Annual BACI Ball sees people come together to raise funds for BACI’s children’s services
Monday November 7, 2011 — Camille Jensen
VANCOUVER – The Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion (BACI) honoured one of its long-time partners posAbilities Nov. 3 for advancing the inclusion of people of all abilities and learning.
PosAbilities’ Can You Dig It! initiative and its creator Cinthia Page were honoured with Inclusion through Innovation awards during BACI’s annual ball and fundraiser.
Richard Faucher, BACI’s co-executive director, commended posAbilities which, despite an already stellar reputation, continues to grow and challenge itself to meet its goal of community living. This steadfast commitment ensured Can You Dig It!, an initiative which helps people with developmental disabilities and nearby residents transform urban spaces into gardens, was successful.
“Years ago, someone at posAbilities had an idea that gardening might be a great way to get people together and help people belong. This idea captivated the imagination of the leaders at posAbilities and was nurtured to grow,” says Richard, adding posAbilities sought expertise, created a business plan, and secured funding and support from partners like Social Venture Partners, MOSAIC, BACI and Wal-Mart.
“We recognize posAbilities’ efforts and commitment in this because we know at BACI how difficult it is to take an idea, no matter how worthy it is, and to turn it into reality. As a community, we can look at posAbilities for inspiration and leadership.”
Since launching almost two years ago, Can You Dig It! has created 20 gardens engaging 700 people in community projects, including 150 people who have a disability.
PosAbilities president Celso Boscariol accepted the blown-glass Inclusion through Innovation award and said the recognition is an honour. He adds Can You Dig It! has been a pleasure to watch grow.
“It’s a local community garden initiative that enhances the lives of residents and citizens of Burnaby, and our communities around the lower mainland,” says Celso, adding there is something about gardening, and growing things that brings people satisfaction.
The first-ever Inclusion through Innovation awards honours an organization and an individual. This year, Richard says posAbilities’ deserved further recognition for understanding that a key ingredient to success is the right people.
Cinthia, Can You Dig It! project co-ordinator, has spent countless hours researching gardening and making connections with city and community partners. The initiative’s achievement owes much to Cinthia’s love of people, and her passion for making communities welcoming places, says Richard.
“Everyone who has met her, has the same reaction: here’s a great soul with a great spirit,” says Richard.
Cinthia recently gave birth to her newborn son and couldn’t attend the awards ceremony.
BACI’s ball was held at the Pan Pacific Hotel. The night featured a three-course dinner, live and silent auctions, a jazz band, and dancing. All proceeds from the night benefit BACI’s children’s services.
— More to Come
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