board of directors
We are still living with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic but have managed to find ways to continue to successfully deliver our services in a safe manner.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I would like to extend my gratitude to our amazing management team and staff at NSDRC (North Shore Disability Resource Centre) who have been remarkable and resilient so that we could serve the North Shore’s most vulnerable individuals. It has been emotionally tough on everyone, and they adapted as needed to keep things moving forward.
The Board has great confidence in our Executive Director, Jessica Neville and senior executive who have shown great leadership during this time. We are very appreciative of all their work and care for not only our staff but everyone who has accessed our services and programs. It is especially important as a non-profit organization that we can be there to support our community especially during these difficult times.
We are excited to launch our new Strategic Plan, showcase our Multi-Sensory Van as well as our new housing opportunities. We hope everything will return to normal so that we can build upon our services and programs for community members and new partnerships. Thank you to the North Shore community for your continued trust and support for NSDRC.
President, Board of Directors
If you would prefer, you may download a PDF version of this annual report by clicking this link.
our executive director
As I reflect on not only this past year, but the last two years, I continue to be awed by what our team has accomplished during a global pandemic and subsequent return to a pre-pandemic way of being. Over the course of the last two years, we have continued to see the resilience of the people we support and their families and the extraordinary commitment of our staff.
Community-based programming for infants, children, teens and adults has returned to in-person programming, while continuing to meet the needs of some of our community by providing virtual services and programs where indicated. Significant time was spent by the Children and Youth team to review and revamp programming and the changes have been met with great excitement by those in receipt of services.
Our Community Housing and Inclusion Program (CHIP) staff have remained dedicated to providing essential services over the course of the pandemic and have been thrilled to once again accompany those we support out to broad range of community events. The CHIP staff and management have remained a constant in the lives of the NSDRC participants and I know I speak for all our stakeholders in extending my continued gratitude to the entire team.
Samples of STAGE participants creativity, learning and fundraising efforts
NSDRC Head Office Renovations Completed in August 2022
PLANNING FOR CONTINUED CHANGE
As the world adapted to living with COVID-19, the important work of the board continued. With support from the staff team, the board was able to finalize and roll out a new three-year strategic plan which is already well underway. Just some of the highlights to date include:
- Outstanding support to infants and their families on the North Shore.
- Refreshed children and teen programming.
- Expansion of the STAGE program through securement of additional funding.
- A renewed commitment to exploring approaches to ensuring affordable, accessible housing.
- Renovation of our Mountain Highway office to ensure accessibility for all.
- The creation of a new role at the NSDRC, Manager of Communications and Partnerships.
As is often the case, with change comes the time to say goodbye to some of our colleagues as we welcome others aboard. We thank Dave Umbach for his long-standing commitment to the NSDRC wearing several different hats over many years. We also say goodbye to Susan Hokanson following her over two decades at the NSDRC. Sue’s commitment to all-things NSDRC will be missed. They have both left indelible marks on the association and we are so grateful for their contributions. At the same time we welcome Teri Taylor to the position of Manager of Communications and Partnerships. If you are interested in learning about how you can support or partner with the NSDRC, Teri can be reached at email@example.com.
Thank you to the senior management team: Kathleen Jessop, Director of Community-Based Services; Kim Miles, Director of Community Housing and Inclusion Program; and Igor Dobrokhotov, Finance Manager, for their ongoing commitment, creativity and enthusiasm Finally, thank you to the Board of Directors, who continue to be instrumental in setting course for the NSDRC.
LET’S CONTINUE TO CONNECT
Please continue to subscribe to our newsletters and on social media, and don’t hesitate to reach out with questions or get involved. We look forward to hearing from you and continuing to work in partnership in creating a “community for all.”
Jessica Neville, MEd
Thank you to our funding partners
community housing and inclusion program services
After 15 years of strong leadership, we say goodbye to David Hicks, who has retired and is moving back to New Brunswick with his partner. Dave did amazing work with children, families and staff at Quinton Place, Eagles Nest and Chamberlain and he is leaving a big pair of shoes to fill. The CHIP (Community Housing and Inclusion Program) team wants to thank you, David. You will be missed very much by everyone you have supported in your time here at the NSDRC. We wish you safe travels and a grand adventure. If you are ever back in BC, please drop in and say hello.
I am pleased to announce the arrival of two new Community Housing and Inclusion Program Managers this year; Cathy Verge, the Program Manager at Shone Road, who joined us in November 2021 and Gavin Riedy, the Program Manager at Eagles Nest and Chamberlain, who joined us in February 2022. Both managers have settled in very well and have been supported by the rest of the CHIP team: Henrieta Bezurova at Kerrstead Place, Fred Eiserman at Wilding Way and Nancy Greene Way, Neelam Malik at Quinton Place, Trisha Marinakis managing all 5 of our Independent Living Program Homes and Rose Powell at Loraine House.
The combined total number of 117 NSDRC years of experience in this group is remarkable, offering plenty of knowledge and experience to share with our two new additions. Thank you to all the Program Managers. You are an extraordinary team and I appreciate each of you for all that you have to offer.
The Community Housing and Inclusion Program team has continued to show up every day for the past two years during an extremely stressful time for yourselves and your families. With your diligence in maintaining a healthy and safe work environment, you have remained committed to the vulnerable individuals in the CHIP program. We have weathered this pandemic and I cannot thank you enough for your commitment to the participants, their families, your co-workers, and your management team.
The CHIP staff continue to implement Covid-19 protocols, while supporting individuals to get back out into the community and doing the activities they most enjoy. Staff have started to plan participant vacations again as well as going to concerts, sporting events, and enjoying the outdoor spaces, shops, and services of the North Shore.
Thanks to the hard work of the CHIP line staff and program managers, the NSDRC remains one of the organization of choice for families and funders.
NSDRC participant and family member at the Lynn Valley Parade
ADULT SUPPORT LIVING PROGRAM
The NSDRC Adult Supported Living Program provided 19 individuals with support in 2021-2022. Core funding provided by Community Living BC (CLBC) Services include.
- 23,566 hours of community inclusion staffing support to assist each individual to live as full as a life possible.
- 72,862 hours of community housing staffing support to assist with all aspects of daily living activities, resulting in an annual total of 96,428 hours of support.
The NSDRC is proud to be supporting two more adults in our Community Housing and Inclusion – Supported Living program over the 2021-2022 year. We are happy to report that both individuals are thriving in their new environments and enjoying an active and healthy lifestyle in their home community. Core funding is provided by Community Living BC (CLBC)
CHILDREN SUPPORTED LIVING PROGRAM
Quinton Place provided 19,185 hours of staffing support to four children within our group home with full-time daily support which included daytime at home school support during the ongoing pandemic. Core funding provided by Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD).
Eagles Nest provided one young man with over 2000 hours to assist with living in the community and support for his final year of school and Community Housing and Inclusion support. Core funding provided by Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD).
ADULT INDEPENDENT LIVING PROGRAM
The Adult Independent Living Program provided 19 individuals with:
- 22,564 hours of staff support.
- Core funding provided by Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH).
Mill House four One-Bedroom Apartments:
Mill House has been operational for over five years. All four individuals continue to enjoy living and thriving in their homes and appreciate the opportunity that the NSDRC has offered in providing everyone with accessible and affordable housing.
The NSDRC continues to work with funders, the three North Shore municipalities and developers towards increasing the affordable and accessible housing stock across the North Shore.
infant development program
The Infant Development Program (IDP) provides family-centred services for families with infants and children from birth to three years of age who have delays in their development, or who are at-risk for developmental delays.
Services include home visits, developmental assessments, referrals, parent and child playgroup, parent education workshops, toy and book lending library, as well as information and resources. Last year during the pandemic, we were to offer complimentary toy/book playpacks to several of our families with limited resources.
We are fortunate to have such a dedicated and experienced team of consultants who were able to provide much needed support to our families over this challenging time. Over the last year, our visits with families have been hybrid, including outdoor visits, on-line Zoom visits, as well as in-home visits last summer and fall.
The highlight of our past year has been to run our playgroup once again last fall as well as this spring after being paused for the last few years due to COVID and again for several months due to extensive repairs following water damage at our Maplewood location. Families were so appreciative to be able to attend our playgroup and to connect with other parents.
At play during Infant Development Program activities
THE IDP PROGRAM AT A GLANCE:
- Core funding provided by the Ministry for Children and Families
- Served 207 infants and children and their families
- Provided 620 home visits to families
OTHER SERVICES AND PARTNERSHIPS:
- Thrive Family Services parent and child community drop-ins
- Zoom Meetings with Coast Fraser IDP and Supported Child Development programs
- Liaison with Vancouver Coastal Health, Centre for Ability, and Supported Child Development
community based services
Funded by Community Living BC, the NSDRC Community Based Services Adult Services programs saw growth in the 2021/22 year. Participants welcomed an increase in in-person supports and wider access to community activities.
- Consistently provided services to eight participants throughout the year
- Five adults are employed
- One participant found a volunteer placement
- One participants was offered increased hours at her current job
- The NSDRC attends monthly Lower Mainland meetings with other employment services providers
- The NSDRC became a member of the North Shore Inclusive Employment Network which officially went “live” this year at www.nsinclusiveemployment.org. This is a collaboration between employment services of the north shore to offer a one stop shop for everything employment.
LIFE SKILLS/INDIVIDUALIZED FUNDING
- This program had increased service delivery by over 25 hours/weekly
- Activities include cooking, playing board games, playing sports, going out to eat, arts, workshops etc.
- Activities are going back to pre-pandemic with participants enjoying the swimming pool, hiking in the community, grocery shopping, cooking…
PERSONALIZED SUPPORT INITIATIVE (PSI)
- This support program began this year with two participants offering 11 hours of services/weekly.
- Goals of the program are to support and teach participants who live independently with tasks such as grocery shopping, budgeting, cooking, meal planning, house cleaning, exercise and social opportunities.
ZAP (ZOOM ADULT PROGRAM)
- Thanks to grants from West Vancouver Community Initiative and Telus grants this program continued into the 2021/22 fiscal year.
- ZAP served over 20 participants/monthly. These participants live in a variety of communities throughout BC.
- ZAP participants recorded the STAGE report weekly and posted on our YouTube channel.
STAGE (SUPPORTED TRANSITION ADULT GROUP EDUCATION)
- STAGE welcomed two new participants this year and served 19 participants/weekly.
- “Social Kitchen” began in April using the kitchen at St-Andrew’s church.
- Participants volunteered at locations such as the ReStore, Recycling Depot and running errands.
- New products were developed such as Beehives and Little Libraries.
- Participated in 2 reconciliation projects with the Squamish and Tsleil Waututh Nations providing Little Libraries filled with Indigenous resources.
- Thanks to a grant from ParticipAction, Fun in the Park initiative offered over 15 weeks of physical activities in the Norgate Park for participants with 5-10 participants attending weekly.
A Little Library in Squamish created by our STAGE participants
mobile multi-sensory room
The “Multi-Sensory Room” has enjoyed a very successful maiden year. We have been received with warmth and enthusiasm everywhere we have gone. The most common feedback of our ‘sprinter-van-that-does’, is how much our services are needed and appreciated.
We regularly utilized the multi-sensory experience at five of our supported homes within the NSDRC to successfully help facilitate stimulation and a greater quality of life for the people we support. This has been mutually beneficial as customizing the experience to suit their needs has informed us how to expand and improve our offerings for greater effect. Recently, we have invested in a repertoire of scents and are continuing to expand the catalogue of visual and auditory experiences our clients can engage with. To that end, if you visit our van and have some suggestions, please send them our way!
We’re also honoured to have several collaborative and rewarding partnerships, including:
- The many after-school programs at Bee Haven Childcare Centres (www.beehavenkids.com). Here we are able to help staff provide an explorative and stimulating environment for the kids in their care.
- Hosting the van once a month at the NSDRC Infant Development Program infant play-group at Maplewood Farm. The NSDRC is pleased to partner with Family Services North Shore to access the Maplewood space (www.familyservices.bc.ca/find-support/thrive-family-programs/).
- And the Museum of North Vancouver during their monthly sensory friendly mornings (www.monova.ca/sensory-friendly/) for individuals who find excess stimulation overwhelming. Guests are encouraged to experience the van as part of their visit to the museum.
The Mobile Multi-Sensory Room parked in the sensory friendly section of PRIDE
One of the most exciting ways we’ve been engaging with the public is showcasing the van at several large events throughout the city. Some of the events included the CityFest at Lonsdale Shipyards in North Vancouver, the World Autism Day event at the Museum of Vancouver, Queen Mary Elementary School ‘fun day’, and the YMCA Childcare and Referral Program professional development evening. In July we participated in the Lynn Valley Days parade along with many of the individuals who access our programs. Also in July we were invited to be in the sensory friendly section at PRIDE on Sunset Beach.
Thank you to our sponsors, your support ensures our ongoing success.
information and advocacy program
The North Shore Disability Resource Centre’s (NSDRC) Information and Advocacy program provides information and referral services, assistance with applications for disability and subsidized housing assistance for people with disabilities living on the North Shore. This year we have helped 885 people to access information and referral services, help with applications and other disability related issues.
While we have seen a year of recovery for BC’s economy, the rising cost of rent, high food costs, and long wait times to access surgeries, federal and provincial benefits have been big concerns for our clients.
Income Assistance, Persons with Disability, and Retirement benefits have not kept pace with these rising expenses for people with disabilities and many more low-income workers with disabilities, families and seniors are having to access the food bank more often to help manage their food budgets.
Our two resource assistants have assisted 31 people to apply for Persons with Disability benefits and we have helped nine people to appeal their Persons with Disability benefit denial decisions.
We assisted 36 people to apply for Canada Pension Plan Disability and Retirement benefits. As well we have helped 12 people with disabilities to apply for Canadian Disability Tax Credit. NSDRC Information and Resource program is one of the few that can help anyone with a disability who resides in District of North Vancouver, City of North Vancouver and District of West Vancouver.
We kindly thank the Government of British Columbia, District of North Vancouver, City of North Vancouver and the District of West Vancouver for their continued support to help us assist people with disabilities in our community. We thank our donors for their kind generosity to help us continue to deliver our program to help people with disabilities and their families.
disability community connection network
Now in our 6th year, the “Disability Community Connection Network” (DCCN) is thriving. Our online presence allows DCCN to reach even more disabled individuals, including participants from across Canada and the United States! Our most well-attended session was 19 participants!
DCCN provides a safe space for disabled speakers to tell their stories and reclaim the expertise of their own lived experiences.
DCCN is a unique cross-disability group run by the disabled community for the disabled community. The group connects and reaches all different types of disabilities and ages. DCCN brings disabled people together through our shared experiences to gain a deeper understanding of our similarities and differences within the community.
Topics we have covered this year include:
- Accessible Design
- Disability Identity – Self Promotion and Social Media Presence
- Adaptive Snow Sports (VASS)
- Normalizing Disability
- Photography and Disability
- Personal Experiences with COVID
- Disability Tax Credit and Registered Disability Savings Plan – Information Session
“I have been a member of DCCN since the beginning and haven’t found anything like it since joining. The sincerity and effort that goes into creating a space that is inclusive and open to all, are unmatched. As well as being friendly and professional, the facilitator and staff are knowledgeable and helpful. I have learned a ton of useful and surprising information about life with all kinds of disabilities and career options that I hadn’t considered. I look forward to continuing my attendance and participation in the future.”
Thank you to all our speakers: Karen Lai, Marco Pasqua, Tom Mooney, Michael Todaro and Darrell Hyatt.
“One of our biggest challenges in society is that society is not built for people with disabilities. It’s just not […] and I hope that you would be interested in supporting me, as we go forward and try to try to normalize disability for everybody. […] I know from my personal experience how I want to be treated and I’m going to be insisting on that. […] We need to learn a disability dialogue.”
DCCN Speaker – Michael Todaro (Normalizing Disability Session)
DCCN has proudly provided American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation for 6 years, and for the first time this year we were excited to provide a safe space for ASL students to learn how interpretation functions online. Thank you to everyone that has supported DCCN over the last 6 years!