Volunteering – Helping CL Access During COVID-19

Friends in our Community:

Community Living Access (CLAccess) and Norfolk Association for Community Living (NACL) are two local not-for-profit service providers who both provide support to adults with developmental disabilities in Norfolk County.  Although we are different organizations, we have always worked closely together in many ways and operate with mutual respect for each other.  

Both NACL and CLAccess believe that all persons live in a state of dignity and have the opportunity to participate in their communities.  NACL has been promoting and supporting the inclusion of people with developmental disabilities in all aspects of community life since 1953.  CLAccess vision is a community where every person lives with dignity, is valued and enjoys a full life.  

We need help.
Our staff have been working tirelessly since the pandemic began in the homes of people we support every hour of the day, every day of the year.

Covid-19 has added many additional challenges.

 As with everyone, COVID-19 has affected the lives of the people we support, their families and our staff that provide that support. 

Both organizations are currently experiencing outbreaks of Covid-19 in some homes.  We have a temporary need for help as many of our staff can’t work due to waiting for COVID test results, isolation for positive cases, needing to stay home due to school closures and family obligations…  The staff left working are already tired and still working extended hours and days, some with little rest.

 Following are a few ideas on how you can help:

  1. In home support – our biggest need is temporary help in people’s homes, to help with our staffing crisis.  Anyone interested would be paired with a staff member and provided all of the necessary training and personal protective equipment to maintain safety.  Our staff could use help with cleaning, laundry, meal preparation, visiting and spending time with people supported, redirecting people supported in the home to self isolate in a private area of their home.
  2. Out of home support – eg. grocery shopping, running errands
  3. Virtual support – eg. Zoom calls or phone calls with the people we support to provide some outside social interaction

Anyone interested in helping or learning more can contact Bruce Robinson at Community Living Access at (519) 426 0007 Ext. 112 or email at hr@communitylivingaccess.ca

Bruce will work with both organizations to see where the needs are and match any volunteers with either Norfolk Association for Community Living (NACL) or Community Living Access.

Thank you so much for considering this request.

Patricia Morris, Executive Director Community Living Access

Stella Barker, Executive Director Norfolk Association for Community Living

And so it is…. February edition

Kevin Rockefeller met with new Town Counsellor Ryan Taylor. Q: “So first I want to say Congratulations on becoming a Ward 5 Counsellor” Are you the youngest counselor in this area? A: “I am the youngest councilor sitting on council at this time, I am 25 yrs. old.” Q: What made you run for council?” A: “It’s something I have always been interested since I was in high school. One of my teachers just recently remembers me wanting this position even back then.” I am interested in government.” Q: “How would you like to see this town improved and revitalize the down town core? A: “I would like to see the downtown core come back to life! It will be a lengthy process. I have to see what I can do to attract people back downtown and work with the current store owners to revitalize downtown. I am currently working with fellow counsellor Ian Rabbitts on a downtown revitalization working group. I am doing fact finding missions with the county staff and the public to see what this town can look like.” Q:” How do you feel about the legalization of Marijuana? A: “As a whole, I feel it is a good thing for this country; there are so many people in prison for nonviolent crimes. It would be beneficial for shops in Simcoe, nice to see local entrepreneurs. Currently it is done with a lottery style license. The government will be making announcements shortly on who the successful lottery winners are. Q:”What are your thoughts on the building of Indwell in the old Norfolk Hotel? A:”Indwell for downtown is amazing! I can already see a big turnaround in the atmosphere downtown. Indwell is a great community partner and I hope to work with them again in the future. Q:”What do you do when you are not busy being on town council? A:” I am an Optician working for my family’s Optical business, J Daniels Optical in Simcoe. I spend the majority of my time there. I enjoy going downtown to different coffee shops, meeting new people. I also enjoy reading political books. Q:” Are you enjoying being a councilor so far and where can I go watch the town council meetings. A:” I am loving it so far and I am looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish as a group. If you are interested, the town council meetings are every Tuesday at Town Hall from 3pm-9pm. It can go shorter or longer depending on how the meeting is going. There is a public calendar on the Norfolk County website for more information. Norfolkcounty.ca Thank you Ryan for your time with this interview. It is good to know a councilor personally in case I have any issues. Good luck in your future. Your welcome Kevin, my pleasure!


Toolbox for Change – David Pitonyak

David Pitonyak Presents “Toolbox for Change”

Reclaiming Purpose, Joy and Commitment in the Helping Profession

Responding to an invitation from Community Living Access; on Wednesday April 3rd over 150 individuals representing over 13 (thirteen) Developmental Services Agencies across southern Ontario descended upon our wonderful town Simcoe ON in Norfolk County to be inspired, to be enlighten and to embrace the principles of Reclaiming Purpose, Joy and Commitment in our careers and lives.

In an ever increasingly complex world of daily demands, high expectations, pressure to be available to deal with ‘matters of consequences’ 24/7, our individual self and our personal JOY can become lost or intertwined with the pressures of work, our daily routines and myriad of complex relationships.  This timely and universal topic is a challenge we ALL face daily regardless of one’s profession, calling in life, age, status and abilities.  In short, if left unchecked and not nurtured, it erodes and steals our JOY and, it reduces our ability to interface with life, tarnishing our dreams, purpose, and satisfaction.  

Armed with his “Toolbox for Change” David took us on a journey, a journey on why each of us should make JOY a GOAL, our primary goal!  He masterfully connected the dots so to speak, on how our relationships, our work, and our other life goals can be much more difficult to achieve if we do not afford time to our individual self, our own discovery where our joy lives within us.

David’s storytelling, and everyday examples on how to take the time to discover the joy that is unique to each of us, were practical and simple.  David also spoke at great length about isolation and loneliness.  People need to be socially connected. He was passionate about the importance of relationships on all levels and cautioned that it may seem like people aren’t lonely because there are people around but that does not mean they are connected.  Our day with David was not only inspiring, thought provoking and practical; he showed us how this approach to self-joy, impacts on others, our job and the people we love.  He believes you must treat yourself as good as the guest who comes into your home. 

Special thanks to the organizing committee – Val Kelly, Anna Jo Giles, Kandice Gaspar, Kim Slavinsky and Cheri Emerson – for their hard work to make this day such a success!

For more information on Dr. David Pitonyak’s work visit www.dimagine.com