inclusion rights and dignity - Community Living – Grimsby, Lincoln



inclusion rights and dignity - Community Living – Grimsby, Lincoln
Newsletter Spring 2012
Our Mission To provide services that support people with an intellectual disability so they may pursue individual goals and membership in the community. Promoting the inclusion rights and dignity of people who have an intellectual disability. Page 2
It’s All About Family At The Nicholls’ Home.
The minute you step into John and Linda Nicholls’ beautiful open concept home you can sense that
what matters most to this family is providing a warm inviting place where all are made to feel
welcomed and loved for who they are.
John and Linda have three children, their eldest son John, their daughter Cassy and their youngest
daughter Kate. When John and Linda became aware that their daughter Kate’s good friend Angel
was not able to stay at her current foster home and that she would need to be moved to another
town where she would not know anyone, they both knew they wanted to step forward with an
alternate option.
Kate and Angel had been good friends for over 7 years and over the past year Angel spent most
weekends at the Nicholls’ home. When John and Linda went house hunting they fell in love with a
wonderful open concept home that they knew would be perfect for the decision they had both
agreed was needed. Their new home was perfectly designed to welcome Angel into their family
through the Homeshare program offered at Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln.
John and Linda love providing a family environment that offers Angel an opportunity to immerse
herself in family life, family celebrations and family vacations. Kate’s favourite part of this new
family arrangement is that Angel’s room is right across the hall from her and that she and Angel are
able to spend lots of time together. Angel quickly offered that her favourite part of this new family
arrangement is spending more time with Kate and that now she is part of a family where she feels
like she truly fits in.
When Kate showed a gift she had made for her mother, a wall hanging of brightly coloured hearts
that had the words “live, love, laugh” carved on them, there was no need to ask what had inspired
Kate as these three words epitomized the Nicholls’ home perfectly!
Page 3
Community Living Grimsby Lincoln and West Lincoln extends our most sincere gratitude to the
staff of the Juravinski Cancer Centre for their donations of Christmas presents. Thanks to your
generous donations, the past holiday season was even more special for the people we support.
The much anticipated opening of the new West Niagara YMCA had the community quite excited.
We, at Community Living are also very delighted as it was the start of a new partnership
opportunity for us. We have been accepted with open arms by the YMCA and they are eager to
have our volunteers help out in many different roles. On opening day, November 27, 2011, I had
the privilege of spending the day at the front door greeting new members as they came through
with five volunteers who were raring to go! They were Chris, Karen, Katie, Heather and Doug. They
each came ready with a smile to greet the new members and rotated on two hour shifts. They did
well and showed great stamina and enthusiasm welcoming visitors to the new facility. There are
two of our participants continuing as regular volunteers with the YMCA. We would like to welcome
the YMCA to our community and express our appreciation for their inclusive spirit.
Submitted by: Sherri Merritt- Job Developer
Page 4
Come Out and Support Our
45th Annual Walk/Bike-a-thon May 5, 2012
There are many ways for you to support our annual event.
You can collect pledges and participate in this event.
You can make a cash donation. You can sponsor a kilometer.
You can be one of the 45 volunteers needed to run this event.
You can donate hotdogs, buns, salads or beverages to the BBQ.
Please Support Our Annual Walk/Bike-a-thon.
Help us to raise our target amount of $30,000 this year.
Please contact Deb Grieve-Knight
905 563 4115 ext 204
[email protected]
Support the 4th Annual
James Bradley Anderson Golf Tournament
Saturday August 11, 2012 at Emerald Pines Golf Club
Please join us in supporting this memorial golf tournament in honor of a young man
who touched the lives of many. This event is hosted by the Anderson Family and is
held at the Emerald Pines Golf Course in Port Colborne, Ontario. Entry fees are
$85.00 per golfer and include: tournament entry,18 holes of golf with cart,
hamburger at the turn, steak dinner, prizes and more. The cut off for entry is 80
golfers. Register early to ensure you have a spot for your team. Funds raised in
this tribute to Bradley are donated to Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West
Lincoln. To Sponsor a Hole, donate an Event Prize or for more details on how you
can support this wonderful event, please contact Larry Anderson 905 353 9809, Jim
Anderson 905 933 3130 or Bert Anderson 905 295 3930 or visit the event web site at
Support the 4th Annual Midway Farms BBQ
2295 Fourth Avenue, Jordan, Ontario
Saturday May 19, 2012 11 am – 2 pm
We invite you to join this annual fun filled event which is hosted by the
Cole Family to raise funds for the Children’s Weekend Respite Program.
Page 5
Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln
is proud to join the Canadian Blood Services in their
“Partners for Life!” program.
We invite each of our staff and their family members to join our
Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln Partners for Life Team!
To Register for the Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln Partners for Life Team
Just follow these Easy Steps!
Click on
Click on Partners for Life button
Click on the Member button
Click on the Sign Me up Button, fill in your personal information
and enter our Partner ID: COMM012547
Once you have registered please call 1-888-2 DONATE
to make an appointment at a clinic of your choice.
For further information please contact Debra Grieve-Knight
[email protected] 905 563 4115 ext 204
Membership to Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln & West Lincoln
Please consider becoming a member or renewing your membership.
With a small fee of $5.00 for individuals and $10.00 for a family membership, your membership
communicates your support of our local Association - Community Living - Grimsby, Lincoln and West
Lincoln and the services we provide throughout West Niagara to persons with an intellectual
disability. A membership application can be printed from our website or
can be sent to you by calling 905 563 4115 ext. 200.
If you would like to assist
Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln
in our effort to GO GREEN
please contact Debra Grieve-Knight
905 563 4115 ext 204 [email protected]
to receive your copy of the External Newsletter by email.
Page 6
Our team at Employment Services has been busy collaborating and brainstorming, utilizing the
mature work experience of staff that have been here throughout many job opportunities and the
minds of younger staff that have grown up with the new social media trend. Combining our
experiences, energy and motivation has led us to many new exciting opportunities for Employment
Services including our adopted “Got Jobs” campaign.
Originating from Sarnia-Lambton Community Living Employment Transitions, the “Got Jobs” drive
was a social media campaign they were willing to share with us.
The following link is a must see video which is part of this movement:
Looking at our Core Competencies, we found this particular one to be very important in
conjunction with what we are doing:
Collaboration is about communicating with others both within one’s team as well as with individuals,
agencies and organizations outside one’s immediate work area or span of control (e.g., with
community partners and stakeholders) to create alignment within and across groups. It is not only
encouraging but expecting collaborative efforts and information sharing across agency/organizational
lines toward shared outcomes.
Why it’s Important: This competency is about teamwork. Whether working with others within one’s
own team, cross-functionally, or in the community with community partners, the demonstrated
willingness to collaborate effectively with others is critical to creating alignment within and across
groups, and to providing high levels of service to those who are supported.
We are moving forward in this new world of technology and using every bit we can. The days of
door knocking and cold calling are slowly disappearing so we move into the world of social media.
Using new technologies such as YouTube, Twitter and Facebook (YES Facebook) we have
discovered an entirely different way of networking, enhanced communication and increased our
information gathering. As a result we can make use of these tools to easily relay our message and
purpose to the communities in which we have a presence.
Continued on Page 7……....
Page 7
As job developers with Employment Services our responsibility is to provide employers with
motivated, reliable and dependable long term employees. We are looking for employer
partnerships in the community to work with us to pursue this goal. Our purpose is to match the
businesses labour needs to the skills and abilities of the people in our labour pool, who have
developmental and/or physical challenges.
We have been sending a steady flow of emails and letters to various community businesses
explaining what our role is and how we can be an asset to their business. Whether it is through
finding someone in our job pool competitive employment, having a business out-source their
packaging, assembling, collating and other various tasks to us, or sending a supervised work crew
into a business to do on-site work, we can offer it all.
One of our latest ventures has involved contact with Mayor Mike Bradley from the City of Sarnia.
Mayor Bradley started an initiative in 2010, challenging all Mayors across Ontario to “do the right
thing” encouraging cities, towns and local businesses to hire persons with disabilities. This led us to
approaching one of our local Mayors from West Lincoln, Mayor Douglas Joyner. We had the
privilege of meeting with Mayor Douglas Joyner and Ms. Peggy Van Mierlo-West Director of Public
Works to discuss the initiative. It was a great opportunity to network and form a relationship with
them and the Township of West Lincoln and we are hoping this will continue to grow in the future.
Stay tuned as we launch our “Got Jobs” campaign. Look for our new brochure coming out soon and
as well we will be hosting an Open House in May at our new location of Employment Services
located at 183 South Service Road Grimsby.
Submitted by Amy Lacasse and Sherri Merritt
Heather and her employer, Karen
are part of the exciting new
“Got Jobs” initiative
of our Employment Services Team.
Page 8
4th Annual
re:Action4Inclusion Conference
Once a year, students from across the province come together at the re:Action4Inclusion Conference, an
annual event which is sponsored by Community Living Ontario, through the Community Inclusion
Initiative. This 3 day workshop focuses on providing youth the opportunity to network, learn and
explore ways to ensure our schools and communities are welcoming to people of all backgrounds and
abilities. Students and youth provide their thoughts and ideas on how youth can be supported to build
communities inclusive of all people and to promote inclusion in their communities.
This year Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln was honoured to sponsor these students
from Blessed Trinity Secondary School to attend this March 2012 event.
Back row: Jocelyn Harder, Sam Saynook, Sharon Phillips, Nicole Diamantino, Alleda Farrell, Jake Harder.
Front row: Sydney Anderson, Taylor van Wanrooy, Maranda Guerriero, Nicole Pouliot.
The guitar is the Voyageur.... the Cultural Six String Guitar by Jowi Taylor
Photo courtesy of Sharon Phillips, Special Education Teacher, Blessed Trinity Catholic High School
Page 9
The re:Action4Inclusion 2012 Conference Experience
On the weekend of March 2-4, 2012, nine students from Blessed Trinity Catholic High School had the
pleasure of attending the re:Action4Inclusion Conference held at the Geneva Centre in Orillia.
Besides enjoying breathtaking surroundings, the comforts of a hotel in a lodge setting, and super
yummy eats, students experienced a first rate conference focusing on breaking down the barriers to
Here are some of the highlights of the conference:
The conference was attended by approximately 150 high school students from across Ontario.
The weekend began with an energetic team building experience lead by the Drum Café which used an
interactive percussion event uniting all the members of the conference by the call of the drum…
Simply Fantastic! Various meet and greet activities on the Friday evening were followed by a campfire.
On Saturday March 3- Jowi Taylor, designer of the :”Voyageur” the Canadian Cultural Guitar treated
us to a video and personal presentation of the story of this special guitar. The Voyageur itself is made
from 63 pieces of Canadian history and heritage representing many different cultures, communities
and characters from all across the country. A further handful of elements adorn the strap and the
interior of the guitar-case. These materials were gathered primarily by Taylor over a two year period
thanks to the generosity of individuals, corporations and public institutions in every part of the country.
Jowi’s talk focused on how school is much more than a building: it’s a community that holds many
stories within it and each one of us has something to contribute to its make up.
We were treated to guitar solos by two of the very talented members of the Youth Advisory .. as well as
having our pictures taken with this very special, truly Canadian Guitar.
Norman Kunc- spoke on challenging our myths, stereotypes and prejudices of disability.
Norman's advocacy focused on the educational rights of students with disabilities. More recently, he
has directed his attention to how schools and communities can build a sense of belonging and avoid a
climate of allegiance based on a common enemy.
Dave Meslin- who is a community activist and professional rabble-rouster gave a talk on how to go
about effective change to make a difference in your own back yard.
One of the absolute highlights was a three hour presentation by Jennifer Hollet- A digital and social
media maven. Jenn has contributed a variety of content (blogs, chats, articles, videos) to numerous
news websites, and was a national digital media columnist for CBC News. At CBC, she reported for
Connect, The National, and CBC NN as well as managed Connect's social media presence. During
Toronto's G20 Summit, Jenn hosted CBC's G20: Street Level blog, which won Best Community Feature at
the Canadian Online Publishing Awards. While at CBC News, Jenn also covered social media's role in
international stories, including the earthquake in Haiti, and the uprisings in Egypt and Libya. Jennifer
spoke to our Re-Action group about sustainable change and the power of youth through the social
media forum.
I was extremely proud of all the students I took with me to this conference. They were engaged,
reached out to others, networked and truly showed the leadership skills and integrity that any teacher
or parent would be so proud of in a youth. These are our future leaders, in our homes, schools,
communities and will have the most impact on changing social policies. I was humbled and honored to
be part of their youth leadership weekend.
Submited by
Sharon Phillips, Special Education Teacher, Blessed Trinity Catholic High School.
Page 10
The Board of Directors has recently approved the establishment of a Foundation –
a separate non-profit charitable organization that will financially provide support
to the existing service organization. It is anticipated that this Foundation will be
operational in late Spring of 2012. It is our hope that this Foundation will greatly
aid in our efforts to continue to provide excellent services to many individuals
with a developmental disability living in West Niagara.
Anneke Blom
President of the
Board of Directors
The recent release of the Drummond report in Ontario identifies opportunities to
create further efficiencies and streamline the use of public funds in the social
services/developmental disabilities sector. We anxiously await the outcome of
the provincial budget and the impact that the Drummond report will have on
future funding in our sector.
The Board of Directors looks forward to many individuals, families, and staff
attending our upcoming Annual General Meeting on June 11, 2012. See below for
more details.
Please Mark Your Calendar To Attend
Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln and West Lincoln’s
47th Annual General Meeting
Monday June 11, 2012
At 5:30 pm
Balls Falls Centre for Conservation
3292 6 Avenue, Jordan ON
Our agency will celebrate its 47th year of service to the communities of Grimsby, Lincoln and West
Lincoln. We will host our Annual General Meeting on Monday, June 11th @ 5:30 pm with a brief
business meeting followed by refreshments, hors d’oeuvres and entertainment.
Please plan to attend this event.
Page 11
As spring has officially arrived along with warmer weather, our organization
looks forward to many new developments and opportunities for the upcoming
year. Much time has been invested in preparing for our two annual fundraising
events – the annual walkathon taking place on Saturday, May 5th and the annual
Grimsby Festival of Art scheduled for Saturday, September 8th. For more
information on these two events, please visit our website. The organization’s
strategic goals established in 2010, continue to be a priority in the day to day
operations and in future program development initiatives. As a recipient of
government funding, our agency continues to respond towards the attainment
and achievement of quality services to individuals living with a developmental
disability and enhanced accountability for the stewardship of public funds.
The Homeshare program is one of many programs we offer to persons who are
Sarina Labonté
individually matched with a family that is interested in sharing their home and Executive Director
family life. All families are carefully screened and are required to meet specific
criteria prior to being approved as a Homeshare provider. Currently, twenty-four individuals live with
a family who provides quality care and room and board on an ongoing basis. The Homeshare
program has had many years of successful placements with nurturing and caring families that have
provided an exceptional community and home life experience for individuals. We welcome and
thank the Nicholls’ family who have recently opened their home to a young lady, Angel. This family is
profiled on page 2 of this edition. At present, we are in the process of recruiting additional
Homeshare families and respite providers that are willing and able to provide care and a nurturing
home to individuals. Remuneration is provided. For more information on becoming a Homeshare
provider or respite provider, please contact Tracey Rohrer – Coordinator at (905) 563-4115 extension
Each year, our organization hosts an event to acknowledge the commitment and dedication of its staff
members and years of service. This year, twenty-one staff will receive awards for various years of
service at an annual appreciation dinner in April for staff, volunteers, and students. Sincere thanks
and congratulations to all of these staff for achieving 5, 10, 15, 20, 25 or 30 years of employment.
We thank the many individuals and corporations who have supported our organization over the past
year through their generous donations or gift of time through volunteering. Through the recent
assistance of Heart Niagara, the Niagara Pedal Angels of Advanced Care Paramedics from Niagara
EMS have donated two automated external defibrillators that will be installed at the Hopkin’s Centre
in Beamsville as well as our Employment Services Centre on the South Service Road in Grimsby. With
your financial support last year, our organization has been able to purchase new equipment, retrofit
homes, expand day programming facilities, and acquire new vehicles to better accommodate
accessibility for individuals in our service. We continue to have the capacity to accept donations on
line through our website at and clicking on the donations tab. All donations
will be processed through Canada Helps if donations are made through our website.
All requests and referrals for adult services continue to be processed by the Developmental Services
Ontario (DSO) agency. The Hamilton/Niagara DSO can be reached at 1-877-376-4674 or locally at
289-477-5305 or you can visit their website at for further information.
Best wishes for an enjoyable spring and summer season. Thank you sincerely for your
continued support of our organization and the important work that we do in West Niagara.
Sarina Labonté Executive Director
We pride ourselves in securing respectful jobs for our clients within the community. Sometimes
these jobs are paid less than minimum wage. We thought we would take this opportunity to give
some examples as to how and why this happens.
We currently have 3 such supported employment placements: 4 people making beds in a local
nursing home, 1 person working in a greenhouse and another at a lumber mill. All of these people
cannot complete all the tasks of a position in these locations, only a portion thereof. When compared
to an average worker, they are slower in pace and may need assistance to complete at least a portion
of the task they do. The bed makers earn $5.00 per hour, but, making beds is one task in a much
broader job description.
When job opportunities arise we always have to look at how the clients are supported and the nature
of the work. In a job paid less than minimum wage, the agency pays the person and invoices the
company for their work. The amount is the same, however, the agency has WSIB coverage for the
individual, there is a support worker monitoring the placement and performance and the employer
has a “middleman” so to speak to help stabilize the placement in the event more training is required.
We use these less than minimum wage opportunities for training and a transition placement for
people who have not yet gained work experience. Non minimum wage jobs allow us to train the
employee and then move forward to applying for a competitive wage job in the community. There
are also some cases where someone may hold a less than minimum wage job for a length of time and
this is at their family’s discretion. We always offer the prospect to move forward into a minimum
wage paying position.
All of our individuals that work in-house are paid using a straightforward formula. The Packaging
Centre jobs are paid “per unit” so a fluctuation on bi-weekly pays simply means the work amount
has increased or decreased for that time frame. Natural Abilities’ participants are reimbursed the net
sales after the cost of supplies are deducted.
Rent or staff salaries are not factored in.
An interesting fact, persons who are on ODSP will automatically receive an extra $100 dollars on
their monthly ODSP earnings if they make as little as $10.00 a month. This does however, require that
pay stubs are submitted to ODSP to verify there were earnings!
On the same topic, once their earnings exceed $200.00 per month, their ODSP is reduced
In any case, our number one goal is that the people we support are always treated equally and
respectably in the job they hold.
Submitted by Margaret Rohan
Community Living Grimsby, Lincoln & West Lincoln
P.O. Box 220, Beamsville, ON L0R 1B0
Phone 905 563 4115 Fax 905 563 8887

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