The Saskatchewanderer spent some time this spring hanging out around COR capturing some footage of Patrick and his friends! Here is what he had to say:
“No two people are the same. That is the philosophy behind Creative Options Regina (COR), an organization that provides personalized support services for people with disabilities. The staff at COR tailor supports for each individual to help them discover their talents and interests and to help them reach their personal goals. COR has helped Patrick find full time work, develop an active social life and live independently in his own home. I first had the pleasure of meeting Patrick during a sports night at the Core Ritchie Community Centre in Regina, and I immediately understood his nickname — Energizer Bunny.”
A special thanks to the Government of Saskatchewan (Ministry of the Economy) and Neil Fisher (The Saskatchewanderer) for making this video possible!
4to40 is a growing initiative! COR, in partnership with Campus For All, University of Regina, are striving to increase inclusive employment opportunities for the people we support. Through the development of collaborative partnerships, we are striving to achieve social and employment inclusion for all those supported through the 4to40 Inclusive Employment Initiative.
Now entering our 3rd year, 4to40 is strengthening the job coach recruitment, training and development of our initiative with the addition of an Employment Partnership Consultant.
For more information, contact Michael Lavis at: email@example.com or Faith Savarese at: Faith.Savarese@uregina.ca
Are YOU feeling up to the challenge? COR proudly presents the Fit & Fun Weight Loss Challenge. The grand prize is a gift certificate for the purchase of a round trip ticket for two to Edmonton, along with a one night stay in the Fantasyland Hotel.
If you’re interested contact Melissa at melissa(at)creativeoptionsregina(dot)ca
We need to rethink how we define “community”. People will say things like, “lets go out into the community”, when in fact we’re already IN community. We all make up the community; just being you makes you a part of it! Embrace what’s around you!
“Our approach is based on moral development. This is not a church thing. It is an internal feeling that we develop over time about what is good, who we are, and why we are on this earth. It is an inner change, a change of the heart. It is what most children learn early in their life about feeling safe and loved. It is what many of us have to re-learn when we are crushed by life’s sorrows.
So, we have to develop an understanding of basic moral values and teach these in an authoritative manner, not coming down on the person, but patiently and repeatedly teaching them. Morality is the way we feel and view our role in life. It is made up of our basic beliefs that are learned through our own life-experiences and ongoing reflection on our place in the world. It is formed deep down in our memories over time and with many experiences. Morality is on the fringe of our consciousness. We often do not have to stop and think, “Should I do this or not do that?” Our life-decisions come out of deep, deep memories. A spirit of gentleness focuses on teaching deep moral memories to people whose hearts are broken. Our primary strategy is repeated acts of love.
The first moral rule is found in a feeling of companionship– safe, loved, loving, and engaged. We know, without even thinking about it, that we need to feel safe and loved on this earth. We gravitate toward those who fulfill this sense and move away from those who make us fearful. Yet, many people whom we support are filled with fear of themselves and of others. We look for meaning in our lives and find it in our relationships with others other family, our children, our friends. Many whom we serve do not have this type of meaning.
The second is found in community– the goodness of being with others, engagement with others, and reaching out to others, and a sense of connectedness with others. It is a feeling of being collectively safe, loved, loving, and engaged. It moves from a singular relationship with the caregiver to a collective relationship with a circle of friends.
Companionship and community occur in a spiral. The initial relationship is at the center, but slowly spins outward to others. Everyone needs the feeling of being safe and loved to also feel loving and engaged. This evolves with one person, then two, then many.”
-John McGee, ‘Mending Broken Hearts’
“Mentoring is a way to help teach others about gentle care giving, to enter into terrifying spaces and teach others to feel safe and loved.” Mentoring is an approach to do this. It is a way to share with others a spirit of gentleness and justice.
A mentors role is to define the empty and sometimes violent spaces that exist between caregivers and marginalized individuals in institutions, shelters, homes, prisons, nursing homes, schools and wherever we happen to serve. These places have to be filled up with the caregivers’ laces of affection–their loving touch, warm words, and kind gazes. Caregivers need to stop and reflect on the formation of companionship and community and the role of helping individuals feel safe, engaged, loved and loving. From this foundation, caregivers can then create communities of caring. Mentoring is a process for teaching caregivers to establish companionship and community.
Mentoring is an ever-deepening task that calls for the development of trust among caregivers and the formation of a sense of companionship and community. This trust starts by the Mentor entering into the caregivers’ space with a deep sense of humility and justice and helping each caregiver feel safe and respected. It is the informal coming together of the Mentor and caregiver around the kitchen table and the sharing of the meaning of companionship and community. It is working together and finding ways to teach marginalized people these feelings.”