Keegan and Kristine coordinate the service days that take place monthly in Stouffville and Unionville. Between them, they arrange for the facility, prepare the promotion, and staff the monthly service days.
These service days have a major impact by providing service to clients in their own community. Most of these clients are elderly, so having local community clinics instead of having to travel to Newmarket, makes the difference of whether they receive service or not.
Both Keegan and Kristine have to travel to different locations, set up their work remotely and bring back equipment and files to and from the office. However they do this each month so that our clients have the opportunity to see their Low Vision Specialist, receive an assessment, can receive referral to other services, and ask any questions they may have regarding technical aids and equipment which will help them deal with their vision loss and improve day to day quality of life.
Keegan and Kristine are always looking for places and ways to promote these Service Days and ensure that clients are aware that they have a local option. Transportation is a huge issue for our clients, so having a location that is close to them often is the difference between receiving service or not being able to obtain service. Both locations are in seniors centre/retirement homes, so this makes the clinics very accessible to seniors and those with multiple disabilities.
CNIB has a history of organizing and offering Service Days throughout York Region. It inspires me that a service staff is willing to pick up this tradition, and spend the time to organize and book these days, and put aside one day a month from their schedule in order to drive down (in all types of weather) to staff the day and bring all of the equipment that is involved.
Kristine and Keegan always try and make everything easier for the clients. Often they will arrange to drop into a clients home, if the client is too elderly or infirm to get over to the clinic, and pick up or drop off an item if that is easier for the client.
Kristine and Keegan are always looking for ways to coordinate efficiency with client service delivery, and provide the best possible service to the client. This is a challenge within a large geographical area like York Region. So being able to coordinate deliveries and visits with the Service Days schedule and geography, always benefits the clients. For Keegan and Kristine, serving clients needs is what it is all about!
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.