2011 has been a year filled with challenge and accomplishment. We completed and implemented our new five-year Strategic Plan, achieved a three-year Accreditation rating with unparalleled success, championed the Quality of Life Project, overhauled our funding contracts, prepared for labour unrest and re-designed our Senior Management team.
In the brief moment we have to sit and reflect on the last year, one truth about BACI stands strong and clear: the most powerful asset we have – the very best thing about us – is the relationships we share with each other.
We have always valued our relationships with the people we serve, their families, our managers, staff, local business, government, community leaders, neighbours and co-service providers. We believe that at BACI, our resilience comes from the relationships with share with each other.
Relationships with people, partnerships with groups and intentional collaboration are threads that have run through our strategic themes over the last five years, and were strengthened in this year’s strategic planning process which emphasized the inclusion of all our stakeholders, including our community partners. The strategic themes of ‘Person-Centered Thinking, Planning, Doing’, ‘Social and Economic Inclusion’, ‘Community Partnerships’, ‘Prosperity’, and a ‘Healthy, Appreciated and Well-Connected Workforce’ emerged through our strategic planning as key areas of focus and have provided the framework for our operational action planning.
The supportive relationship we have enjoyed with our BACI Board, senior managers and staff (not to mention their dedication and expertise), prepared us to move through our CARF Accreditation Survey with confidence and pride.
We recognize the importance of the accreditation process and we also recognize the limitation of its scope. Accreditation uses a set of external standards to measure our service, organizational and leadership effectiveness. Accreditation does not measure the impact our services have on the quality of life of the people we serve and their families; and of course this is of the utmost importance to BACI!
The Quality of Life Project – a research study conducted by and with people with disabilities which aims to measure their quality of life – has helped us to understand how the people we serve feel about the quality of life they are living and how, and in what ways, our services contribute to or detract from their experience. Our learnings from the Quality of Life Project and CARF accreditation process will assist us over the next few years to review our internal Quality Assurance Initiative and ensure it measures both our organizational effectiveness and the impact we have on the quality of life of those we serve.
Over the last year at BACI, we have continued our mission; creating a society where people with disabilities are recognized and included as valued
Through our strategic partnership and advocacy efforts, we have made great strides on many levels. At the municipal level the recently published ‘Social Sustainability Plan’ sees the City of Burnaby adopting ‘Inclusion’ as a primary objective! At a community level BACI was nominated by the Burnaby Board of Trade as ‘Non-Profit Organization of the Year’.
At an agency level we are working to become ‘Disability Confident’, which means that from policy to practice we will ensure that every aspect of our organization is accessible to, and inclusive of, people with disabilities as employees, families, volunteers, directors and service recipients. Being disability confident allows us to lead through example – to be a role model of inclusion for other organizations and business.
In 2011, together we have strengthened our reputation as a quality service provider and a powerful leader in the community living movement. Through our new strategic plan – our PATH – we will continue to explore our assets and those of our stakeholders and then use
those assets to honour the hopes and dreams of the people we serve and their families.
Our commitment to partnership and collaboration will be demonstrated by strengthening our existing relationships and building new ones – all with an aim to advance the inclusion and belonging of people with disabilities. We will work diligently to provide services – the quality of which will be measured not only by internal and external standards, but by the impact our services have on the quality of life of those we serve.
Thanks for staying strong in your relationship with BACI. We look forward to a great future, together!
Tanya Sather and Richard Faucher, Executive Directors
Originally published in the BACI Annual Report 2011.