June 4, 2014
Posted in: Uncategorized
May is Community Living month in Parry Sound and it was full of interesting events, hard work and lots of community spirit. Community Living staff, family and representatives from the local Ministry of Natural Resources watched, with Mad Hatter’s coffee in hand, as Jamie McGarvey, Parry Sound’s Mayor, raised the flag on the first day of May. It was a rainy, cool day but the bright white Community Living flag flapped proudly in front of the Parry Sound Town Office building all month long.
On May 15th local business people teed off at Rocky Crest Golf Club raising funds for people in the Parry Sound district who have a developmental disability. The spirit of this beautifully run event generated good will, financial support and a solid sense of how working together promotes a fully inclusive community.
At the start of 2014, Community Living Parry Sound began a process of strategic planning for the future of the organization. With a well written and thoughtful plan in hand, CLPS invited all stakeholders (anyone from the community) to attend one of 2 focus groups to discuss the plan and offer thoughts and suggestions to make it even more relevant and on target. The meetings were ‘sold out’ and ideas flowed from participants with the clear intent to help and were received by planners with open minds. The new 3 year CLPS Strategic Plan reflects the minds and hearts of the people who drive it, the people who help run it and the people directly affected by where it is going.
One hundred people, a full house, gathered for a buffet breakfast donated by Wellington’s on James Street on May 27th. The Breakfast with the Mayor event was a great celebration of the efforts of; direct support workers, the management team, Board members, people supported by CLPS, volunteers, families, business owners and community members. Doug Cartan, advocate for people with developmental disabilities delivered a meaningful commentary on what an inclusive community looks like and introduced Rebecca Jones’s new video entitled “Standing Just like You”. The video launch at the Breakfast for the Mayor was a dream come true for Becky who was all smiles as others who viewed her honest story were moved to tears.
The days of May helped people living in our community. The term “mayday” derives from the French “m’aidez” pronounced “mayday” and means “help me”. Thank you Parry Sound district for responding to the CLPS mayday call and coming out to make Community Living Month 2014 fruitful and fun.