Your Gifts Make Stories Happen
This has been an extraordinary year, one that has asked us all to respond in extraordinary ways. When the pandemic brought an abrupt end to face-to-face gatherings, Communitas’ day services were deeply impacted. Many of the people we serve who live with developmental disabilities, mental health challenges, or acquired brain injury rely on these services to keep them connected to their community.
Knowing this, our staff and the people we serve have responded in myriad creative ways to ensure that they continue to live an abundant life.
Being Safe –Choices and Connections (CAC) is Communitas’ longest running, donor and participant funded day service. At CAC, participants regularly experience Dr. Bonnie Henry’s encouragement to “be kind, be calm, be safe.” CAC provides opportunities to develop meaningful relationships with peers, where kindness and a sense of calm are important. This spring, thanks to a grant from the Abbotsford Community Foundation, participants learned how to be safe by learning how to sanitize, how to properly wear a mask, and what it means to be socially distanced. Claudette Iverson, who manages CAC, says we are all in this together. “We are encouraged daily by the joy, love and patience that participants have and the grace they show in this season of change.”
Focus on Happiness – Preparing for an art show with multiple artists in the midst of a pandemic has been a challenge but participants in our Brain Injury Drop-In services have met this with courage and creativity. Art classes were held on-line or in a large, ventilated, socially-distanced meeting room. Their completed works are now in an exhibit at The Reach Gallery Museum Abbotsford titled “Happiness.” Esther Tremblay who coordinates the Drop-In in Chilliwack says the experience has had a deep impact on participaints: “They use words like ‘connection’, ‘hope’, and ‘support’ as they talk about building their self-confidence and self-esteem,” she says.
Going the extra mile – Miles is part of our Community Inclusion service on Vancouver Island. When COVID suspended many of his regular activities, Miles decided to use his time to clean up his neighbourhood, picking up litter along the road. His caregivers were so impressed with his dedication and the impact he has had on the environment, that they nominated him for the Habitat Protection Stewardship Award given by the city of Campbell River. Miles received this award earlier this year. While he is grateful for the recognition, he receives the most satisfaction from caring for the earth. “I encourage other people to clean more of the environment, they will find it rewarding,” he says.
Your Gifts Make This Possible
Our Stories page is filled with inspiring tales of resilience and courage in the face of the challenges we are all facing. Your support for Communitas makes these stories possible. Whether it is supporting someone who lives in one of Communitas’ homes or someone who takes part in a day program, whether it is supporting someone who lives with developmental disabilities, mental health challenges or acquired brain injury, Communitas is committed to safe, person-centred care, providing abundant life for all abilities. Your gifts make a difference.
One Gift, Twice the Impact!
This Christmas, your gift to Communitas is a gift that gives twice, thanks to the matching gifts of these champions: Fraserway RV, Honda Way, Vancity, and Westland Insurance . Every dollar you give is matched up to $40,000 making it possible for us to raise up to $80,000 this Christmas.
Your gift today ensures that the people we serve live a rich and full life in a safe, healthy, loving environment. It ensures that there will be many more inspiring stories ahead. Will you help us reach our goal? Give a gift today!