New group to tap into BACI’s ‘massive collective wisdom,’ says Richard Faucher
Thursday April 5, 2012 — Camille Jensen
A new group called Ideas for Change launched at the Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion (BACI) to provide a space for collaboration and the exploration of new ideas to advance social inclusion.
BACI executive director Richard Faucher says Ideas for Change invites staff members from all levels of the organization to share their good ideas, some they may have had for years, and work with a team to move them forward.
The group will grapple with “how do you take something from a concept to reality?” a task Richard says is about learning, experimenting and working in new and non-linear ways.
“With a group of bright people at BACI, we’re creating a space where we can really learn together,” Richard says.
“What’s working, what has worked, what doesn’t work, what were the ingredients to success, what were struggles . . . We are committed to learn together.”
Ideas for Change will also not be afraid to fail, starting projects and stopping them if they realize the idea isn’t hitting the mark.
“There is a lot of creativity at BACI and if we don’t tap into this, I think we are missing out on opportunities to find new ways to have people completely, fully included in the community,” says Richard, adding traditionally BACI has very process driven.
Ideas for Change has 25 members and has met twice. The group is continuing to exchange ideas through an online hub.
Some of the Ideas for Change generating enthusiasm include expanding posAbilities’ Can you Dig It? community garden model.
Richard says BACI will be creating several new gardens and Ideas for Change is asking how the gardens can be used to further expand inclusion. For example, what if people who have a disability made a product from the gardens they could sell at farmers markets?
“We’re taking something that we know is working, that is advancing inclusion, and asking where do we take it from here?” says Richard of the Can You Dig It? model.
Another success story that Ideas for Change is exploring is BACI’s iPad Users Group, which sees more than 20 people gather at Metrotown’s Apple store monthly to exchange learning on how iPads can support people who have a disability.
“This was one idea that moved forward fast so it’s important for us to capture what were the ingredients of success,” says Richard.
In the future, Richard says Ideas for Change will expand to include community members, from business to education, who are interested in collaborating on how to advance inclusion of people who have an intellectual disability.
“I don’t know if we’ve been super successful at connecting people into the community as full citizens,” says Richard. “So I think we really have to dig deeper to find ways for people to be included . . . who else do we need to bring on board to collaborate with us?”
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