Yellow Brick House
This staff memeber has been with Yellow Brick House for 23 years and has proven herself to be an exceptionally strong and dedicated advocate on behalf of the abused women she supports through their legal journey to live a life free of violence. In all that she does, both professionally and personally, she is the consummate believer in the strength and power of women to overcome their hardships and move forward in a positive light.
An example of this is the undeniable fact that she has dedicated 23 years of her life to this organization, our mission and vision.
Every clients experience and circumstance is different; however, this staff member truly believes that each and every outcome should be the best it can be. This is why she has dedicated herself to helping women break free from violent situations, legally, through the proper court channels and is always standing beside her clients during court proceedings.
During her 23 years with the agency, this staff member has seen many changes in the legal system. She continues to expand her learning through research and trainings to insure that her skills are as up to date and applicable as possible for the clients she is serving.
She helps to guide Yellow Brick House clients through the labyrinth that is our legal system in order to assist them in being safe and secure and receiving the most favourable decision and package that they are entitled to. Her support and knowledge is invaluable to her clients and her consistent presence by their side during legal proceedings sets her apart. Her high quality of service has been recognized by clients, as many will return to the courthouse years later for further support. Her knowledge of the Family Law system is so highly respected that she often has some of the lawyers in the courthouse seek her out for advice on their casework.
Being one of the humblest and “behind the scenes” individuals we have at Yellow Brick House, combined with her support and dedication to the cause and her clients, inspired this nomination. She is a very honest and caring individual, as shown by her immense loyalty and her long-standing history at Yellow Brick House. She is never one to ask for recognition; she does what she does because she loves her job and her clients and fights for what she believes in. She has inspired many colleagues by her unfailing devotion to our mission and her optimistic view of life. She is a no-nonsense, tell-it-like-it-is individual who works tirelessly to get the job done.
This staff member is greeted by name, like a beloved family member, when she is in the court buildings. She is well respected and has an amazing reputation within the community. Clients who have had the pleasure of working with Alice, despite their circumstances, sing high praises years after they have moved on.
The impact of her work can best be summed up by a story I heard told at our annual gala by one of our clients. This individual, after suffering much abuse at the hands of her spouse, left the family home and moved into our shelter with her children. Once there, she received support from various departments within Yellow Brick House. However, it was her court battles against her abuser that stood out. The process to obtain what was legally and rightfully hers was a long and fearsome battle, and every step of the way, she was right there beside her – offering her strength, wisdom, guidance and support. In the end, after almost a two year fight, the case was settled and the client was able to move on with her life. This is just but one example of Alice’s inspirational work and impact on community members.
2013 York Region Bhayana Family Foundation Awards
Recognizing the extraordinary staff of United Way-funded agencies who make a difference every day.
Keynote: Hon. Reza Moridi, Minister of Research and Innovation, MPP (Richmond Hill)
Location: Markham Convergence Centre
Time: 8:30am – 10:00am
Social service workers honoured at awards ceremony
May 9, 2013, Markham – Earlier today at the Markham Convergence Centre, The Bhayana Family Foundation Awards recognized the outstanding contributions of social service employees from United Way York Region partner agencies. Thanks to the generosity of Madan and Raksha M. Bhayana, five $1,000 prizes were given to individuals and projects that support healthy people and strong neighbourhoods across York Region.
“Much of United Way’s work focuses on recognizing the success stories of individuals receiving support from our programs. It’s important to also highlight the staff person behind the program. They are often the first helping hand that plays such a critical role in bringing success to the lives of so many,” said awards founder, Raksha M. Bhayana.
The Bhayana Family Foundation has sponsored these awards with United Way Toronto and United Way Calgary, and this year generously extended the awards to York Region. This new event has been met with an incredibly positive response, as noted by one of the winners, Helga Sirola from Learning Disabilities Association of York Region.
“The fact that my team thought I make a difference in their lives and on those that we serve is an honour in and of itself,” she explained.
Keynote speaker, The Honourable Reza Moridi, Minister of Research & Innovation, MPP (Richmond Hill), highlighted United Way’s shared commitment to building strong communities in York Region. He also acknowledged that the awards are a necessary and important addition to the region and social services sector.
A call for nominations was made in February, and United Way received dozens of peer-to-peer nominations under the following categories: dedication; innovation and creativity; leadership; team achievement; and community partnership. The nominations were reviewed by a selection panel comprised of social service sector staff, labour and one community member-at-large.