WOW!clbc Recognition Awards
WOW! means Widening Our World. Each year, CLBC gives WOW!clbc Awards to people who have made important contributions to helping people with developmental disabilities connect in more ways with their communities.
Every year, WOW! celebrates a different way of making people feel included. This year, we are celebrating people who go above and beyond the ordinary in their job to create a welcoming workplace, where everyone feels valued and respected.
Nominations were held throughout Community Living Month from October 1 to 31, 2012. We asked self advocates who are employed to nominate someone they work with who believes in, and practices, inclusive employment. Over 100 nominations were received and five employers from various regions across the province were selected by five panels of family members, community council representatives, CLBC staff, service providers and self-advocates. The 2012 WOW!clbc Award winners and their nominees are:
Interior – Sean Watson, Safeway (100 Mile House) – Brett Tassel is the self-advocate who nominated his boss, Sean Watson, at Safeway in 100 Mile House. Brett has worked at Safeway for over five years and says Sean listens to his ideas and finds ways for him to be successful. Sean says being recognized for a WOW Award is very rewarding. “It’s not just one person, it’s the whole team – we all work together and we all want to get the work done and have a good time. Brett is a hard working, smart and fun guy and I’m proud to be able to work with him and be a part of his life.”
Lower Mainland – Chris Kamachi, Digital Toys (Surrey) – Nevada Smith is the self-advocate who nominated his boss, Chris Kamachi. Chris owns Digital Toys in Surrey, where Nevada has worked for seven months. Chris has helped Nevada to be more hands on in the computer industry by taking him to meet vendors and showing him all sides of the business, so Nevada can learn more about the company. Nevada says, “I love my job so much that sometimes I get to work too early because I can’t wait to be there.”
North – Jeff Hockman, Safeway (Terrace) – Greg Garbutt is the self-advocate who nominated Jeff Hockman from Safeway in Terrace. This is the Terrace Safeway’s second WOW Award. The store was also recognized in 2011. Greg has worked at Safeway for over four years and says, “Jeff has been a great role model for me and he also shows an interest in me outside of my work. He comes to my birthday parties and has taken me to the movies. Jeff never makes me feel like I have special needs and treats me like he treats everyone else at work.”
Sunshine Coast – Mark Dowling, Rocky Mountain Pizza + Bakery (Powell River) – Angela is the self-advocate who nominated Mark Dowling, owner of Rocky Mountain Pizza + Bakery in Powell River. Angela has worked there for 17 years and says, “Mark is a very understanding person, always makes me feel comfortable and is open and honest when he talks to me and other people I work with. Mark listens to my ideas and helps me to learn new things.”
Vancouver Island – Peter Richmond, 49th Parallel Grocery (Ladysmith) – Amy McMillan is the self-advocate who nominated her boss, Peter Richmond, at 49th Parallel Grocery in Ladysmith. Amy has worked at 49th Parallel for six years and says, “Peter is a great guy and fun to work with. He is always nice to me, is funny and helps me to learn how to do new and different things at work. That’s Peter, you can’t do without him.”