April 11th, 2018
Lost time is a matter of perspective
“Lost time is never found again” –Benjamin Franklin
With all due respect to Mr. Franklin, with the assistance of Extend-A-Family Waterloo Region’s Respite program, lost time can potentially be found again. The respite program at EAFWR is unique and with the funding available, we as service providers are able to ask the individuals and families we serve what they need, rather than telling them what they can have.
Asking the people we support what they need and being able to offer that individualized, catered support to them has allowed for hours, days and even weeks to be found again.
This past year, I was sitting with a family and listening to their story about how they were about to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. Mom and Dad both wished that they could go somewhere to make marking this milestone that much more special. The only issue was that they were very uncomfortable leaving their daughter with a service provider for an entire week, so decided to stay home instead. After asking about supports that they have in their circle, we were able to establish a plan with some respite funding where another of their daughters could come home for the week, stay with her sister, and the parents were able to celebrate their anniversary with a trip south.
While many of us might take a trip south for granted, this was the first trip that this couple was able to take together in over 15 years. I would argue with Mr. Franklin that some of that lost time, from the past several years, was indeed found last winter.
Living in the Community
Something we hear time and again is that the people we support want to live and feel connected to their community. Some will live with family and seek short breaks while others want an opportunity to live more independently. Programs like FamilyHome and Respite offer the creativity and flexibility to do just this.