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Community Living Brant is committed to providing supports and services to meet the diverse developmental needs of people within the community.

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Hot Topics

Community Living Brant’s Flag Raising, Celebrates

Community Living Month!

On Monday, May 11th, Mayor Chris Friel joined Grace Grantham to raise a Community Living Flag at City Hall in honour of Community Living Month.

Mayor Friel read a proclamation declaring that the City of Brantford recognizes that the month of May to be Community Living Month.

Community Living Brant provides a variety of services for over 350 people with intellectual disabilities in Brantford and Brant County.

Michael Kendrick

Optimal Individual Service Design

Community Living Brant was honoured to have Michael Kendrick teach his intensive Optimal Individual Service Design course for our community.  Michael has conducted this training over 50 times around the world.   This was a fabulous learning opportunity in understanding how to change our view of what services and supports can look like for people in order for them to have full, rich live.   Participant had a combination of learning and practical experience.   Staff teams working very closely with a person receiving supports and their natural support network to develop an individual proposal.   As well, Michael Kendrick brought expertise from other agencies to share their learning and experiences in changing how they delivered services.  Our guests included: Susan Stanfield from Spectrum Society for Community Living in Vancouver, Mary Kealy previous CEO of Clare Services, Ireland and Janet Klees formerly of the family-governed Deohaeko Support Network  in Pickering.  The two weeks of training was an exceptional learning opportunity for our whole community!


Brantford's Mark Stewart helps show the Dragons' Den Jim Treliving just how easy it is to set up the Eznet, an invention of his uncle, Tom Stewart.(Submitted Photo)

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Community Living Brant again welcomed David Pitonyak in January to spend time with families, Board, and staff. Conversations included discussion about transition to adulthood for young people who experience autism, the Importance of Belonging, and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.  If you would like to learn more about David’s work and access his resources, please visit his website at www.dimagine.com

Merry Mat Makers!

We, at Dunn Enterprise, have been assisting the “Merry Mat Makers” of Harmony United Church to make sleeping mats out of milk bags for children in Third world countries.  We are helping the ladies by laying the bags flat and cutting them in three places to create thick strips that are next looped into long chain. These chains are weaved on large custom wooden frames on legs. The frames have nails to help hold the mat in place it is weaved. The ladies meet once a week and work on these. The Merry Mat Makers were so happy to have our help they sent a thank you letter and some cookies to share. The cutting and smoothing of the milk bags take a considerable amount of time and patience.  It is very helpful to have this process done for the ladies so they can produce more mats. We hope in the future we can have some people volunteer for other steps of the process. So far we have delivered two large shipments of cut milk bags and are looking forward to completing the 3rd batch. It takes approximately 500 milk bags to make one sleeping mat. That is 1000 of our strips. We have a completed mat on display in the workshop and a bulletin board with some more information. Clean & flattened milk bag donations are appreciated.

Hallowe’en Dance


R.E.A.C.H. Out, the Self Advocate Committee of Community Living Brant enthusiastically hosted a Hallowe’en Dance on Friday October 17, 2014 at the Dunsdon Legion.  This year’s dance was extra special because not only did we have a DJ playing music; we also had a live band.  Our own Jim Hladish brought along his band, The Dusty Dads, to entertain the crowd.  About 125 people attended the event and, by all accounts, had a great time.  We are happy to announce that we raised $580.00 that we will be using to help offset costs at this year’s Community Living Brant Christmas Dinner and Dance.  Many, many thanks to everyone who helped out to make this event the success it was!

My Life My Plan Interactive Workshop

On October 27, 2014, REACH Out Self Advocates hosted an interactive workshop facilitated by self advocates from Voices Unlimited (Norfolk Association for Community Living and Community Living Access Support Services) entitled My Life My Plan.  18 self advocates from Community Living Brant participated in the workshop.  My Life My Plan is facilitated entirely by self advocates with staff playing no active role in the workshop.  This was an exciting opportunity for self advocates to discuss all aspects of the process of planning with their peers.  This workshop was very well received by participants and we hope to offer it again in the future.

Resource Room Opens


October 1, 2014 marked the grand opening of the new Resource Room at the Dunn Building.  The Resource Room, organized and maintained by R.E.A.C.H. Out Self Advocates,  is a quiet, private place for people to look at and take information about a wide variety of topics including:  health and well being, safety, abuse, rights and community services and events.  The Resource Room is located just inside the back door of the Dunn – take a moment the next time you are at the Dunn and check out this new resource!


Brantford Athletes Prevail at Special Olympics National Summer Games

Betty Farr,  Arlene House and Christine Wilson

Local athletes Betty Farr, Arlene House, Christine Wilson and Adam Princz attended the Special Olympics National Summer Games in Vancouver, British Columbia from July 8 – 12, 2014.  Betty and Arlene competed in Powerlifting, Christine competed in Swimming and Adam competed in Track and Field.

Betty received 4 Gold medals for her weight category:  Squat, Bench, Deadlift and Overall Total and was honoured with the prestigious Best Female Lifter Overall title.  Arlene received 4 Gold medals for her weight category:  Squat, Bench, Deadlift and Overall Total.  Christine received 1 Gold medal for Relay and received 4th in 100 M Backstroke, 5th in 25 M Freestyle and 6th place finishes in both 100 M Individual Medley and 200 M Individual Medley.  Adam received a Gold medal for the 400 M run, Bronze medal for the 100 M run and 2 – 6th place finishes in the 200M run and Shot Put.  We are so very proud of these talented athletes and have our fingers crossed that they will be chosen to attend the Special Olympics World Games to be held in Los Angeles, California in 2015.

R.E.A.C.H. Out Donates Proceeds from Wrestlemania Movie Night

In early April of 2014, R.E.A.C.H. Out self-advocates held a Wrestlemania Movie Night to raise funds for local charities.  We are pleased to announce that we made $140.00 from that night.  It was decided that we would donate half of the funds raised to the Canadian Cancer Society and the other half of the funds raised to the Brantford SPCA.  R.E.A.C.H. Out President, Diane Jones and Vice President, Bruce Jones recently visited the offices of the Canadian Cancer Society and the SPCA to present the donations.

Red Sox Game

On June 18th six of us attended a Brantford Red Sox Game. The best part about attending this event was that the tickets were complimentary. They also included a free ball park hotdog. 

Many people in the Supported Living Program (S.L.) live on a fixed income - ODSP being mostly the sole source of money.  In order to plan for a game and a meal out, many people who receive support from S.L. would have to budget for a few months. Having a "freebee" night and not worrying about the financial strain, is a great night for us. The added bonus is hanging with people who are really friends. We brought S.L. staff Steve Csordas along too as he coordinated and made sure we all got home at midnight.

We sent a card to Amber Scott, General Manager at Fastenal saying thank you! Kim Walsh from Community Relations delivered the card and told a little bit about S.L. Program.  We were ecstatic when Kim came back and presented us with 6 more tickets to take in another game.  Another night planned for the end of July to hopefully cheer on the Red Sox into the playoffs.

Many thanks to Amber and Kim for directing the tickets our way!

Jason Richardson, Terry Yamauchi, Bruce Jones, Joel McCreery, Mike Taverner and Steve Csordas

Community Day with the Blue Jays

Community Living Day with the Toronto Blue Jays was Saturday May 31, 2014 and 70 Blue Jays fans from Community Living Brant enthusiastically attended the game.  One such enthusiastic Jays fan, Mr. David Park, celebrated his 75birthday at the game.  To mark this special event, ambassadors from the Blue Jays visited David at his seat, sang “Happy Birthday” to him and presented him with a birthday button.  The seats were excellent, the weather was perfect and the Blue Jays won the game!!  Everyone is looking forward to attending Community Living Day with the Blue Jays again in 2015.

Provincial Election 2014

Health Matters Video Conference

On May 31, 2014, Diane Richardson and Donna Blackmore had the unique opportunity to act as co-presenters, along with Tom Archer from Southern Network of Specialized Care, at a Video Conference called Health Matters Brant.  The Health Matters program was offered to people supported at Community Living Brant from January – March 2013.  Participants in the program learned ways to make positive lifestyle changes to increase overall health and well being.  At the video conference, Tom and Donna discussed Health Matters curriculum and objectives while Diane, as a program participant, discussed positive changes she has made in her life as a result of taking the course. This video conference was viewed by people at 47 different video conferencing sights around Ontario.  At the end of the video conference Diana was able to “video” talk to self advocates in Thunder Bay and in Ottawa – a new experience which she thoroughly enjoyed.

Donna, Diana & Tom

Community Living Brant’s Flag Raising, Celebrates Community Living Month!

On Monday, May 12th, Mayor Chris Friel joined Brent McEachern to raise a Community Living Flag at City Hall in honour of Community Living Month. Mayor Friel read a proclamation declaring that the City of Brantford recognizes that the month of May to be Community Living Month.

Community Living Brant provides a variety of services for over 350 people with developmental disabilities in Brantford and Brant County.

Brandon and SonjaEmergency Preparedness Training


On May 5, 2014, to kick off NAOSH (North American Occupational Safety and Health) Week, members of the Community Living Brant Joint Occupational Health and Safety Committee and the Basic Assurances Group - Safety, hosted an educational seminar for people supported about preparing for emergencies.  Participants were offered a fun and interactive learning presentation and each person received an emergency preparedness starter kit.  This training will be offered on a yearly basis. 

Pancake Supper a Success!

R.E.A.C.H. Out, the Self Advocate Committee of Community Living Brant held its second annual Pancake Supper on Shrove Tuesday, March 4, 2014.  The event was held at the Moose Lodge, 145 West Street in Brantford.  Despite snowy and cold weather, approximately 100 people attended the event and enjoyed a delicious supper of pancakes, sausages, bacon, juice, coffee and tea and cupcakes for dessert.  We are very pleased to announce that we made over $300.00 from this event.  Sincere thanks to everyone who assisted us to make this event a success!! 

See you next year – Tuesday February 17, 2015.

Allison Gupta; Laurier student and David MuellerBest Buddies Program


“When I first joined the Best Buddies program at Laurier Brantford, I didn’t know what to expect.  I was so nervous the first time I met my Buddy, David.  I was so worried that he wouldn’t like me.  Turns out, I had nothing to be concerned about. 

David has been a wonderful friend to me over the past three years and getting to hang out with him has been an absolute blast! Continue. 

Betty Farr, Diane Richardson and Gary Kusch

Spread the Word to End the Word

Members of R.E.A.C.H. Out, the Self Advocate Committee of Community Living Brant were invited to Greenbrier School to talk to students about the “R” word and using respectful language.  Betty Farr, Diane Richardson and Gary Kusch all shared personal stories about their experiences with the “R” word.  The students had the opportunity to watch the “R” word video that R.E.A.C.H. Out and friends made in 2012 and to participate in several fun and interactive activities that promote education about the negative effects of the “R” word.  Thanks to Ellen Banbury, a teacher at Greenbrier, for the invitation to talk to students at the school.

The 2013 Community Living Brant Christmas Dinner and Dance was held on Thursday, December 5, 2013.  This was the last major event celebrating the 60 Anniversary of the agency. 275 people experienced an awesome evening with Celtic music, a delicious turkey dinner and dancing.  Not to mention fun, fun, fun!! Thanks to everyone who helped make this evening a great success!!


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