An Introduction to Building Personal Support Networks
A one-day workshop for staff, families and self advocates
Beginning with a small 2007 provincial project, the Safeguards Initiative of CLBC funded four demonstration projects that examined ways of deepening and expanding personal support networks in the lives of people with developmental disabilities. We were glad to be part of this great project and in follow up to this work, CLBC partnered with us to develop a one-day workshop to be hosted in communities throughout the province. Local agencies brought together people in their community who were interested in exploring this issue.
This workshop is intended to create a dialogue on building personal support networks, and to expand on some of the lessons learned through the demonstration projects.
- Learn about the concept of a personal support network;
- Hear success stories from other areas of the province and contribute your own ideas and stories;
- Network with others in your community and learn about networking opportunities;
- Generate solution-oriented steps and strategies for expanding relationships
Personal Support Networks: tools to expand and deepen your network
Working in small groups we will go through some of the tools people have found useful to identify who is in their network and then examine ways of expanding and deepening relationships. Often our lives are full of untapped resources, and we will share information about how to approach people and gather them together. Small groups should consist of the focal person, their family, friends and any other important people in their lives. These facilitated days can be organized to meet individual requirements.
8 – 32 hours
Self Advocate Workshop on Personal Support Networks
A curriculum based on the little green workbook, Support Networks: A Plain Language Guide for Self-Advocates, which was created with groups of self advocates from around the province. Participants will be led through a series of discussions about their own lives, as well as role playing and problem-solving.
See all the Safeguard resource here: https://www.communitylivingbc.ca/resources/safeguards-resources/
4 hours (we have some funding to provide this workshop through C.L.B.C. – please enquire).
The Changing Roles of Community Support Workers
Known as Community Support Workers, or Direct Support Professionals, or by several other titles, these are the people who work most closely with people with disabilities and their families, and care deeply about them. Often, they have the least training and are expected to keep up with rapidly changing ideas of how our culture wants to support individuals. Some of them are operating under ideas that are decades old, and need opportunities to discuss what’s different. Many are doing an amazing job of supporting individuals and community interdependence but don’t have the language to talk about the importance of their work. By looking at the history of how people with disabilities have been supported over the last fifty years, and how roles have changed, we can come to a place where we can talk more openly about what we are expected to do, what we actually do, and what we aspire to do for people we care about.
The dictionary defines instruction as a “precept” (the teaching of something known about our culture), as “direction calling for compliance,” as “an outline or manual of technical procedure,” and “the action, practice, or profession of teaching.” Often parents, community support workers, coaches, peers, managers and others find themselves with instructional responsibilities – to teach someone to cook independently, or cross the street, or engage in a social conversation, yet don’t have the information they need about how to think through goals and outcomes and break things down into teachable bits in ways that work for the particular individual. The next step in community based instruction is teaching for independence, so that we can prompt less and people can acquire mastery and self-esteem. This day includes many concrete examples as well as walking through logical progressions of how someone learns a skillset and how the instructor removes herself from the interaction.
Positive Behavioural Support in Community Context
Beginning with a brief history of behavioural psychology this day examines concepts leading to consistent supports within the individual’s person centered plan. We then go on to look at modern and contemporary theories of supporting individuals in proactive ways by supporting mastery and self-confidence, building community, creating schedules of preferred activities and communication – both our own, the team’s and the communication of those we support. Examining the role of staff supports and planning for community interdependence, we work towards a consistent team understanding of the language, concepts and goals of positive behaviour support plans.
8 – 12 hours.
“Climb Every Mountain” – Dreams, Contribution and Self Advocacy
A workshop for self advocates led by a self-advocate and facilitator about what people’s dreams are, and whether they have opportunities to pursue those dreams in their daily lives. A combination of music, art, movement and small group discussion keeps this day lively and fun.
* Vulnerabilities and Safeguards: an interdependence approach
*How to Close a Day Program
for more information or to book any of the above workshops or discuss other training opportunities, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org