The most frequently reported issue for people who identify as intellectually delayed is loneliness. All people yearn for connection to others. Research shows that relationships to others is the fundamental factor in a good quality of life.
Isolation and loneliness are the common factors in so many of our social concerns and our ‘modern’ community needs help to become a healthy place for all people.
At Alice Saddy Association we have done a pretty good job of finding decent and affordable housing for people that we support. (Read Elsie’s story!) We are a major partner of City of London, Housing Access Centre who work with us to provide subsidized housing to many of the one hundred and fifty people that we support.
We employ over one hundred dedicated and skilled Direct Support Professionals (DSPs) who help keep the people we support on track with the many necessities in their daily life such as banking, shopping, food preparation, health care, laundry and cleaning. These are all the ‘must do’ support tasks and as Ontario Government funding has not increased with inflation, there is the risk that our supports will not have the capacity to go to the next step, which is helping people to find connection in their community.
“We have a big task to help bring our
community and the people we support together.”
This is where the real dedication kicks in! Our employees and our volunteer Board of Directors increasingly understand that when people have relationships with store clerks, neighbours, bus drivers and friends that they are on the road to the ‘good life’. Our DSPs stretch that extra mile to help people they support to find their way into relationships, making that introduction or providing that encouragement to go to new places. They listen carefully to people they support to help discover their interests and then help pursue these with others who have this in common such as joining clubs, attending events, finding employment or volunteering.
All of us involved with Alice Saddy Association have spoken our Vision, Mission and Values over that last several years. People supported, families, volunteers, direct support professionals and management have contributed to setting down these principles. People have committed to these and our actions follow.
We invite you to examine our Vision, Mission and Values and ask that you provide your voice in support of our work together. We also ask you to please show your support through membership in the Alice Saddy Association, which is vital to us as a not-for-profit charitable community organization. If you know others who would support us in this way, please ask them to join as well.
We have a big task to help bring our community and the people we support together. We have found that gestures of support, however small they may seem, can lead toward the good life for people that we are here to support.