29 November 2008
An electronic bulletin for adults who are vulnerable because of disability
and for their families, friends and supporters who care about them
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More about this series of bulletins may be found at the end, including links to past bulletins.


Breakdown: Link to The Globe and Mail's series on Canada's Mental Health Crisis
with further links to related stories in the past three months.

Ontario Passes New Legislation for People with a Developmental Disability

Passed on 30 September 2008, and assented to on 8 October, The Services and Supports to Promote the Social Inclusion of Persons with Developmental Disabilities Act, 2008 replaces the 35-year-old Developmental Services Act, which provided services mainly for people living in government-run institutions.

Act for Services to persons with developmental disabilities
In the Statutes of Ontario, this act is known by the older name under which Bill 77 was first introduced.

Link to Statute in English and in French
Explanatory note
Link for the MCSS summary of the main points of the new act.
We will bring you the text of the new act in a plain-language version, as soon as we can.

Click on this link to read the news release, widely relayed in the media, here in The Globe and Mail's Report on Business: More Independence And Choice For People With A Developmental Disability
Read our review of the legislation and the process of amending it over the summer.

The new legislation is also featured in the latest Spotlight on Transformation, the Ministry's Developmental Services newsletter.

Modeling Community Change and Innovation

In faith that the new legislation will allow more inclusion, choice and flexibility for people and families who live with a developmental disability, a three-year collaborative project funded by the Ontario Trillium Foundation is showing the way.
Visit the new website of Modeling Community Change and Innovation
which is associated with the website of the Individualized Funding Coalition for Ontario.

Why Independent Planning and Facilitation?

The Symposium in Guelph on December 2 is an opportunity to understand how Independent Planning and Facilitation can help people to lead good lives, and to consider the best options in providing such support.

Enabling people with disabilities to lead satisfying and productive lives involves having them lead their lives. This means recognizing them as citizens of the communities in which they live. It also means that they have control over key decisions about their lives, from how they will spend their days to with whom and in what sorts of circumstances they will live. For those who receive government support funding, control of their own lives also involves making decisions about where the funding is best spent to meet their needs and goals. Especially for those who have developmental or communication challenges, or for those whose life experiences have not provided them with the experience or information about options to make good decisions, an ongoing process of planning and facilitation is important to success. (David DeVidi of the Symposium planning committee)

A successful planning and facilitation process helps people lead satisfying lives by helping them make good choices, develop relationships, and become involved in their communities.  At its heart is the development of detailed person-directed plans. 

Good Planning:
  • Is person-directed. It values the person's voice first, with input from family, friends and others. This includes listening to the person regardless of how that person communicates
  • Is different for each person. It is not a meeting. It is not a document. It is a respectful process that recognizes people's changing lives. 
  • Incorporates specific strategies for the building of relationships and community connections.
  • Has clear goals and specific strategies for trying to achieve them.
  • Creates opportunities for community and service-provider innovation.
For the process to be person-directed, it is important that the person determines the level of facilitation support.  Facilitators provide values-based assistance, with a crucial value being a commitment to the person-directedness of the process. Facilitators must be flexible, informal, and free of conflict of interest. When they are, they can play many roles in this process, including:
  • ensuring that people have accurate, relevant information to develop detailed person-directed plans
  • helping people develop meaningful, reciprocal relationships and to become involved in the community
  • assisting with mediation and problem-solving as needed
Read David DeVidi's The I in Independent Planning and Facilitation: Why should Planning and Facilitation be Independent?
Read more in Common Vision for Real Transformation.
We also recommend  John Lord’s “Understanding the Power of Independent Planning and Facilitation”

Beyond the Symposium:
In various
Ontario places, it is also possible for groups of persons with disabilities and family members to explore how “IP&F” can help in real-life situations. If you are interested, please contact Elizabeth Bloomfield at to learn if there is such a support group in your community or region.



Please send submissions for this news bulletin or for the OAARSN Calendar and Bulletin Board in plain text format by email to with "announcement" at the beginning of the subject line.
Please provide details of the following as BRIEFLY as possible: 
Name of Event
 Main Speakers and Topics of Event 
 Date of Event 
 City and Location of Event
 Contact information to learn more about event
 URL Link for more information/registration 

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Announcing Series of Events

Planned Lifetime Advocacy Network (PLAN) Workshops & Seminars

Within BC or online.
To help you in planning a safe and secure future for your relative with a disability, PLAN offers a variety of seminars and workshops on topics of interest to families. For a list of upcoming events, go to PLAN's website:


Announcing Individual Events

November 30, 2008
: 10am to 4pm
Families for a Secure Future invites you to our Annual General Meeting
Location: Community Living Newmarket at 460 Oak St, Newmarket.
10am-12:30: Featuring Melissa Kitchen and her Family “Moving out on my own”
Melissa moved into her own condominium with two supportive roommates one year ago last November.  Melissa and her family will celebrate this accomplishment and share her story of moving out on her own, the joys, the triumphs, the setbacks.
12:30-1:30: POT LUCK LUNCH
2:00-3:00: Networking and What is Happening
From 3pm: AGM for members of FSF and friends.
All families welcome.
Please RSVP Joanna Goode (519) 833-8539 or

December 2, 2008, in Guelph, all day
Independent Planning and Facilitation Symposium
organized by the Wellington
Independent Planning and Facilitation Steering Committee in partnership with MCSS, Individualized Funding Coalition of Ontario and Families for a Secure Future.
Click for advance brochure and registration form




We know that some vulnerable adults and their families and caregivers are heroically using what resources they have to achieve some successes with their challenges. Some can report remarkable progress. We invite you to share your challenges, dreams and success stories, if you think others might help or benefit. If you wish, we will not publish your name or email address. You may send a message to


This bulletin is for everyone who is vulnerable because of any kind of disability, and for their families, friends and supporters. We can share dilemmas and difficulties as well as bright ideas and successes. There are announcements of events and special projects, discussions of issues and concerns, and links to useful books, websites and other resources. Our focus is mainly on Ontario, but we have wider contacts as well.

Previous Creative Supports bulletins may be found on the OAARSN website, by clicking on this link:

You may use the Search button on OAARSN's main page to look for material on topics you are interested in--either on the OAARSN website or the whole Internet.

You are receiving this bulletin because you attended the Guelph Spring Conference on Creative Supports in April 2005 or expressed interest in resources coming out of that conference. Or you may have been a member of our PLN Listserv, for people concerned with Personal Support Networks. Or someone on the List has suggested that you could be interested. We hope you will continue on the Aroha Listserv, recommend it to others, and contribute news and ideas that we may share. Please click for a technical note on how to maintain your membership of the Aroha Listserv and how to unsubscribe if you wish.

Please send news, announcements and comments to We welcome news items, announcements of events, new information, discussion questions and comments, and accounts of experience.

The Aroha Listserv and Creative Supports Bulletin are linked to the OAARSN website (Ontario Adult Autism Research & Support Network) which is hosted at the University of Guelph. Click to reach OAARSN's main page

Gerald & Elizabeth Bloomfield
Guelph, Ontario, Canada
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