THE FMC HOT STOVE: COOKING UP SOME COMMUNITY INCLUSION
On February 3rd, Families Matter Cooperative offered a unique networking and knowledge exchange event called “The Hot Stove and Collab.” This gathering was designed to offer parents, siblings and caregivers new tools, knowledge and information on the future of housing for persons with developmental disabilities.
- Martha Beach (Developmental Services Ontario Housing Coordinator)
- Marge McCabe (Housing Task Force 2014-2018)
- Sharon Edwards (Former FMC Board Member)
“It was a great event, we are very pleased with the results,” said FMC Executive Director Jeff Bond. “The feedback was very positive and we’ve heard that some participants will continue some of the work they started during The Collab portion. Allison was fantastic, her approach and ability to share her knowledge was an important contribution to our engaging panel and the dialogues that ensued.”
LiveWorkPlay believes in the important contribution of independent family networks, and is excited to see the success of events like The Hot Stove and Collab.
“Family members are often overwhelmed with urgent issues,” said Allison. “The opportunity to get together on a Sunday morning and have deeper conversations and access to different perspectives is hard to come by. I see great value in these FMC events and the diversity of the guests, because family members can get a comprehensive answer from a variety of perspectives, all at the same gathering.”
CELEBRATING JOBS, PARTNERSHIP WITH FEDERAL GOVERNMENT
Last issue we talked about having the opportunity to meet with Minister of Children, Community and Social Services Lisa MacLeod to discuss the importance of updating the Ontario Employment Standards Act to include full protection for people with intellectual disabilities and/or autism. This month we bring some good news about what can happen when we focus on authentic employment outcomes (work by LiveWorkPlay that is funded mainly by the MCCSS Ontario Disability Support Program – Employment Supports).
Ottawa West-Nepean MP Anita Vandenbeld rose in the House of Commons to address the 1st Session of the 42nd Parliament of Canada on February 19, 2019, and discussed her recent Town Hall for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities, (which included LiveWorkPlay member Janet Balcome). She also raised the importance of the federal government taking a leadership role in the employment of members of this population, and congratulated the Treasury Board Secretariat and Public Service Commission on their partnership with LiveWorkPlay for facilitating 75 jobs in 25 departments! This is an edited version (click image above), the entire clip may be viewed in context on CPAC just after the 53 minute mark. For more information about LiveWorkPlay and employment for people with intellectual disabilities in the private and public sector, see liveworkplay.ca/gotjobs!
In other exciting news about the work of the employment supports team, in June they will be heading en masse to the Canadian Association for Supported Employment (CASE) annual conference, conveniently located in Montreal for 2019! Jen Soucy and Anna Nelson will be the lead presenters for a LiveWorkPlay session on Thursday morning, which will detail the federal government partnership!
COLLABORATION IN THE NORTH!
With a journey that started in Thunder Bay, Julie Kingstone and Keenan Wellar took part in a unique opportunity organized through the From Presence To Citizenship collaborative, spending time with Superior Greenstone Association for Community Living the week of January 28. SGACL Executive Director Sheila Zappitelli was interviewed about the experience in Community Living Ontario Update Friday.
“They talked about how they’ve helped people to be a part of their community, to live, work and play…we want to model our supports after that. They also looked at inefficiencies and are helping with new processes.”
The annual From Presence to Citizenship Learning Exchange is one of the ways that agency partnerships are being established, and this year’s event earlier in February receive the best reviews to date, and will hopefully spark more conversations and collaboration throughout 2019-2020 and beyond.
FOUR SHORT YEARS AGO: “THE HAVEN” DREAM BECOMES REALITY!
It is hard to believe it was just four years ago that LiveWorkPlay was viewing drawings (see below, Julie looking hopeful back in 2014) for the planned Multifaith Housing Initiative affordable housing community which became known as “The Haven in Barrhaven.”
The proof that the dream became a reality is found in our Just Enough Support video series(most of the indoor and outdoor scenes are either from The Haven or Centretown Citizens Ottawa Corporation, CCOC turned 40 last year). The outstanding design elements that have helped make The Haven such a success were recently featured in the Ottawa Citizen. Congratulations!
NEWS WE CAN USE: THANKS FOR SHARING!
A couple of new items came our way from our members and partners, and we are happy to pass them along to our readers!
First up Outaouais Moving surprised Gillian Gillespie with recognition of her second year work anniversary (pictured above). A hard worker who is also very dedicated: neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow keeps Gillian from making the trek from her home in Ottawa to her workplace in Gatineau! The company has 50 employees, and most of them have been with the company for 15 years or more, and with good reason! Kym Leroux, Michael Kolberg, and the rest of their leadership team work hard to ensure a welcoming and inclusive workplace. Outaouais Moving also received an employer award at Make A Buzz in 2018, check out the video from the ceremony.
Gillian is not the only unstoppable force among our membership, as evidenced by this photo that came our way from one of our very first community partners, Meals on Wheels Ottawa!Pictured are Lucas Rodgers and Jo Buss on one of this year’s many snowy afternoons, getting started on their route. This this has been a long hard winter, making this meal service all the more critical for those who are challenged to leave their own homes. Lucas is one of the original group of LiveWorkPlay members, and along with his family, made the original introduction to Meals on Wheels back in 1997. We are forever grateful!
TICKETS GOING FAST – MAKE A BUZZ OTTAWA: THURSDAY, MAY 9!
Our next event is the Celebration of Inclusion Family Feast on March 29, and then the big one: Make A Buzz Ottawa 2019 on May 9! This event always sells out, so if you would like to attend, ticket sales are already open and we recommend you purchase them before the end of March.
The Celebration of Inclusion Family Feast incorporates the commemoration of World Down Syndrome Day (March 21), World Autism Awareness Day (April 2), National Volunteer Week (starts April 7), and International Day of Families (May 15). The purpose of the evening is to enjoy togetherness and to affirm our commitment to a welcoming and inclusive community for all. There will also be the presentation of several Ottawa South Volunteer Recognition Awards (LiveWorkPlay headquarters is in the riding of Ottawa South MP David McGuinty).
We hope you have enjoyed this jam-packed edition of The LiveWorkPlay News. If you like what you see, why not make a donation? We’ve got a new and improved donation form that saves you time and gives you more options!