Justice & Diversity

Community Connections Support Services envisions a vibrant and inclusive society that embraces equality and diversity by promoting racial and LGBTQ2S+ justice and eliminating discrimination for all.

We acknowledge the land that we live, work, and play on as the traditional territories of the Okanagan, Ktunaxa, and Sinixt Nations.

HSSBC – Virtual Session

Dear Home Sharing Community Member,We hope you’re doing well. We wanted to remind you about our upcoming Connect & Collaborate session. This session is all about exploring mental health.Don’t miss out on this opportunity to hear our amazing speaker Dr. Connie Coniglio.Use This Zoom Link to Joinhttps://zoom.us/j/98933186856
Presenter:
Kelsey Savage (she/her) began her training in sexual health education in 2014. Since then, she has become a Certified Sexual Health Educator, and worked independently in the BC public and private school system, as well as the Community Living Sector. She managed the Options for Sexual Health Vancouver Clinic at BC Women’s Hospital for half a decade, and has been part of the Real Talk team since its inception in 2018. In 2023, she led the Connecting Queer Communities Project, and is now the SOGI Culture Development Lead for Kinsight Society.kelsey@real-talk.org 
John Woods (he/him) has worked in the community living sector since 1992, and with Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion since 1997. He is also a Certified Sexual Health Educator. John founded Real Talk in 2017 and is the organization’s manager. John also works with Options for Sexual Health in their Education department. John holds a BA from the University of Manitoba. In his free time he enjoys running, biking, and composing music. john@real-talk.org Hi! I’m Alison and I’m from Vancouver. I use she/fae pronouns. I am neurodiverse and queer. I have a Master’s Degree from Athabasca University in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in Adult Education and Disability. It just means that I am taking many theories from many different subjects from the social sciences (think of anthropology or sociology) and putting it into my own terms for my thesis. I have a radio show and podcast on Co-op Radio about arts and culture in the disability community, called The Self Advocate. When I’m not studying or working on my radio show, I like to knit, go to festivals, concerts, art shows, and conferences, and watch both The Young and The Restless and reruns of Law and Order (any of the franchise!). Did you know that there are two queer couples on The Young and The Restless?! 
Session Details: 
Date: April 18, 2024 Time: 10:00AM – 11:30 AM (PST) Location: Virtual session via Zoom Zoom Link: https://zoom.us/j/98933186856
Can’t Attend Live? We’ve Got You Covered! 
We understand that some of you may have work commitments and might not be able to attend the session live. Don’t worry; The session will be recorded, and if you’ve registered for the session, you’ll receive access to the recording.  
Pre-Submit Your Questions 
For those attending in-person or may not be able to attend, we invite you to pre-submit your questions via this LINK. This will help us prepare information and/or resources in advance.  We answer pre-submitted questions first and time permitting live questions.
Connect with us on social media! Facebook Group Instagram  If you have any questions or need accommodations, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly. We are here to assist you.
We hope you can join us for this important session. Thank you for being an integral part of our community, and we look forward to seeing you!
 We acknowledge that HSSSBC office operates on the traditional, ancestral and unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples-Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh & Musqueam First Nations. We respect the land and honour this tradition of land acknowledgment that dates back centuries for Indigenous people.   CONFIDENTIALITY NOTICE: This message and any accompanying documents contain confidential information intended for a specific individual purpose.  This message is private and protected by law.  If you are not the intended recipient, you are hereby notified that any disclosure, copying or distribution, or the taking of any action based on the contents of this information, is strictly prohibited. LogoCopyright (C) 2024 Home Sharing Support Society BC. All rights reserved.
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Mental Health and Behaviour Interface – Dr. Palanisamy

Please save the date! Feel free to share with anyone who may be interested.

Have you been confused by hearing ‘they don’t have severe mental illness, they don’t have an Axis 1 diagnosis, they are not psychotic, and they are not certifiable?’

Have you ever wondered why psychiatrists ask so many questions?

Do you find it hard to tell the differences between Functional Behavioural Assessment and Functional Analysis and would like to understand what the terms ‘positive behavioural support plan’, ‘safety plan’, ‘behavioural support plan’ mean?

Would you be interested in learning how behavioural consultants can work together with psychiatrists in managing people with IDD and mental illness?

Join Us for the 2nd Session on ‘Mental Health and Behaviour Interface’ as we would be covering these issues in the presentation. 

You will be receiving a registration link in the next few days 

Date & Time: 7th March 2024 | 12:00 noon to 1:15 pm

Platform: Zoom

Registration: https://us06web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_DqIz8DKTRMChPy20dQZ1Lw

Presenters

Aubrey Mosher (BCBA), Michelle Upshaw (BCBA), Vikram Palanisamy (Psychiatrist)

Facilitator: Anne Halas – Facilitator

Topics Covered:

  • Terminology

·       Psychiatric Terms: Severe mental illness, Psychosis, not certifiable, Axis 1 Diagnosis

·       Clarification on terms like FBA, PBS, BSP, Safety Plan, Crisis / De-escalation Plans, Skill building plans

  • Psychiatric and Behavioral Assessment insights
  • Collaboration between BCBA and Psychiatrists with case example

Who Will Benefit: Behavioral therapists, social workers, occupational therapists, nurses, CLBC facilitators, family doctors and other staff working with individuals with Intellectual Disabilities.

Preparation: Watch our first presentation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TeDI2wOi8M

Dr Vikram Palanisamy

Psychiatrist

Home Sharing Support Society BC

Logo
What’s On at the HSSSBCFebruary 2024 Edition
NTG 2024 Family Webinar SeriesRegisterMental Health: Home Sharing Community RegisterCo-Design LabsRespiteJoin


Happy February to everyone in the Home Sharing community! We have been very busy at the HSSSBC planning events, speakers & opportunities for you to provide your input to make a difference in home sharing.
This month CLBC announced the new NTG 2024 Family Webinar Series which includes 5 free webinars discussing again and dementia with an intellectual disability. Registration is required.

Learn more about this program visit NTG’s Website or by clicking here.
February 27th, 2023: 1pm-2pm ESTTopic: Process of Aging
March 12th, 2024: 1pm-2pm ESTTopic: Early Screening for Cognitive Changes
March 26th, 2024: 1pm-2pm ESTTopic: Life Planning for Different Phases of the Life Journey
April 9th, 2024: 1pm-2pm ESTTopic: Behavioral Changes that Occur with Aging & Dementia
April 23rd, 2024: 1pm-2:30pm ESTTopic: Family Panel – Sharing Personal Experiences
Our Connect & Collaborate Session this month is a webinar discussing Mental Health in the Home Sharing Community!
Overview of SessionEmotional Well-being, Stress Management, and Self-Care in Home Sharing ArrangementsSupporting people with mental health diagnosisSupporting people with complex support needs (substance abuse, challenging behaviours)Resources, Supports & Information
February 15, 2024 – Time: 10:00 – 11:30 AM
Link for registration
Want to see what is coming up in future Connect & Collaborate sessions? Check out our events HERE. We heard your feedback & this year there will be more opportunities for networking & connections at each session.
Are you part of the home sharing community? Do you want to access free Harm Reduction Training?
This course is designed to empower you with practical knowledge and strategies that can be applied both personally and within the scope of home sharing. As we continue our commitment to the well-being of our members, we believe that investing in harm reduction education is a meaningful step towards creating a safer and more supportive homes and communities.
Key Course Details:Duration: 30 days (self-paced) Prerequisites: Basic computer skills and access to MS Office 2010 or later Language: English (reading and writing at a grade 8 level) Enrollment: Register at any time during the month or year
Link for registration
Co-Design Labs
Our Co-Design Labs are based on the philosophy community-led lived-experience. This means that we invite people to engage as members of the home sharing community, to share their direct personal experiences. These experiences are important as they hold the nuances and elements of lived-experience from community stories, events, and happenings that are critical to the framing and shaping of experience.
Our co-design labs  aim to always work closely with how the communities we are collaborating with shape and define lived-experience from the perspectives of people within co-design.
Our current topic of focus is respite.  The home sharing communities expertise and experience will be important as we continue to plan for the future of home sharing.
Join our co-design lab to provide your input. 
Register HERE
New CLBC Program to Protect Home Sharing Providers from Property Damage

Dear Home Sharing Providers,

We are pleased to inform you about the launch of a property support program that will provide home sharing providers with comprehensive insurance coverage against significant property damage and protection from occasional minor property damage (outside of normal wear and tear) caused by individuals supported in home sharing.

We appreciate your dedication and patience over the years while we worked towards this important initiative. Your input and feedback have been instrumental in shaping this program, and we are thrilled to see it come to fruition.

This group policy is effective immediately and fully funded by CLBC. If you provide home sharing services under a contract with an approved CLBC Agency and have homeowner or tenant insurance, you will automatically receive coverage.

Individualized Funding agreements or Person-Centred Societies / Microboards are covered by this program if you have ‘home sharing’ as a funded service in your current CLBC contract. Agents and Directors of Person-Centered Societies should contact their CLBC analyst if they need to make a claim.

We recognize that home sharing providers play a critical role in our services, providing essential support and care to individuals with diverse needs. We also understand that accidents can happen, and damages to homes or property may occur as a result of individual support needs or unforeseen incidents.

The new Home Sharing Property Support Program safeguards home sharing providers through two different streams: 



1. Insurance Rider for Major or Catastrophic Damages:

If you are under contract with an agency, you are eligible for this component which offers extensive protection against major or catastrophic damages. This program aligns with your existing insurance arrangement, providing coverage of up to $500,000 with a deductible of $25,000. We will ensure a smooth claims process for you by covering the deductible if a claim proceeds. Upon enrollment, you will receive a certificate of coverage, completed by your contracting agency, and an adjuster will work collaboratively with you and your agency to assess damages should you need to make a claim.

This program is fully funded by CLBC, and we will work with your contracting agency to arrange payment or reimbursement of any deductible.



2. Reimbursement Program for Minor Damages:

In addition to the Insurance Rider, we are introducing a reimbursement program to cover minor damages. This program reimburses home sharing providers with the cost of repairing minor damages to their homes caused by the individuals they support. Our CLBC funded home sharing agencies will work closely with home sharing providers to assess damages.

When damage occurs, the contracting agency will work closely with the home sharing provider to assess the damage. For damages less than $1,500, agencies can authorize reimbursement directly. For damages over $1,500, agencies will seek pre-approval from their CLBC analyst. Agencies will invoice CLBC on a regular basis for the approved damages, and this approach streamlines the payment process, ensuring efficient approval and payment for minor damages.

Thank you for your ongoing commitment to the individuals we serve and for being an integral part of the CLBC community.



Additional Resources:

Supporting Documents: To help you learn more about this program and how to make a claim, we have posted further information on our CLBC website including a list of Frequently Asked Questions and a Guidance Document for Agencies (home sharing providers may also find this document helpful). You can view these materials on the Home Sharing Property Support Program webpage here.

Information Session: We have scheduled an information session for home sharing providers and service providers with CLBC staff and the insurance provider. Mark your calendar; the session is on Wednesday, January 17 from 11am to 12pm (PST). Stay tuned for a formal invite! For those who cannot attend, it will be recorded and posted on the CLBC website by the end of January.

If you need further information about the program, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your agency.

CLBC Update for Individuals and Families

Welcome to the December 2023 edition of CLBC’s Update for Individuals and Families, our last edition of the year. As a reminder, you can find all Updates (including past editions) posted on our website here. You can also check out CLBC’s Facebook page here and Twitter page here.If you know of anyone who would like to receive future Updates, please share the link to our sign up page with them. If you have a specific question, or feedback about this update, you can send an email to CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca.Topics in this edition include:CLBC and Government NewsCLBC releases progress report for International Day of Persons with DisabilitiesNew Chair for the CLBC Provincial Advisory CommitteeApply to be on CLBC’s Accessibility CommitteeCLBC Indigenous Advisory Committee unveils new logoLand acknowledgement ceremony held in Prince George, Lheidli T’enneh TerritoryHousing Innovation Survey extended to December 31Your voice counts! Provide your feedback on the Canada Disability Benefit
 Self Advocacy CornerSelf advocate athlete is making a differenceSelf Advocates of Semiahmoo share videoEnjoy the Holiday Edition of the Kamloops Self Advocate NewsletterStaying Supported and ConnectedCrafting a vision for an inclusive lifeCall for Workshop Proposals for Inclusion BC’S annual conferenceCanadian Health and Wellbeing in Developmental Disabilities Digital Conference taking place in FebruaryResources available to support mental healthConcurrent Disorders Webinars offered by BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services Upcoming Plan Institute WebinarsComplete a survey to validate how poverty is measured in CanadaCLBC Community CouncilsJoin a Community Council event in your local communityRichmond Community Council GatheringVancouver Council hosts Celebration of Community Inclusion Join a Community Council
 Stories and CelebrationEngaging around housing at Housing CentralVideo profiles creative partnership supporting people with developmental disabilities who have complex needs
 CLBC and Government News

CLBC releases progress report for International Day of Persons with Disabilities

A report cover design featuring pictures of people smiling.Earlier this month, December 3 marked the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD). This annual day of recognition is about promoting the rights and well-being of people with disabilities and raising awareness of the inclusion of people in all aspects of political, social, economic and cultural life.

Many community celebrations took place, including a self-advocate panel discussion hosted by BC People First and a screening of the Freedom Tour movie hosted by the BC Self Advocacy Leadership Network.

To help honour this day, CLBC released the first report documenting progress towards our 2022-2025 Strategic Plan goals and the vision for “communities of belonging, and lives of connection.”

Learn more and read about key achievements from the first year of the plan here.


New Chair for the CLBC Provincial Advisory Committee
 
A man stands smiling with his arms crossed in front a large plant. He is wearing a blue shirt and glasses.Congratulations to Zafar Adeel, member of the Simon Fraser Community Council, who was appointed by the CLBC Board of Directors as the next Chair of the Provincial Advisory Committee (PAC). In addition to being a parent of a young man who receives support from CLBC, Zafar is a professor at Simon Fraser University and a resource parent with the Family Support Institute. Click here to read more about Zafar.
 
For more information about the Provincial Advisory Committee and how to get involved in your local Community Council, contact CLBC’s Community Engagement team at CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca.


Apply to be on CLBC’s Accessibility Committee
 
British Columbia’s accessibility law, the Accessible British Columbia Act, was put into place in June 2021. To align with this law, CLBC is creating an Accessibility Committee and is currently accepting applications.

The committee will help us identify, remove and prevent barriers, and guide us to become a more accessible organization for all people with disabilities.

The Accessibility Committee will meet virtually about four times per year. Meetings will be approximately 1.5 hours long and held in the mid to late afternoon on a weekday.

Learn more about the Accessibility Committee here, including how to submit an application to join the committee by January 5, 2024.


CLBC Indigenous Advisory Committee unveils new logo

Symbols play an important role in Indigenous cultures across Canada. They serve as visual markers, connecting individuals and communities, collective traditions and ancestral wisdom. They are powerful tools that convey cultural identity and foster a sense of empowerment and resilience.

As part of November’s Indigenous Disability Awareness Month, CLBC’s Indigenous Advisory Committee (IAC) proudly shared its logo, a symbol that honours the committee’s past and will represent it into the future.

“The support for, and incorporation of, the new Indigenous Advisory Committee logo is another positive step forward by CLBC as it continues its journey forward. Today, and in generations to come, Indigenous peoples will see this logo and know that they are not only part of CLBC and welcomed, but will be forever instrumental in its ongoing success,” says Neil Belanger, IAC Chair and CEO of the BC Aboriginal Network on Disability Society.

Read more about the new logo and the meaning behind it here.

The logo of CLBC's Indigenous Advisory Committee.


Land acknowledgement ceremony held in Prince George, Lheidli T’enneh Territory
 
CLBC’s Prince George office recently hosted a special land acknowledgement ceremony to show recognition and respect for the unceded traditional ancestral territory of the Lheidli T’enneh peoples, past and present, whose land our office resides on.
 
Read the full story here.


Housing Innovation Survey extended to December 31
 
The UBC Centre for Inclusion and Citizenship is working with CLBC to gather data about housing. They are running a survey on housing innovation that aims to study innovative solutions to inclusive housing options.
 
Any experience and knowledge that survey participants share will be valuable in helping to understand what supports innovative housing solutions.

Click here to take the Housing Innovations Survey before December 31, 2023.
 

Your voice counts! Provide your feedback on the Canada Disability Benefit

The Government of Canada is asking for feedback from Canadians to help inform the design of the regulations for the Canada Disability Benefit. This new benefit aims to address financial hardships and reduce poverty among working-age Canadians with disabilities. Learn more about the Canada Disability Benefit here.
 
Feedback is being collected from now until Thursday, December 21, 2023. All Canadians, especially individuals with disabilities, their caregivers and family members, as well as organizations dedicated to working with people with disabilities, are invited to participate and share their views. Learn more about this opportunity and how to provide your feedback here.
 
There will be more opportunities to provide input after draft regulations are published, which is expected to be in 2024.

 Self Advocacy Corner
 Self advocate athlete is making a difference

Self advocate, CLBC employee and athlete David Johnston was recently featured in a Special Olympics article. He has a passion for sharing stories about athletes and is currently taking part in a six-month Athlete Storytelling Training Series. Through this training opportunity, seven athletes across the Special Olympics North America Region learn storytelling skills such as writing a lead, conducting an interview, drafting a social media post and pitching a story to an editor.
 
Read more about how David is taking his own experiences and turning them into a passion for helping others.


Self Advocates of Semiahmoo share videoTo recognize the recent International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the Self Advocates of Semiahmoo created a video for their Facebook channel sharing some of the things that they have accomplished and are proud of in their lives, as well as advice and ideas for others.

You can watch the video here.
Enjoy the Holiday Edition of the Kamloops Self Advocate NewsletterLooking for interesting interviews, good jokes, recipes and ways to stay connected during the holiday season? Check out the Holiday Edition of Krystian Shaw’s Kamloops Self Advocate Newsletter, written by people with diverse abilities.

You can read the newsletter on the Self Advocate Net website here.

 Staying Supported and Connected

Crafting a vision for an inclusive life
 
Families Supporting Regular Equitable Authentic Lives (R-EAL) hosts an online Imagine the Possibilities event each month. This is a safe and supportive space for families to explore the possibilities and opportunities of lifelong inclusion for their family member with a developmental disability.
 
Upcoming sessions will take place on:December 19, 2023 at 6:30pm (PST)January 16, 2024 at 6:30pm (PST)  Learn more about the event and reserve your spot here.

An invitation to an online webinar about inclusion. It features a woman with her arms outstretched and speaking.
 
 
Call for Workshop Proposals for Inclusion BC’S annual Conference
 
Inclusion BC’s annual conference, Everybody Belongs, will be held from May 30 to June 1, 2024 in Nanaimo. The call for workshop proposals is now open. Anyone interested is invited to share their knowledge and experience with an engaged audience.

Inclusion BC is looking for proposals in the areas of community and disability supports, early years supports, education and childcare, employment and skill development, health and wellness, and housing and income supports.

Check out the Inclusion BC website here for more information on what they are looking for and how to apply.

A pink and blue banner that says: Call for Proposals.
 

Canadian Health and Wellbeing in Developmental Disabilities Digital Conference taking place in February

Join the third annual Health and Wellbeing in Developmental Disabilities digital conference taking place virtually on February 7 and 8, 2024. The conference will feature health professionals, community partners and people with lived experience sharing practices that contribute to positive physical and mental health outcomes for people with developmental disabilities throughout their lives.

Learn more about the conference and register here.


Resources available to support mental health

The holiday season is a joyful time for many. However, we also recognize that for others it can be a challenging time. Here are some resources that are available to support anyone dealing with challenges during this time and throughout the year:HelpStartsHere.gov.bc.ca – Managed by the B.C. Ministry of Mental Health and Addictions, this website provides information and resources around wellbeing, mental health and substance use. The phone line 310-6789 (no area code required) is also available for anyone seeking emotional support and mental health information.
 The Government of Canada Crisis Line – People across Canada can call and text 9-8-8, a new three-digit service, for help when they need it most. The service offers trauma-informed and culturally affirming support to anyone who is thinking of suicide, or who is worried about someone they know. 
Concurrent Disorders Webinars offered by BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services

BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services is offering a webinar series called Demystifying Concurrent Disorders created by patients and families for patients and families.

You can watch webinars from the Demystifying Concurrent Disorders series here, and also find information about upcoming webinars as they are scheduled.
 

Upcoming Plan Institute Webinars

The logo and wordmark of Plan Institute. Plan Institute hosts regular webinars on the Registered Disability Saving Plan (RDSP) and Wills, Trusts and Estate Planning.

Registered Disability Savings Plan Webinars

The Beginner RDSP workshop (Level 1) is for those who want to learn what an RDSP is, who qualifies, how to apply for the Disability Tax Credit, and how to open an RDSP.

The Advanced RDSP workshop (Level 2) is for those who already have an RDSP or have already taken Level 1 and would like to deepen their knowledge and learn how to maximize growth.

The next RDSP webinars are scheduled for January 10, 2024 (Level 1) and January 17, 2024 (Level 2).

Learn more about the RDSP webinars and register for upcoming sessions here.

Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning (BC) Webinars

In this webinar, attendees learn how to arrange their estate, prepare a will, and the various ins and outs of setting up a trust specifically for a relative or loved one with a disability.

The next Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning webinars are scheduled for January 18, February 15 and March 28, 2024.

Learn more about the Wills, Trusts, and Estate Planning (BC) webinar and register here.
 
 
Complete a survey to validate how poverty is measured in Canada
 
Statistics Canada is gathering input from Canadians through a survey to help validate how poverty is measured. It is important that the voice and experience of people with disabilities is represented in this data.
 
Learn more about the Market Basket Measure of Poverty Survey here.
 
Anyone interested can complete the survey here.

 CLBC Community Councils

Join a Community Council event in your local community
 
A group of people sit around a large table sharing a meal.Councils have been busy over the fall planning holiday events and sharing connections over a meal, such as the CLBC Upper Fraser Council pictured here at a recent Council gathering in Abbotsford in November.
 
Anyone interested is invited to attend these upcoming gatherings to learn how Community Councils are making a difference and find out ways to get involved:
 

Richmond Community Council Gathering

When: January 25 from 7:00pm to 9:00pm PST
Where: Thompson Community Centre at 5151 Granville Avenue, Richmond
RSVP: CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca 
 

Vancouver Council hosts Celebration of Community Inclusion

The Vancouver Community Council is hosting a celebration of community inclusion on January 27, 2024, from 11am to 2pm.

The event will highlight the abilities and accomplishments of persons with developmental disabilities and include presentations from self advocates and allies, information tables, games, a caricature artist, snacks and prize. Click the picture to the right to see all the details.

For anyone interested in attending, RSVP to spencer@bcdisability.com.


Join a Community Council

Are you interested in volunteering to create inclusive communities? Community Councils are an important way for CLBC to listen and learn from people we serve. Learn more about CLBC Community Councils here.

Contact CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca to set up a time with the Community Engagement team to learn more about volunteering on a CLBC Community Council.

 Stories and Celebration Engaging around housing at Housing Central

​​​During November, attendees from across B.C. took part in the sold out Housing Central conference in Vancouver, with CLBC staff and self advocates playing important roles. Hosted each year by the BC Non Profit Housing Association (BCNPHA) and delivered in partnership with the Aboriginal Housing Management Association (AHMA) and the Co-operative Housing Federation of BC (CHF BC), Housing Central is Canada’s leading education, professional development and networking event for the community housing sector. CLBC is a proud sponsor of the conference.

During the conference, CLBC Housing Leads were at our booth in the exhibitors’ hall actively connecting with attendees about the importance of inclusive, accessible and culturally safe housing. CLBC staff also presented some of the conference’s informative and engaging sessions.

Read more about CLBC at Housing Central 2023 here

You can also learn more about inclusive housing by visiting the KeyToHomeBC.ca website, created through a partnership between CLBC and Inclusion BC.

A group of seven people stand and sit behind a table smiling at a conference.


Video profiles creative partnership supporting people with developmental disabilities who have complex needs

At the Housing Central Conference, CLBC CEO Ross Chilton presented a new video profiling Grosvenor House in Surrey. This creative pilot project between CLBC, Lookout Housing and Health Society and the Fraser Region Aboriginal Friendship Centre Association (FRAFCA) is helping people with developmental disabilities who have complex needs, including those dealing with addiction and homelessness.

You can watch Ross’s speech here and click the image below to watch the video on Grosvenor House.




Signing off

Community Living BC wishes you a happy and safe holiday season and best wishes for the new year!

CLBC thanks the people we serve, their families, service providers, the self-advocacy community, our community partners and British Columbians across the province for their efforts during this past year to help keep people safe, connected and included in their communities.

We look forward to bringing you more news, information and resources when the Update resumes in late January 2024.

Until next edition… A graphic of different festive plants including holly, with the message: Happy Holidays.

CLBC Update December 2023

CLBC reminder to get your flu
and COVID-19 shots
Community Living BC encourages anyone who has not yet had their flu and COVID-19 update vaccinations to do so as soon as possible.

The BC Centre for Disease Control reports that while COVID-19 activity has started to decline, it continues to be a risk especially for those who remain unvaccinated. At the same time, the number of influenza cases has begun to climb and adult visits to emergency departments for respiratory symptoms have increased.

CLBC encourages the people it serves, families and support workers to get both vaccines at the same time. You can find more information about the fall respiratory illness immunization campaign here.

Individuals supported by CLBC remain a priority to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. Invitations were sent by email or text message to everyone who has registered to receive a COVID-19 immunization in B.C. The invitation has a direct link to book your COVID-19 and flu appointment online. These vaccines are free and available at pharmacies, health authority clinics and some primary care providers’ offices.

You can also book COVID-19 and flu immunizations through the Get Vaccinated system. If you need help scheduling your vaccine appointment, call: 1-833-838-2323. This phone line is available 7 days a week, from 7am to 7pm, and from 9am to 5pm on statutory holidays.

If you are a person who receives CLBC supports and are unsure about getting your shots or still trying to decide, you can listen to a personal message from Dr. Bonnie Henry and stories from other self-advocates on our You Can Too! web page here.

CLBC urges all who intended to get the shots, but have delayed doing so, to book both shots at the same time and before the holiday season.

CLBC Update

Welcome to the November 2023 edition of CLBC’s Update for Individuals and Families. As a reminder, you can find all Updates (including past editions) posted on our website here. You can also check out CLBC’s Facebook page here and Twitter page here. If you know of anyone who would like to receive future Updates, please share the link to our sign up page with them. If you have a specific question, or feedback about this update, you can send an email to CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca.

Topics in this edition include:

CLBC and Government News
Recognizing Indigenous Disability Awareness Month
Join CLBC’s open board meeting on November 29
Watch for your COVID-19 and flu vaccine invitation
Join the conversation about Community Inclusion Services
Represent your community on CLBC’s Provincial Advisory Committee
Recognizing International Day of Persons with Disabilities
Housing Central conference coming up in November
 
Self Advocacy Corner
Camping out with TALK Northwest
Share your photo with CLBC and the Celebrate Diverse ABILITIES magazine
Why don’t we talk about FASD?
Join People First of Canada’s LGBTQIA2S+ Working Group
Know your rights and responsibilities living in home sharing

Staying Supported and Connected
New Nidus website is now live
Learn with NIDUS about Representation Agreements and what happens after death
Is your family looking to hire support staff? Join this presentation
New accessible Human Rights resources available

CLBC Community Councils
CLBC Community Councils are raising awareness about aging
Volunteer on a CLBC Community Council
Upper Fraser and South Vancouver Island Community Councils hosting open houses in November

Stories and Celebration
Widening Our World (WOW) Award recipients recognized
Reflecting on Community Inclusion Month
Recognizing Remembrance Day and Indigenous Veterans Day  

 
CLBC and Government News


Recognizing Indigenous Disability Awareness Month
 
Logo and hashtag of Indigenous Disability Awareness MonthIndigenous Disability Awareness Month (IDAM) is recognized each November and officially proclaimed by the government of B.C. to highlight and celebrate the unique contributions First Nations, Métis and Inuit people with disabilities make to communities throughout the province. Created by the BC Aboriginal Disability Network Society (BCANDS) in 2015, the month also brings awareness to the barriers and challenges that Indigenous people with the disabilities and their families face.
 
Read a message from Ross Chilton, CLBC CEO, here.  You can also visit the Indigenous Relations page of the CLBC website here to learn how CLBC’s Indigenous Relations team is building relationships with Indigenous communities and helping individuals and families access culturally safe services. 
 
Join CLBC’s open board meeting on November 29

CLBC will be holding its next open board meeting from 9 AM to 12 PM (PST) on Wednesday, November 29. CLBC eligible individuals, families, service providers and members of the public are welcome to join remotely via the Microsoft Teams meeting platform. The meeting includes reports from the Chairs of CLBC’s Indigenous Advisory Committee and Provincial Advisory Committee.
 
To receive a link to join the meeting, email Padminee.Chundunsing@gov.bc.ca with your name and agency name (if applicable).
 
 Watch for your COVID-19 and flu vaccine invitation
 
Vaccination remains an effective way to protect people from severe illness and hospitalization due to COVID-19. It is important to stay up to date with COVID-19 booster shots, which help keep a high level of protection. Learn more about immunizations on the Government of B.C. website here.
 
Individuals supported by CLBC remain a priority to receive the COVID-19 vaccination. Invitations will be sent by email or text message to everyone who has registered to receive a COVID-19 immunization in B.C. The invite will have a direct link to book your COVID-19 and flu appointment online. These vaccines are free and available at pharmacies, health authority clinics and some primary care providers’ offices.
 
If you have questions about your COVID-19 immunization options, or need help booking an appointment, call 1-833-838-2323. The phone line is open from 7 AM to 7 PM every day, and 9 AM to 5 PM on statutory holidays. Translators are available. Telephone service for people who are deaf is available by calling 711 and Video Relay Services (VRS) sign language interpretation is free for people who are deaf, hard of hearing or speech-impaired.
  
Join the conversation about Community Inclusion Services
 
In October 2023, CLBC began a series of discussions with individuals, families, service providers and key community partners in remote, urban, and Indigenous communities to gather an understanding of people’s experiences, best practices for community inclusion programs, and what ideas people have for the future of these services. The purpose of this work is to identify best practices for community inclusion supports and recommendations for services and programs for people with diverse abilities in B.C.
 
For more information about this project and how to participate, visit the CLBC website here. You can also contact Fred Ford at 250-812-2221 or fred.ford@gov.bc.ca.
 
 Represent your community on CLBC’s Provincial Advisory Committee
 
The Community Living Authority Act requires CLBC’s Board of Directors to establish a Provincial Advisory Committee (PAC) made up of people and families served by CLBC. The PAC provides information and advice to the CLBC Board through its members who represent each of the 13 CLBC Community Councils.
 
The PAC meets in person four times each year and ensures two-way communication between Community Councils and the CLBC Board, highlighting both successes and concerns identified by Councils that have provincial implications for CLBC and the people it serves. You can listen to the experiences of PAC members on the CLBC website here
 
There are currently PAC vacancies from the Upper Fraser, South Central Okanagan, South Vancouver Island and North Region Community Councils.
 
To learn more about the role of PAC and how to volunteer on your local Community Council, contact the CLBC Community Engagement team at CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca.

Members of CLBC's Provincial Advisory Committee

 Recognizing International Day of Persons with Disabilities
 
Every year, December 3 marks United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities. This day is about promoting the rights and well-being of people with disabilities and raising awareness of the inclusion of people in all aspects of political, social, economic, and cultural life.
 Learn more about International Day of Persons with Disabilities Day here. CLBC and others will be sharing posts on Facebook and Twitter (or X), with the hashtag #IDPD2023.

 
Housing Central conference coming up in November

The annual Housing Central conference, hosted by the BC Non-Profit Housing Association (BCNPHA) and the Co-operative Housing Federation of BC (CHF BC), aims to strengthen and grow the community housing sector so all British Columbians have a safe, secure home they can afford.
 
From November 20 to 22, the conference will draw delegates from throughout B.C. and across Canada for three days of learning, networking and engaging with colleagues in the community housing sector.

CLBC is a proud sponsor of this event and will also be sharing information and connecting with attendees as an exhibitor. CLBC staff are involved in a number of sessions at the conference, and CEO Ross Chilton will give a short speech. CLBC will be sharing highlights from the conference on our Facebook and Twitter (or X) pages.

 
Self Advocacy Corner
 
 Camping out with TALK Northwest
 
TALK Northwest Society is one of the four Self Advocacy groups that received grant funding during the pandemic to help people stay safe and connected. As a way to celebrate connection to each other and the lands we live on, TALK Northwest members used the last of their grant funding to host a two-day Kispiox Advocates Camp Conference in September.  
“There were so many special moments shared. The morale was high, the group dynamics were amazing, and everyone was so respectful and encouraging to each other. Everyone raved about their experience and has dreams for a future campout conference event,” said camp leaders.

Read the full story here.

To learn more about TALK Northwest Self Advocacy group, email them at talknorthwest@gmail.com.

A group of self advocates stand and sit together for a group photo outdoors.

 Share your photo with CLBC and the Celebrate Diverse ABILITIES magazine
 
CLBC is looking for high resolution images that showcase the people we support living their best life in community. This might be a picture of you at work, hanging out with friends, at college/university, hosting a party, trying something new, enjoying your hobby, or even just relaxing at home. The top five photos selected will be featured in the next Celebrate Diverse ABILITIES magazine along with a short write-up about each photo. Authors will receive $100 for their photo and story or short write-up.
 
You might be wondering what we mean by high resolution. Please set your camera or phone’s picture quality to “High” or “Large” to capture high resolution pictures. (For any experienced photographers, photos should be at least 300dpi and at least 1000 pixels wide).
 
Do you have a photo you’d like to share with CLBC?  Email them to CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca
 
 Why don’t we talk about FASD?
 
Congratulations to Self Advocacy leader Michael Oswald from the CLBC North Shore Sunshine Coast Community Council who recently had his story on living with the effects of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) published by the Coast Reporter. In his article, “Why don’t we talk about FASD?”, Michael shares his own experiences and asks how we can all bring greater awareness to FASD to reduce the stigma around it.  

Read Michael’s story here.
 
 Join People First of Canada’s LGBTQIA2S+ Working Group
 
The logo of People First Canada.People First of Canada is a national organization representing people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. If you are a People First member and you identify as being LGBTQIA2S+, you are invited to apply for their new working group that meets monthly. For more information or to join the group, please send an email to monica@peoplefirstofcanada.ca.
 
Also, did you know there is a BC People First (BCPF) organization that is part of the international People First movement? BCPF has been the independent voice of self advocates in B.C. for over 40 years. The more members who join BCPF, the stronger the voice for self advocates will be. It’s free to join!
 
Learn more about BCPF and how to become a member here.

 Know your rights and responsibilities living in home sharing
 
Are you a self advocate who lives in home sharing? The Home Sharing Support Society of BC is hosting a self advocate-led presentation called “How do you advocate? What you need to know”. The virtual event takes place on Thursday, November 23 from 10 to 11:30 AM (PST).
 
Join the discussion to:Hear common concerns and challenges.
Connect and network with others in home sharing arrangements.
Learn how to advocate for yourself and access support.
Take part in the Question-and-Answer session.  
To register, visit the Home Sharing Support Society of BC website here.

 Staying Supported and Connected
 
 New Nidus website is now live
 
Nidus is a non-profit organization that provides education, support and assistance with personal planning and Representation Agreements. They have developed institutional expertise about the creation, use, and support around these important planning tools. Nidus has recently launched their new website at www.nidus.ca.
 
Check out the new Nidus website for:Information and Resources
Representation Agreement (and related) Forms
Events Calendar
And more…  
 Learn with NIDUS about Representation Agreements and what happens after death
 
With the support of CLBC, Nidus is presenting an information webinar focusing on Representation Agreement Section 7 (RA7) and what happens after death. This session will provide you with valuable insights, practical tips and real-life experiences. All are welcome to attend including services providers, family members, persons with disabilities and CLBC staff.
 
The webinar takes place Tuesday, November 21, from 12 to 1:30 PM (PST). Register for the webinar here.
 
 Is your family looking to hire support staff? Join this presentation
 
Support Worker Central (SWC) is a free, province-wide job board created for people with disabilities and their families who hire their own support staff. The site also shares guidance on hiring staff, your legal obligations, necessary paperwork, and other valuable information needed when becoming an employer. There are currently over 500 profiles of people looking for work on SWC.
 
Join the Family Support Institute for a virtual presentation on Wednesday, November 15 at 7:00 PM (PST) to learn more about how to access this pool of potential staff. During this presentation, you will learn how the job board works, how to post a job, the available resources to help you with hiring staff, as well as an opportunity to ask questions.
 
Register for the “Learn about Support Worker Central” presentation here.


 
 New accessible Human Rights resources available
 
BC’s Office of the Human Rights Commissioner (BCOHRC), together with the Human Rights Tribunal and the Human Rights Clinic at the Community Legal Assistance Society (CLAS), are launching a new set of resources designed to help people understand the system and know who to talk to.
 
Here are some of the new resources:B.C. Human Rights System web portal – A clear and concise overview of each part of B.C.’s human rights system. Visit www.bchumanrightssystem.ca.
 
Short animated videos – These videos introduce what human rights are, how they are protected, and how the human rights system works in B.C. Watch the videos here.
 
Additional resources – A directory of clinics, advocates and organizations offering human rights support, as well as printable handouts in multiple languages that provide information about the human rights system. Visit www.bchumanrightssystem.ca/additional-resources
 
 CLBC Community Councils



CLBC Community Councils are raising awareness about aging

Community Councils across the province are raising awareness on the topic of aging and helping to share information about planning supports available for people and families supported by CLBC who are getting older.
 
On October 11, the North Vancouver Sunshine Coast Council hosted a forum called “Plan for a Better Future”. Participants heard from a parent on her struggles, a self advocate caring for an aging parent, and from the Minister of Social Development and Poverty Reduction. Other speakers included CLBC’s manager of Service and Community Development, and representatives from the Family Support InstitutePlanned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN) BC and the Community Living Society.
 
Read the full story on the CLBC website here.
 
Help us by sharing these resources to support people and families as they age:Aging Resources – Community Living BC
PLAN Institute
Future Planning Tool
Access Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP)
Information on Personal Support Networks
 If you have any questions about CLBC aging resources, email CLBC.Health@gov.bc.ca.
 
 Volunteer on a CLBC Community Council
 
People who sit on CLBC Community Councils include individuals and families who receive support from CLBC, service provider partners and community allies. These volunteers care about creating culturally safe, accessible, and inclusive communities.
 
In partnership with CLBC, volunteers on Community Councils:Build relationships with community leaders to create a more inclusive B.C.
Connect individuals and their families to information, resources and each other.
Listen to the experience of people and families served by CLBC to make things better.
Take actions that lead to social change and inclusive communities for all people.  
All Councils are currently recruiting volunteers. Contact CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca to learn more.

 Upper Fraser and South Vancouver Island Community Councils hosting open houses in November
 
You are invited to attend these upcoming gatherings to learn how Councils are making a difference and find out ways to get involved:
 
Upper Fraser Council GatheringWhen: November 8 from 5:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Where: CLBC office at #201 – 2777 Gladwin Road in Abbotsford
RSVP: Alison.Lowe@gov.bc.ca
South Vancouver Island GatheringWhen: November 28, 2023, from 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Where: CLBC office at #410 – 29 Helmcken Road in Victoria
(There is also the option to join virtually. RSVP for access to the MS Teams link.)
RSVP: CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca
For more information, visit the CLBC Community Councils website here and/or contact the CLBC Community Engagement Team at CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca.
 
Stories and Celebration
 
 Widening Our World (WOW) Award recipients recognized
 
The recipients of the 2023 CLBC Widening Our World (WOW) Awards are being recognized with award presentation celebrations in their local communities for their inclusive hiring practices and workplaces.
 
We’re sharing photos and stories from these events at www.CommunityLivingBC.ca/WOW, where you can also learn more about this year’s recipients who were selected from an amazing field of nominees: Keith Larson – Redux Nutrition, Chilliwack
Bobbi Hunt – Mark’s Work Wearhouse, Abbotsford
Brendon Osborn – Cintas, Langley
Kylah Bryde – North Peace Leisure Pool, City of Fort St. John
 Reflecting on Community Inclusion Month
 
As Community Inclusion Month wrapped up last week, we want to highlight how important this time has been. It has been a month where we focus on embracing diversity and fostering a sense of belonging in our communities. Everyone has a part to play in building inclusion and we all benefit when there is opportunity for everyone to achieve their potential. There were many great Community Inclusion Month events held in communities across the province this year and we want to thank everyone who got involved, whether by joining events, organizing them or working with local governments to recognize this important time of recognition, celebration and awareness. Your efforts have helped create more welcoming and inclusive communities for all.
 
Visit CLBC’s Community Inclusion Month webpage here to find highlights from the month.

Many people stand side by side on a sidewalk to form an inclusion chain.
 
 Signing Off
 
Every November, Canadians recognize November 8 as Indigenous Veterans Day and November 11 as Remembrance Day. These days honour those who have served and continue to serve Canada during times of war, conflict and peace.

Read a statement recognizing today’s Indigenous Veteran’s Day from Premier David Eby, Murray Rankin, Minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, and Mitzi Dean, B.C.’s military liaison.
 
Self Advocate Net has created a page on their website here to share information and messages recognizing Remembrance Day.
 
Until next edition…

Community Inclusion Month

Greetings from CLBC,

For more than two decades, CLBC has proudly marked the occasion of Community Inclusion Month in October. This month allows us to honor the dedication of individuals, families, and community members who tirelessly work towards creating more inclusive communities and opportunities for all British Columbians, especially those with developmental disabilities.

Every year, CLBC joins the Province and Inclusion BC to identify a theme that helps build awareness about the importance of including people with developmental disabilities in all aspects of their communities. This year, the focus for the month is to build awareness about the importance of including people with developmental disabilities in their communities in all aspects of society including living independently, access to healthcare, employment, cultural activities, recreation, and sport.

You can read the government Community Inclusion Month proclamation here.

Remember, we all play a crucial role in creating a more inclusive society. Here are some things you can do:

  • Participate in Community Inclusion Month events that are taking place in your community.
     
  • Join us in recognizing Community Inclusion Month by sharing your support on social media. Use the hashtag #CommunityInclusionMonth to spread the message of inclusivity far and wide.
     
  • Let us know what’s happening in your community. You can let us know at CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca and we will help spread the word via our website and social media pages.
     
  • Visit CLBC’s Community Inclusion Month page here and stay connected with us throughout the month.
  • Share impactful stories, videos, and testimonials of individuals benefiting from inclusion with us. Reach out to CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca, and together we will amplify your efforts through our website and social media platforms.
     
  • During Community Inclusion Month, CLBC will be recognizing inclusion champions through our Widening Our World (WOW) awards. We look forward to announcing the winners in the coming days on our website here. Help us celebrate this year’s WOW Awards and the recipients as award presentations take place.

Every step we take forward together can make change. We thank all British Columbians for their support and contribution to fostering inclusive communities, places where everyone has possibilities and is welcomed.

Happy Community Inclusion Month 2023!

With warm regards,

Ross Chilton
CEO, Community Living BC

CLBC Update

Welcome to the September 2023 edition of CLBC’s Update for Individuals and Families. We hope you and your families have had a safe and happy summer. Our thoughts remain with everyone in our province who has been impacted by the wildfires.As we move into the fall, we look forward to once again sharing information, helpful resources and uplifting stories with you through this monthly Update.CLBC and Government NewsJoin CLBC’s September 20 open board meeting

CLBC will be holding its next open board meeting from 9am to 12pm on Wednesday, September 20. CLBC eligible individuals, families, service providers and members of the public are welcome to join remotely via the Microsoft Teams meeting platform.

You will hear project updates from CEO Ross Chilton on recruitment for our Board, a grant to an innovative new family group, a recent Board visit to the Gitxsan First Nation, our emergency housing supports trial, and CLBC’s partnership with Foundry.

The meeting also includes a presentation from John Stinson, VP of Service Delivery and Innovation, on the Re-imagining Community Inclusion commitment to improve collaboration with the Ministry of Health on topics like access to health systems and aging. The meeting includes reports from the Chairs of our Indigenous Advisory Committee and Provincial Advisory Committee.

To receive a link to join the meeting, send an email to padminee.chundunsing@gov.bc.ca along with your name and agency name (if applicable).


Recognizing National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt DayCLBC respectfully acknowledges the upcoming Day for Truth and Reconciliation on September 30 as a time of recognition to honour survivors, the lost children of residential schools, their families, and communities. In March of this year, the Province of B.C. passed legislation to make September 30 a statutory holiday. This gives more British Columbians the opportunity to get involved in advancing reconciliation by participating in local commemoration or education events, having important conversations with their families, friends and communities, and finding meaningful ways to learn more about our shared history.A photo of a beaded orange shirt necklace.Both the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation and Orange Shirt Day take place on September 30. Orange Shirt Day is an Indigenous-led grassroots commemorative day that encourages all Canadians to wear orange to honour the children who survived residential schools and remember those who did not.

The day was created based on the residential school experiences of the campaign’s founder, Phyllis Webstad, a Northern Secwepemc (Shuswap) from the Stswecem’c Xgat’tem First Nation.Learn more about the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation here and about Orange Shirt Day here, including events taking place and resources for learning about Indigenous history and culture in Canada.A graphic showing a narwhal (representing Inuit people) an eagle (representing First Nations people) and a beaded flower (representing Metis people).

 
Connect with CLBC’s Provincial Community Engagement Lead


A photo of Brita Hall, CLBC’s Provincial Community Engagement Lead“Hi, my name is Brita Hall and I would like to introduce myself as the CLBC Provincial Community Engagement Lead. I am very excited to start my new role leading community engagement initiatives that help CLBC listen to, learn from, and partner with the people and families we serve and the communities that support them. This includes supporting the leadership of our CLBC Editorial BoardProvincial Advisory Committee, and 13 Community Councils

Let’s connect! Are you a self advocate, family member, partner organization and/or member of the community working to strengthen inclusion and connection in your community? Please reach out and let us know what you’re up to so we can share with others. If you would like to know how to get involved in community engagement activities at CLBC, including contributing to this CLBC Update for Individuals and Families, email me at CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca. I’d love to hear from you!”


New L.I.F.E. SERVICE begins plans to expand in 2024

CLBC has targeted ten communities for this year’s expansion of the new L.I.F.E. service.  A proposal letter was sent in August 2023 to qualified service providers in ten identified areas: North Shore area (including North Vancouver, Sea to Sky, Squamish, Bella Coola, and Powell River); Burnaby; Mission; Surrey/Delta; Victoria; Nanaimo; Vernon; Trail; Kamloops; and Kitimat. These areas were identified with input from CLBC regions about service provider and CLBC staff readiness.

CLBC’s goal is to identify ten successful agencies by November 2023. The new services will begin development in January 2024.

You can speak to your CLBC facilitator to find out about availability of the L.I.F.E. service in your area. Even if the L.I.F.E. service is not yet available in your area, CLBC encourages you to make a formal request for it through your local CLBC office. This will help us keep track of the interest for the service to support finding new service providers to deliver it in your area.

Find more information on the L.I.F.E. service webpage here and you can also read Dalip’s story about accessing L.I.F.E. here.
Specific wording requested in applications for Criminal Record Check Employer Accounts

People who receive CLBC individualized funding – and hire staff with that funding – must have a Criminal Records Review Program (CRRP) Employer Account number to request criminal record checks for any staff they hire with the funding provided by CLBC.

Recently, the CRRP simplified the Employer Account application, and is asking that anyone who is receiving CLBC funding use specific wording in their application to streamline the processing time. You can find an example of a completed form with this specific wording and some additional supporting instructions on CLBC’s website here.

When applying for an Employer Account, it is also important to note the CRRP no longer requires:Proof someone is receiving at least 50% provincial fundingA letter from CLBC to prove a person is contracting with CLBC (in some circumstances a letter might still be requested. Your CLBC analyst can provide it)Photocopies of the applicant’s identificationCLBC has updated our Frequently Asked Questions document and the Drivers’ Abstract Checklist to reflect the CRRP’s recent changes.
Thank you for the WOW nominations!

The Widening Our World Awards logo.CLBC’s annual Widening Our World Awards (WOW) celebrate people in B.C. who are working to make our communities more inclusive of people of all abilities. This year, we focused on employment to celebrate and highlight the work of inclusive employers across the province.

Nominations closed last week on September 7, 2023. We are sending out a heartfelt thanks to everyone who took time from their busy days to submit a nomination for the 2023 WOW Awards. The evaluation committee is currently reviewing the nominations received to select this year’s recipients. We look forward to celebrating the recipients in their hometowns with friends, family, staff and service providers in October as part of Community Inclusion Month.

Stay tuned to www.CommunityLivingBC.ca/WOW for updates on this year’s recipients.


Moving, or thinking of moving? Learn more about CLBC’s Transfer PolicyWhen you choose to move to a new community in B.C., CLBC wants you to continue receiving the right services. CLBC’s Transfer Policy provides a clear understanding of what individuals and families should expect from CLBC when planning a move.With at least 90 days’ notice, we can carefully plan, help you understand the available services in different areas, and assist you in making informed decisions. Our goal is to minimize the possibility of service disruptions and ensure your needs are met in your new community.Here are the key steps for you to take if you are planning to move:Contact your CLBC facilitator or local CLBC office at least 90 days before you want to move.
 Your facilitator will let you know if your move is a ‘transfer’ and they will help plan with you so you can continue accessing CLBC services in your new community.Check the Transferring your CLBC Services page on CLBC’s website here for more information to help you better understand what to expect when transferring your CLBC services from one quality service area to another.

A graphic showing people loading furniture into a moving truck below the words "Thinking of moving to a new community?"


NextRide technology being expanded for BC Transit

A round green circle containing a graphic of the front of a transit bus.BC Transit is receiving nearly $17 million to expand its NextRide digital system for its province-wide bus fleet. NextRide technology enables added accessibility for passengers with onboard automatic voice announcements and digital visual displays for the next bus stop location.

“An upgraded NextRide will offer our customers real-time transit information about bus locations, route schedules and detours,” said Erinn Pinkerton, president and CEO of BC Transit, in a statement. “This modern technology helps riders better plan their travel, saving them time as they go about their day.”

Learn more about NextRide here.Self Advocacy Corner

BC People First presents on Language, Labels and Ableism
 
How does language harm and how does language help? Join BC People First (BCPF) for an upcoming panel presentation called Language, Labels, and Ableism.
 
Presenters who will be sharing their experiences include Margaux Wosk, Charlene Barney, Nicole Babor, Noel Anderson, Justin Albay and Jo-Anne Gauthier.
 
The presentation takes place virtually on Tuesday, September 26 from 3:00pm to 4:00pm (PDT).
 
 Register here by September 23 to receive the Zoom login information.
 
 
Join the People First Movement in British Columbia
 
The BC People First logoDo you want to learn more about self advocacy and your human rights? Do you want to meet new people or share your experiences to help others? Become a BCPF Member – it’s free.
 
BCPF is an independent non-profit society for people with intellectual or developmental disabilities and self advocates from across British Columbia. It is membership-based and volunteer-run by self advocates for self advocates. 
 
Learn more about the many ways BCPF members get involved here. Please email hello@bcpeoplefirst.com if you have any questions. 

 
Register for the 22nd Annual Self Advocacy Leadership Retreat in Mission
 
Join the next Self Advocacy Retreat in Mission, B.C. to learn more about advocacy, safety, rights, healthy relationships and how to become leaders in your own community.
 
The annual event takes places at the Camp Luther Retreat Centre at 9311 Shook Road from October 27 to 29, 2023. The price is $270 (including tax) per person, which includes two nights and three days accommodations, healthy meals, registration, all workshops and recreation.

Find full event details and registration instructions here.
 
If you have any questions, please contact Coordinator Gregg Schiller at 604-688-7001 or by e-mail at GreggSchiller@shaw.ca.
 
 
People Planning Together is coming to Kamloops
 
The Empowering Self Advocates to Take Action Co-operative (ESATTA) and Speaking Up for Self Advocacy Awareness (SUSA) Society are co-hosting People Planning Together in Kamloops on September 14 and 15.
 
People Planning Together is a two-day workshop for people with diverse abilities who want to take a lead in planning the life they want.
 
Find full event details for People Planning Together along with registration instructions here.

A poster promoting the People Planning Together event.

 Staying Supported and Connected

Let’s Talk about Connections!
 
CLBC’s Strategic Initiatives Advisors host a weekly virtual meetup called Let’s Get Together and Talk About Connections. You’re invited to join every Thursday at 12:00pm noon to hear about and share what’s happening around the province and in your own community. Learn more about this weekly event here.
 
To join, go to this Zoom link, then enter the passcode: CLBC. You can also join over the phone by calling 1-778-907-2071

A poster promoting the Connections event, showing the faces of the different presenters.
 

Emergency resources for people with disabilities
 
Prepared BC is British Columbia’s emergency preparedness education program serving the general public, local governments, Indigenous communities and schools. They offer resources like this plain language handbook for Emergency Preparedness for people with disabilities.
 
Follow Prepared BC on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram. For more information, or if you have any questions, please contact PreparedBC@gov.bc.ca.
 
 
Hang out with the Family Support Institute
 
The Family Support Institute of BC offers various Family Hang outs and Learning Explorations.Family Hang Outs are a safe space for families and caregivers to come together for support, inspiration and troubleshooting. Sessions are either themed or open for general conversation.
 Learning Explorations are free online sessions that offer families, individuals, and professionals the chance to learn, connect and share on a variety of topics.  Visit the FSI Calendar of events here for a list of upcoming hang outs and learning sessions.
 
Please note: All FSI Zoom sessions can be accessed by telephone. If you need assistance registering for any session, please call the FSI office at 1-800-441-5403.   

A graphic showing people standing around a speech bubble that says Join us for our Zoom hangout Tuesday group.
 
 
Understanding Home Sharing Contracts
 
A graphic of a house containing the word Home in many different languages.Home sharing is an arrangement where an adult lives in a person’s home and receives support and services based on their personal goals and needs. Home sharing providers and the adults who live with them enrich each others’ lives, and they share experiences and rely upon each other’s skills.
 
Home sharing services are offered in many ways. Some people live with a family, others live with a roommate or a couple, and some may live in a separate suite that is part of the home.
 
The Home Sharing Support Society BC is hosting a free webinar called Understanding Your Home Sharing Contract. The webinar takes place Wednesday, September 20 from 10am to 11:30am (PDT) and everyone from the home sharing community is invited to attend.
 
This event is an opportunity to gain valuable insights about home sharing contracts, and will feature a panel of experts discussing key topics as well as time for questions.
 
Find full details and register for Understanding Your Home Sharing Contract here.
 
 
Join the Burnaby Primary Care Network for the Fall 2023 virtual DocTalks Series 
 
The Burnaby Primary Care Network has been holding interactive webinars hosted by Burnaby doctors on different health related topics, so participants can have their questions answered. Attendees can join from any part of B.C. and all sessions are recorded and made available online. 
 
Topics for the upcoming Fall 2023 DocTalks series are:A-Typical: Learning how to support complex kids
Friday, September 15 from 12:00pm to 1:30pm (PDT)
 How to support ageing adults with disabilities… and when?
Friday, September 29 from 12:00pm to 1:30pm (PDT)
 Navigating medical and social supports for disabilities
Friday, October 13 from 12:00pm to 1:00pm (PDT)  Learn more and find all of the registration instructions here.

 CLBC Community Councils

Volunteer on a CLBC Community Council!

Do you care about building communities where everyone belongs? So do the volunteers on Community Councils!

Community Councils are run by volunteers who work with CLBC and community partners to support the inclusion, citizenship and full participation of people with developmental disabilities. Council members also play an important role in providing information and advice on CLBC projects and strategic plan goals.

Whether you want to explore becoming a member, join a Council meeting as a guest, or simply learn about what your local council is working on, our Community Engagement team can help you connect. Email CLBC.Connect@gov.bc.ca to get involved.

Visit our website here for more information on CLBC Community Councils


Plan for a Better Future with the North Shore Sunshine Coast Community Council

An invitation for the Plan for a Better Future event.Join the North Shore Sunshine Coast Community Council and Community Living Society for the upcoming presentation Plan for a Better Future – Aging Parents and Caregivers. This presentation will help parents and caregivers understand the power of planning in key areas for their loved one with a disability and think about ways to go from feeling unprepared to having peace of mind about the future. Speakers include Community Living BC, Community Living Society, Family Support Institute and PLAN BC. There will be refreshments and games.

The event takes place Wednesday, October 11 from 10:00am to 2:30pm at Lynn Valley Town Centre in North Vancouver. Click here to see the invitation with full details.

Seating is limited so anyone interested in attending is encourages to RSVP by September 30 to Rhea.Miguel@gov.bc.ca.
 
Stories and Celebration

September is Disability Employment Month
 
A photo of a man in a wheelchair working at a nursery with the words Disability Employment Month.The Province of B.C. has again proclaimed September as Disability Employment Month. This month celebrates the significant contributions of people with disabilities and employers who demonstrate inclusion and leadership. The proclamation also affirms B.C.’s commitment to working with employers to recruit, retain and promote people with disabilities in their workplaces.

You can read the official proclamation here and search for the hashtag #DisabilityEmploymentMonth on social media to see posts and updates being shared throughout September.

Thank you to Inclusion BC who have created a webpage for employers and businesses to learn more about inclusive hiring including this video highlighting the importance of inclusive employment for people with developmental disabilities. Please share it with your networks to promote and celebrate Disability Employment Awareness Month.


Recognizing Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Prevention and Support Month

A graphic of red shoes with the words Red Shoes Rock! in recognition of FASD Awareness Day.September is Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Prevention and Support Month in B.C. and International FASD Awareness Day took place this past Saturday, September 9. This day and month are recognized to highlight the importance of not drinking alcohol for the full nine months of pregnancy, as well as to improve the prevention of FASD and increase access to diagnosis and support.

The theme for this year’s FASD Awareness Month is Uniting our Strengths: Finding Solutions TogetherRead a statement from Hon. Mitzi Dean, Minister of Children and Family Development, here and you can also ​learn more about FASD Awareness Month here. Follow the ​hashtag #FASDMonth2023 to see how community members, partners and organizations are working together to improve policy, practice, and awareness of FASD. 

On September 9, and throughout FASD Awareness month, many people wear red shoes to raise awareness and start conversations about FASD. Learn more about the Red Shoes Rock campaign here.
 

Signing off  
 
We’re now just over two weeks away from Community Inclusion Month. Every October in B.C., Community Inclusion Month celebrates the valuable contributions that people with developmental disabilities make and recognizes the importance of communities where everyone is included. 

Stay tuned to CLBC’s Community Inclusion Month webpage here as October approaches and during the month as we will be sharing events, stories, community proclamations and information and also announcing the recipients of CLBC’s 2023 Widening Our World (WOW) Awards.

Have an event, story or other highlight you’d like to share? Send an email to CLBCInfo@gov.bc.ca and let us know.

A photo of a young man named Jacob smiling and sitting on a sofa.As we sign off this edition, we’d like to share a quote from Jacob, who lives on Gitxsan Lax ‘yip and receives services from Hazelton Community Services. 

Jacob tells us why supports in the community, and community inclusion, are so important:  

“I never used to really leave my house much or talk to people, but now my worker cracked me right open like a nut.”
 
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