and receive free curriculum resources to help guide the visit.

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Democracy Bootcamp Alberta

March 23rd, 2017 by CIVIX

A group of 35 educators from across Alberta will gather in Edmonton on March 23 and 24 for Democracy Bootcamp Alberta 2017.

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Democracy Bootcamp is a professional development conference for elementary and secondary teachers to improve their democratic engagement, strengthen their capacity and commitment to civic education and enhance their delivery of the Student Vote program.

This is our third professional development conference in the province to date. Previous city-wide events took place in September 2015 in Calgary and Edmonton.

The schedule for the two-day conference is filled with engaging and thoughtful speakers, presentations and group discussion. On opening night, teachers will hear from a panel on ‘the state of our democracy today’ featuring Paula Simons (Edmonton Journal) and Tom Flanagan (University of Calgary), moderated by Nicole Weisberg (CTV Edmonton).

Friday’s agenda provides an opportunity to consult with teachers on ways to improve the Student Vote program in the future and enhance participation. Our goal is to build a plan for the next two years to achieve 75 per cent school participation in the next provincial election (up from 64 per cent in 2015).

In the afternoon, a panel of political insiders and journalists will discuss recent and upcoming provincial political developments in Alberta. The session is moderated by Graham Thomson (Edmonton Journal) and includes Danielle Smith (News Talk 770) and Dave Cournoyer (daveberta.ca).

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Democracy Bootcamp Alberta is made possible with the generous support of Elections Alberta.

Democracy Bootcamp has previously been proven to enhance the reach and quality of the Student Vote program, and we hope that it will contribute to our best Student Vote program in upcoming elections.

Based on analysis of Student Vote participation statistics from the 2015 federal election, it was found that Democracy Bootcamp resulted in committed and enthusiastic teachers who were more likely to register for Student Vote, complete the program entirely (submit results) and engage 50 per cent more students than non-attendees.

Furthermore, an independent evaluation commissioned by Elections Canada also found that the Democracy Bootcamps had a relatively consistent and positive impact on student voting intentions, and a significant impact on political knowledge among elementary students, as well as political discussion among elementary and secondary students. Overall, Bootcamp attendees spent more time teaching about the election, specifically tracking media coverage, engaging with local candidates, analyzing political ads and encouraging students to talk about the election at home.

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2017 Student Budget Consultation Results

March 20th, 2017 by Dan Allan

High school students to Finance Minister Morneau: Reduce debt and increase spending on education and the environment

Despite the federal government’s plan to run deficits, two-thirds (66 per cent) of Canadian high school students believe that debt reduction should be a key priority. Students also want to see more investments in environmental protection and post-secondary education.

Student Budget Consultation

For the fourth time, high school students from across Canada participated in the Student Budget Consultation, a national initiative aimed at engaging youth in the federal government pre-budget consultation process. The project was coordinated by CIVIX, with the support of the Government of Canada, Interac and the Canadian Association of Former Parliamentarians.

More than 7,000 high school students took part in the 2017 Student Budget Consultation from more than 400 schools throughout the country, representing every province and territory.

Other findings include:

  • Youth unemployment a concern – 68 per cent of students believe that there is a youth unemployment problem in Canada; making student debt more manageable (31 per cent) and improving access to quality jobs (27 per cent) are seen as the top remedies.
  • Students confident in their own prospects – 87 per cent of students are confident in their individual ability to find and maintain a job they are interested in, despite believing that social mobility and raising a family will be more difficult for them than it was for their parents.
  • Make post-secondary education more affordable – Students see increases to the affordability and accessibility of post-secondary education as the government’s most important means of helping youth and Canadian families (44 per cent).
  • Environmental protection is a key priority – 61 per cent of students believe that protecting the environment is a critical national priority and that funding should be increased.
  • Increase spending for education, health and innovation – Other top spending priorities include education (58 per cent), health care (47 per cent) and innovation (45 per cent); arts and culture was the lowest-ranked priority (32 per cent of students favoured a decrease in funding).
  • Investments in affordable housing – 36 per cent of students noted affordable housing as the most important investment priority for their local area.
  • Income inequality a growing concern – 61 per cent of students believe that income inequality is a problem in Canada today and a majority support raising taxes on wealthy Canadians (63 per cent) and corporations (53 per cent).

To view an infographic of the results highlights, click here.

To view the full results report, click here.

Student Budget Consultation

About the Student Budget Consultation

The Student Budget Consultation provides youth with an opportunity to learn about the government’s revenues and expenditures, discuss important political issues and suggested policies, and offer their insights on the priorities of the federal budget. The opinions of students are collected through a survey and the results are shared with the Department of Finance.

The 2017 survey was conducted in partnership with Vox Pop Labs between November 2016 and March 2017.

 

About the Organization

CIVIX national registered charity dedicated to building the habits of active and engaged citizenship among young Canadians. CIVIX provides experiential learning opportunities to help young Canadians practice their rights and responsibilities as citizens, and connect with their democratic institutions.

Student Vote, the flagship program of CIVIX, is a parallel election for students under the voting age coinciding with official elections. In the 2015 federal election, 922,000 elementary and secondary students cast a Student Vote ballot from approximately half of all schools in Canada.

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Democracy Bootcamp B.C. 2017

February 23rd, 2017 by CIVIX

To gear up for the May provincial election, 170 educators from across British Columbia will gather in Vancouver on February 23 and 24 for Democracy Bootcamp BC 2017.

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Democracy Bootcamp is a professional development conference for elementary and secondary teachers to improve their democratic engagement, strengthen their capacity and commitment to civic education and enhance their delivery of the Student Vote program.

This is our third and largest professional development conference in the province to date. Previous events took place in February 2015 and February 2016.

The schedule for the two-day conference is filled with engaging and thoughtful speakers and presentations. On opening night, teachers will hear from B.C.’s Chief Electoral Officer Keith Archer, as well as a panel on ‘the state of our democracy’ featuring John Ibbitson (Globe and Mail), Kathleen Monk (Earnscliffe) and David Moscrop (UBC).

Friday’s agenda includes an exploration of voting research and the impact of Student Vote, as well as a preview of the Student Vote resource materials for the coming election. Educators will also have the opportunity to hear from and speak with their colleagues about best practices, and will receive suggestions on how to integrate a variety of campaign tools.

An experienced panel of political strategists (Don Guy, Jaime Watt and Raj Sihota) will share their insights on what happens ‘behind the scenes’ during a political campaign. In the afternoon, a panel featuring representatives from provincial political parties will discuss major campaign issues, and educators will also have the opportunity to learn and share some tips for organizing their own candidates’ debate. Both panels will be moderated by Justine Hunter (Globe and Mail).

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The 2017 event is made possible with the generous support of Elections BC, Elections Canada, Vancity and the Vancouver Foundation.

Democracy Bootcamp has previously been proven to enhance the reach and quality of the Student Vote program, and we hope that it will contribute to our best Student Vote program in British Columbia this spring.

Based on analysis of Student Vote participation statistics from the 2015 federal election, it was found that Democracy Bootcamp resulted in committed and enthusiastic teachers who were more likely to register for Student Vote, complete the program entirely (submit results) and engage 50 per cent more students than non-attendees.

Furthermore, an independent evaluation commissioned by Elections Canada also found that the Democracy Bootcamps had a relatively consistent and positive impact on student voting intentions, and a significant impact on political knowledge among elementary students, as well as political discussion among elementary and secondary students. Overall, Bootcamp attendees spent more time teaching about the election, specifically tracking media coverage, engaging with local candidates, analyzing political ads and encouraging students to talk about the election at home.

Posted in English, Special Events, Student Vote | Leave Comments »

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