During October and Community Living Month, Community Living BC (CLBC) and its partners are celebrating the first 12 months of progress on a pilot project that is creating more jobs for adults with developmental disabilities, autism and FASD in the Central and Upper Vancouver Island.
Launched last October, CLBC has invested $200,000 to date to support this project in the Central and Upper Vancouver Island. The pilot is being led by CLBC in partnership with service providers, community members, employers, individuals, families and other government partners, who are using a broad range of activities to help adults served by CLBC find and keep work. The work is part of the comprehensive, three-year Community Action Employment Plan released in March 2013. The goal of the Plan is to help 1,200 more of the adults CLBC serves to find and keep employment. Currently, in the Central and Upper Island CLBC supports about 1,900 individuals and close to 200 are receiving employment-specific supports.
Since the last progress update in March 2014, work on the pilot includes:
- Creating seven community-specific plans to guide job development and promotion at the local level
- Strengthening collaboration between CLBC and WorkBC in multiple communities to ensure there is more efficient and effective use of resources
- Participating in and / or developing youth transition fairs with a focus on employment in Port Alberni and Nanaimo to help youth and their families with the transition to adulthood
- In the Comox Valley, transforming day services to employment supports, and establishing new employment services, to help more individuals find and maintain employment
- Reaching out to remote Island communities to inform youth leaving school about options for employment
- Developing the first employer recognition uncheon in Campbell River to recognize and celebrate employers who have inclusive hiring practices
- Creating partnerships with Port Hardy and Port McNeill media to promote and highlight success stories of employers who have hired adults CLBC serves
- Providing two days of marketing and promotional training to agencies providing employment supports and services to help them with job creation
For more information on CLBC, Community Living Month activities or the Community Action Employment Plan, visit www.communitylivingbc.com.
Minister of Social Development and Social Innovation Don McRae
“We know that many people with disabilities have the skills and experience to help B.C. businesses thrive. We also know that when barriers are removed and people with disabilities are able to participate fully in their communities and support their families, everyone benefits. These local Community Action Employment Plan initiatives will help promote awareness about the benefits of hiring adults with developmental disabilities and increase inclusive employment opportunities.”
CLBC CEO Seonag Macrae
“One of the findings of the Community Action Employment Plan consultations was that the community living sector requires both traditional and non-traditional partners to help build more employment opportunities for the people CLBC serves. What is clear through the work being done in the Central and Upper Island is that there are many champions of inclusive employment, and it is with their support and hard work that we will collectively help individuals who want to work, find and keep work.”