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1 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario Annual Report sciontario.org Transform We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

2 A spinal cord injury can happen to anyone at any time. 11 PEOPLE EACH WEEK More than one a day is the estimated number of people in Ontario who sustain a new spinal cord injury. 2-3 YEARS The average time it takes to attain optimal independence following a spinal cord injury. 33,000 PEOPLE Are currently living with a spinal cord injury 33,000 people in Ontario and 86,000 in the rest of Canada. $3.6 BILLION The estimated annual economic cost of traumatic spinal cord injury in Canada. Chris Transformation Chris says he used to be a hard-working guy, rooted in a routine of more than eighty hours a week. Work was the focus of Chris life. Since his spinal cord injury, Chris says he has a new full-time job: working on himself and his life. Chris loves nothing better than a good workout at the gym, and he has the body to prove it! He needs to stick to a regular routine in order to maintain his health. Chris credits Spinal Cord Injury Ontario with bringing wonderful and enriching relationships to him. Chris says, Spinal Cord injury Ontario helps with things like wheelchair maintenance and providing healthcare information things that people would have some trouble understanding, if they aren t familiar with spinal cord injuries. In the future, Chris hopes to branch out and be more independent, but says he knows Spinal Cord Injury Ontario is there if he needs us. 2 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

3 We ve got your back. You ve got your future! OUR MISSION Spinal Cord Injury Ontario (formerly Canadian Paraplegic Association Ontario) assists persons with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities to achieve independence, self reliance and full community participation. WHO WE ARE 17 offices, 9 different client programs and services, 13 departments, 168 staff serving people with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities in Ontario. OUR VALUES RESPECT for spinal cord injury experience, for each other and for all communities EXCELLENCE in all we do ACCOUNTABILITY through transparency and ownership of outcomes LEADERSHIP in service and quality of life INCLUSION in all communities and within our organization INNOVATION in overcoming challenges OUR VISION SCI Ontario champions excellence in service, advocacy and quality of life for people with spinal cord injuries. TABLE OF CONTENTS We ve got your back. You ve got your future! 3 Chair & Chief Executive Officer s Summary 4 What We Do 7 Chief Executive Officer Bill Adair Answers our Stakeholders Questions 8 Our Financials 10 Balanced Scorecard 14 Our Board of Directors 16 Our Staff 18 Awards 22 A Bushel Full of Thanks 30 Help Us Grow 37 Our Branches Annual Report 3

4 Chair & Chief Executive Officer s Summary was an historical transformation for Spinal Cord Injury Ontario on several different fronts. For starters, we changed our name and our brand. After 67 great years as Canadian Paraplegic Association Ontario we joined our Federation s National organization and provincial Federation members in a name change. We believe our new name, Spinal Cord Injury Ontario, is inclusive of all people who could benefit from our programs and services and our name is clear about who we serve. As we move ahead we will never forget our proud past, and it continues to shape our organization, our values and how we go about achieving our mission. Another historical achievement that occurred this year was winning the Voluntary Sector Reporting Award for the third year in a row, deeming us Exemplars by the award creators, the Queen s School of Business, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario, PwC and the National Post. As an Exemplar, our organization s annual report is presented as an example of a best practice to other charitable organizations hoping to win the award. Although rules stipulate that we are unable to compete for the award for the next few years, we remain committed to transparent and accountable reporting and communicating effectively with clients, donors, stakeholders and beneficiaries. Our winning annual reports can be found on our website at And last, but not least, we have begun the long, but sure to be rewarding journey towards accreditation through CARF International. Our goal is to achieve accreditation of our governance, business operations and Attendant Services Program by March We have been busy over the past year with quality improvement projects across the organization including developing a two-year accreditation work plan. We ve struck a Board Quality Committee. We ve developed a standardized client orientation package to ensure that clients across all services receive the right information as they enter service with us. And we ve invested in advanced technology to meet staff training needs across the province. We are well on our way to achieve our goal of inaugural accreditation for the organization. As the title of this annual report suggests, our organization is in transformation; our clients and members are also in transformation. Change is inevitable and we choose to shape our future, for as beautiful as the blossom is, it eventually turns into the pure apple. And that is something especially excellent! We are in the second year of our three-year strategic plan, Good to the Core. The following are our Strategic Directions with highlights of what we have achieved so far. 4 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

5 HIGHLIGHTS Achieve the greatest results for people with spinal cord injuries by advancing service access, innovation and excellence We served over 2,100 people this year. We served 565 people with new injuries. We developed 157 peer matches through our Peer Support Program. We supported 80 people as they return to work through our Employment Services. 80% of our clients surveyed were satisfied or very satisfied with the services we have provided. 87% of our clients would recommend our services to others. Through the Ontario TeleHealth Network and Adobe Connect, we have been able to transmit across the province our Spinal Cord Connections education sessions allowing us to inform and reach more stakeholders. We have now fully implemented the new community health assessment tool. We are able to track a person s needs and preferences using a system that other community health service providers also access. The assessment travels with the individual who may live in a range of settings through their recovery including assisted living and Long Term Care. This is good news for the client who does not have to continuously provide information over and over again. The Ottawa service team was awarded a Community Partner Achievement Award by the Ottawa Hospital Rehab Centre. The award recognizes a community partner that supports patients in their recovery and works in partnership with the rehab centre, ultimately leading to positive outcomes for our clients with regards to health and wellness, and regaining their independence. Based on client satisfaction feedback, a working team was formed to revise our Employment Services workshops to include agreed upon learning outcomes for each topic. Staff will be trained to support the new vision and implementation will occur in the first quarter of the year. By streamlining the process for accessing Employment Services with staff role changes and more frequent contact with those on the waiting list, we have been able to cut our wait time for service down from six to eight months, to one month. Build recognition as the most reliable voice, advocate and leading expert on living with spinal cord injury in Ontario We changed our name to be clear about our focus on the people we serve. We achieved changes to municipal, provincial, and/or federal government priorities, policies, and procedures, exceeding our target in achieving policy changes this fiscal year. We advocated to have the accessible bus route to the Ottawa Rehab Hospital reinstated on a 24-hour basis so that our clients could access the rehab centre for doctor appointments, therapies and programs. We advocated to maintain discretionary benefits for people with disabilities through the Hamilton City Council when the province cut these benefits from the provincial budget. Discretionary benefits support a range of items such as home renovations, adaptive equipment and subsidies for special circumstances. Unite people and communities to share knowledge and drive change relating to spinal cord injury We worked with SCI Action Canada on a research project that provides peer volunteers with more tools to help their matches set and achieve goals. 730 volunteers provided 7,744 hours of service across our province to ensure that we could provide programs, services and events to our stakeholders. We developed 103 strategic partnerships with organizations that benefit our programs and services We developed a Public Policy section of the SCI Ontario website that will be released in the summer of This section will engage people and encourage them to promote change in their areas of interest Annual Report 5

6 Maximize our effectiveness through excellence in governance and accountability We have made organizational structure changes to provide role clarity and accountability. We have developed a gap analysis of our Attendant Services Program, corporate business operations and board governance to CARF International Standards and developed a two-year accreditation work plan. We have developed a Board Quality Committee to oversee our work in this area. We have redesigned our incident management protocol by streamlining incident management reporting, resolution, and data analysis with a goal of continuous quality process improvement and prevention of future incidents. The new incident management system will be implemented with staff training in We have completed an evaluation of scorecard measures and updated them to align with our three-year strategic plan. New measures include brand recognition, a measure on staff experience with SCI Ontario s Health and Safety system, as well as improvements in financial measures. We continue to follow our Strategic Plan, Good to the Core, to keep us focused on our efforts and to produce results. Deliver results for people with spinal cord injuries by increasing and diversifying revenues We continue to build our major gift program into our array of fundraising strategies. We have outlined a new supper club strategy to raise funds through our intimate relationships with our supporters. We have developed a strategy to re-vamp our signature event, the Wheelchair Relay Challenge, which includes phasing out smaller community events that may compete with attendance and dollars raised. We move into , with confidence because we are in a continual pattern of improvement ensuring the ability to provide our clients our best programs and services. We are on track for reaching our goals. Thank you to those who inspire us to work hard, and to those who support us in doing so. Michael Gottlieb Chair, Board of Directors Bill Adair Chief Executive Officer 6 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

7 What We Do ADVOCACY We help people living with spinal cord injuries to find the resources they need and provide them with the tools to develop self-advocacy skills. INFORMATION SERVICES We have many resources available to assist people who are living with a spinal cord injury, including our website (www.sciontario.org), the Spinal Cord Connections Resource Centre, our Information Resources Coordinator and other knowledgeable staff across the province. We are here to help! MEMBERSHIP Joining SCI Ontario s community has many benefits, including participation in our membership events, access to up-to-date, relevant news about spinal cord injury, and connection to others. Membership is free to people with disabilities and their family members for the first year! PEER SUPPORT We connect people living with spinal cord injuries to fully-trained volunteers who can share their experience and knowledge. We can connect family members, too. PUBLIC POLICY We provide disability-specific, policy analysis that brings awareness and education to elected officials, and we support our membership through advocacy initiatives that aim to create a more inclusive province. REGIONAL SERVICES We encourage and support people living with spinal cord injuries to be as independent as possible. We provide practical help, service navigation, information, resources, education, and support in the adjustment to having a disability. We will meet people in the hospital, in rehab, in their home, or in the community. If you can t come to us, we ll go to you! SCI SOLUTIONS ALLIANCES People with spinal cord injuries can connect with our collaborative network of people and organizations in the SCI community. We address systemic barriers that affect community participation and optimum health and use customized solutions and proven best practices to help improve the lives of people with spinal cord injuries in Ontario. ATTENDANT SERVICES We provide attendants to assist people with permanent physical disabilities live independently at home, work and at post-secondary school in the Greater Toronto Area, given the person can initiate and direct their personal care services. EMPLOYMENT SERVICES We help people with spinal cord injuries who are looking for work in the Greater Toronto Area identify work-related goals and find satisfying employment. Our services also help employers find qualified candidates and evaluate their workplace accessibility and job accommodation requirements Annual Report 7

8 Chief Executive Officer Bill Adair Answers our Stakeholders Questions QFundraising is obviously still a challenge. What is going on? A The past year has been challenging for all charities due to the uncertain economy and fierce competition in fundraising. Turnover in Resource Development staff, including the leadership of the department, set the team back as new people came on and were learning new roles. As well, staff were taking on more responsibilities to fill gaps in the department. The upside of this situation is we have had the chance to re-evaluate the Director position within Resource Development. As it is a job with high expectations we have decided that moving forward we will hire a Vice President for this position. We are confident we will find the right person for the job. We were down in revenue this past year. Participation has been low in events leading to some having to be cancelled. Through our Major Gifts and Sponsorship programs, we are continuously re-acquainting and introducing Spinal Cord Injury Ontario to potential donors and sponsors. More emphasis is being paid to marketing of our events and fundraising efforts. The Fund Development and Marketing Committee of the Board and Resource Development management meet regularly to collectively develop solutions as we move forward. I remain confident that this coming year will bring success in our revenue efforts and I urge you to support Spinal Cord Injury Ontario in any way you can. We depend on donations from our stakeholders to serve as many people as possible with spinal cord injuries. QWhy should I sponsor/support SCI Ontario and your events instead of another worthy charity? A A spinal cord injury is one of the most devastating events that can happen in a person s life. With the right supports at the right time, people can and do defy tragedy and build triumph in their lives. At SCI Ontario, we will do whatever it takes to assist a person to rekindle a passion for life and to develop the courage needed to pursue new dreams with dignity, passion, meaning and hope. We are proud to say that 87% of our clients surveyed would recommend our services. But we can t help all those who need our services without your help. We need your support to reach the 33,000 people living in Ontario who have a spinal cord injury. As shown on our Financial Statements, 76 cents of every dollar spent goes to programs and services that benefit people with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities. These services include Information and Education programs, Advocacy, Peer Support, Regional Services, financial support for daily living or equipment needs, Attendant Services and Employment Services. SCI Ontario is committed to transparency in our accounting practices as well as quality and excellence in our programs and services. By supporting our charity, you know you will be making a difference in the lives of people with spinal cord injuries. 8 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

9 QWhy is it important for Spinal Cord Injury Ontario to achieve accreditation by 2015? A Accreditation is an accountability and quality improvement process that creates a system of organizational and program standards. This is good news for our clients because through this process, we are showing our commitment to ensure that there is client safety and respect throughout the organization. We follow an Ethical Code in fundraising and a Client Bill of Rights. We are mindful of health and safety in our service provision, and we ensure that every client can expect the same high quality service regardless of geographic location, who is providing the service, or which service is being received. By making these changes and achieving accreditation, not only do our clients benefit, but our organization will have increased credibility with funders, donors, agency service partners and the public. Internally, we will have created an organizational blueprint and a guide to organizational development. The systems we create will be used as an internal management tool. And our goal is to continue to improve is the year we will achieve accreditation, but really striving for excellence is a work in progress. Our organization will always be in a continuous cycle of improvement, analysis and action. Watch us transform! Annual Report 9

10 Our Financials TREASURER S REPORT & ABRIDGED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS It is my pleasure to report on Spinal Cord Injury Ontario s financial results for the year ended March 31, These financial statements are the responsibility of management and SCI Ontario s Board of Directors. The Finance and Audit Committee, along with the Board of Directors, approved the financial statements which have been audited by Grant Thornton. Summarized financial statements are included in this Annual Report and complete statements are available on our website. Revenue Grants from the Toronto Central Local Integration Health Network and various Ontario ministries increased by 3% during the year to $7.9 million. This funding supports the delivery of our Attendant, Employment, Regional and Information Services, as well as our Peer Support and Education programs. The overall increase in government grants relates primarily to two one-time grants which were awarded by the Toronto Central LHIN this year. $75,000 was provided to increase our financial support for purchases of client equipment and medical supplies. An additional $195,000 was awarded specifically to alleviate budgetary pressures that many organizations also faced this year. The $195,000 one-time grant was an important revenue stream which helped to mitigate what turned out to be a challenging financial year. As an example, donations and other public support ended the year at $1.92 million which was 22% under the 2013 budget goal. The variances from budget were found in the areas of direct mail, sponsorships, major gifts and our Wheelchair Relay Challenges. In order to mitigate the decline in fundraising revenue, all areas across the organization worked together to postpone or scale back planned spending. Reduced spending, along with the additional one-time grants from the Toronto Central LHIN, allowed us to end the year with a modest surplus of $3,000. It should be noted that Spinal Cord Injury Ontario receives financial support from the Ontario Paraplegic Foundation, a related charitable organization, that s sole purpose is to support our programs and activities. During the year, grants received from the Foundation amounted to $614,000 which supported SCI Ontario s re-branding initiative, contribution to medical research, operating expenses and other strategic plan initiatives. The Foundation s audited financial statements in a condensed format are reported within SCI Ontario s complete audited statements. Financial Status Overall, SCI Ontario recorded $9.974 million in total revenue for the year. Our single largest expense relates to staff compensation and benefits which is consistent with most service-based organizations. The Canada Revenue Agency requires that charitable organizations spend at least 80% of their tax-receipted donations on programs and services and we remained in compliance with this requirement. 10 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

11 Looking ahead Management intends to continue to increase operating efficiencies and strengthen its fundraising programs as we enter the year. Our highquality, financial reporting will continue, as demonstrated in when SCI Ontario was selected for its third Voluntary Sector Reporting Award, presented by the Queen's Centre for Governance, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario and PwC. More than 100 charities across Ontario were nominated for this award, which challenges charities to be transparent and accountable to the donating public. On behalf of management, the Finance and Audit Committee and the Board, I would like to express my gratitude to our loyal stakeholders, clients, members, volunteers, sponsors, donors and our dedicated staff who make our continued success possible. Yan Xu Treasurer Chair, Finance and Audit Committee Gary and Kristy s Transformation Gary and Kristy were just teenagers when they met. Kristy lived on the west end of Hamilton while Gary lived on the east. They met through their love of bowling, began dating, and have been together ever since! Six days before their wedding, right after turning 26, Gary injured his neck from a dive. Kristy and Gary nonetheless got married and today are blessed with two lovely children. Gary says that When you re newly injured, everything seems bad but time heals all wounds and you get better each day, learn how to do new things, and life goes on. Gary praises Spinal Cord Injury Ontario s Peer Support Program and says that speaking to couples who have gone through various issues before them has been invaluable in their spinal cord injury journey. Today Gary and Kristy are paying it forward by volunteering to help other couples. Their love has blossomed to touch those around them! Annual Report 11

12 How our Funds were raised* 77% Government Support 21% Donations & Other Public Support 1% Fees for Service 1% Other * As a percentage of total revenue of $9.974 million as per audited statement, plus $240,000 of direct fundraising costs disclosed in Note 9 of full audited statement; adjusted total gross $ million. How our Funds were spent** 76% Programs and Services 11% Administration 9% Resource Development (Direct & Indirect) 4% Other ** As a percentage of total expenditures of $9.971 million as per audited statement, plus $240,000 of direct fundraising costs disclosed in Note 9 of full audited statement; adjusted total gross $ million. CONDENSED STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL POSITION As at March $ 000 $ 000 ASSETS Current Cash and cash equivalents Grants receivable Accounts receivable Prepaid expenses and other assets Total current assets Capital assets, net ,484 1,339 LIABILITIES AND NET ASSETS Accounts payable and accrued charges Deferred revenue Deferred capital contributions Net Assets Invested in capital assets Unrestricted Total Net Assets ,484 1, Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

13 CONDENSED STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL ACTIVITIES As at March 31 Actual Budget Actual Budget $ 000 $ 000 $ 000 $ 000 REVENUE Donations and other public support, net (Notes 1, 2) 2,320 2,451 1,921 2,081 Grants 7,728 7,648 7,903 7,627 Fees for service Amortization of deferred capital contributions ,180 10,215 9,974 9,822 EXPENSES Staff salaries and benefits 7,333 7,793 7,408 7,734 Purchased services (Note 3) Office Travel Payments on behalf of clients Amortization of capital assets Medical research grants National Office Professional development Miscellaneous ,178 10,212 9,971 9,821 Excess of revenue over expenses for the year NOTES: 1) Donations and other public support grossed revenue of $2.16 million (2012-$2.55 million). Direct fundraising expenses of $240,000 (2012-$227,000) have been netted against this total. 2) Donations and other public support include grants from the Ontario Paraplegic Foundation, which was established in March 2000 to receive bequests and donations from supporters of SCI Ontario. The Foundation is registered under the Income Tax Act and SCI Ontario appoints the majority of the Foundation s Board of Directors. According to the Foundation s bylaws, all resources of the Foundation must ultimately be used for the benefit of SCI Ontario. Operating and research grants to SCI Ontario of $614,000 (2012-$361,000) were used to fund SCI Ontario s commitment to research and to support several one-time strategic plan initiatives. SCI Ontario s complete audited statements, which are available on our website, include abridged audited statements for the Foundation. 3) SCI Ontario is highly dependent on the support of dedicated volunteers. Their value is not quantifiable in the above financial statements. The financial information in the condensed statements is drawn from SCI Ontario s audited financial statements. If you would like a copy of the complete audited financial statements, please contact us at or visit Annual Report 13

14 Balanced Scorecard FINANCIAL To succeed financially, how should we appear to our stakeholders? Strategic Direction Indicators Annual Target Actual 5 Balance organizational Expenses to Revenues to achieve a modest fiscal operating surplus $2,265 $2,747 1 % of total budget spent on administration Less than 15% 11% 5 % of total revenue derived from government 75% 80% 5 % of SCI Ontario board members making annual donations 100% 84% 5 Total net revenue raised through fund development activities compared to budgeted target $1,740,000 $1,180,000* CUSTOMER To achieve our vision, how should we appear to our customers? INTERNAL BUSINESS PROCESSES To satisfy our stakeholders and customers, what business processes must we excel at? LEARNING & GROWTH To achieve our vision, how will we sustain our ability to change and improve? 1 # of individuals with a new SCI served (AS, ES, PS, RS) # of individuals with an existing SCI served # of individual clients served (total) % of clients who reported being satisfied with SCI Ontario Services (AS, ES, PS, RS, IS) 80% 80% 1 % of clients who would recommend SCI Ontario services (AS, RS, PS, IS, ES) 90% 87% 2/3 # of actual changes to municipal, provincial and/or federal government priorities, policies and that will enhance quality of life for Ontarians living with a SCI # of media mentions recognizing SCI Ontario New % of staff reporting moderate to high job satisfaction 80% 83% 4 % of staff turnover 20% 13% 1 % of client service delivery hours (direct and indirect) vs. overall hours (AS, RS, PS, IS) 80% 90% 4 # of volunteers # of volunteer service hours % of staff reporting that SCI Ontario supports their health and safety in the workplace 90% 94% 1 % of staff reporting that professional development from CPA Ontario contributed to job performance 85% 78% 1 # of strategic partnerships (formal and informal) with allied organizations that benefit individuals with an SCI * 68% of Revenue Target SCI: Spinal Cord Injury AS: Attendant Services ES: Employment Services IS: Information Services PS: Peer Support Services RS: Regional Services SCC: Spinal Cord Connections 14 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

15 Sheri s Transformation Fifteen years ago, Sheri was injured in a car crash resulting in paraplegia. Her parents wanted more information and started to research organizations that could provide assistance. They found Spinal Cord Injury Ontario. Our staff came to the hospital to meet with Sheri and her parents, and that was the start of a lifelong friendship! Sheri organized the first Hamilton Wheelchair Relay Challenge with her dad, and she has been a Peer Support Volunteer with Spinal Cord Injury Ontario ever since. She says, Spinal Cord Injury Ontario has been a beacon in the journey of SCI and navigating through the system. Every time I m contacted by someone newly injured, I point them to Spinal Cord Injury Ontario. They direct you to the right resources and contacts. Sheri has started her own business in disability awareness and hopes that it will bloom and thrive in the upcoming years. In her spare time, she loves shooting hoops at the local basketball court and also plays for Team Ontario. Go Sheri! Annual Report 15

16 Our Board of Directors SCI ONTARIO BOARD OF DIRECTORS Chair Michael Gottlieb Director, Commercial Operations Genzyme Vice Chair John Shepherd Treasurer Yan Xu Associate Vice President TD Bank Group Secretary Cindy Scott Honorary Solicitor Michael O Brien Lawyer/Mediator REGULAR MEMBERS AND DIRECTORS Martha Binks Director, Legal Services Allstate Insurance Company Gord Fergusson Sr. Vice President Corporate Development Youngs Insurance Brokers Inc. Bernard Gluckstein Gluckstein & Associates Carol Ann Horvat Consultant Tony Huxter Tara Jeji Program Director, SCI Ontario Neurotrauma Foundation Mark Lamoureux Director, Corporate Banking Scotia Capital Mary Ann McColl Associate Director, Research Queen s University Bob Nigol Tom Proszowski Consultant Linda Regner Dykeman Senior Vice President The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company Dan Ross Associate Cohen Hamilton Steger & Co. Inc. Shaun Westlake Team Leader Transcontinental, RBW Graphics Senior Management Bill Adair Chief Executive Officer Joanne Beaton Director, Finance and Administration Gillian Bone Director, Client Services *On secondment Chantal Graveline Director, Client Services Darlene Frampton Director, Resource Development BECOME A BOARD MEMBER If you are interested in becoming a board member, please send a formal request to: Governance and Nominating Committee c/o 520 Sutherland Drive, Toronto, ON M4G 3V9. Please check out our Board of Directors section on our website at: directors beforehand to understand the expectations of the various positions. BOARD COMMITTEES Governance and Nominating Committee This committee is responsible for board recruitment and education including orientation sessions, succession planning, and reviewing and evaluating the board s and its committees performance. Quality Management Committee This committee focuses on the quality of client services and client safety, including outcome measures/ benchmarks, or other means by which the overall performance of SCI Ontario programs and services can be measured. 16 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

17 Finance and Audit Committee This committee is responsible for overseeing the financial controls and financial management of SCI Ontario to ensure the protection of all assets and ensure responsible fiscal management. Advocacy Committee This committee is responsible for advocating proactively and reactively for better conditions of life for people with spinal cord injuries in Ontario. Fund Development and Marketing Committee This committee provides governance oversight to the long-term fund development plan and is a Board advocate on behalf of the Resource Development team for appropriate resources and support to realize revenue objectives. Pierre s Transformation Pierre sustained a spinal cord injury while diving in His first encounter with Spinal Cord Injury Ontario came through the Ottawa Peer Support Program. Pierre still remembers the visit he received from a volunteer of that program shortly after leaving the rehabilitation centre. This individual, who also had quadriplegia, was very active professionally and in the community. His encouragement influenced Pierre s decision to go back to work, which has significantly affected his life since. Today, Pierre is married with children, and has been employed in the Federal Public Service for almost 30 years, including 22 years as a person with a disability. Pierre loves the way in which Spinal Cord Injury Ontario keeps him in contact with his peers and informed about specific services and opportunities that may be of interest to him. As Pierre says, it s good to be connected to knowledgeable people with useful information. Pierre has enjoyed a long career, but still remembers the impact of a short talk with the right person, back in the early 1990s! Annual Report 17

18 Our Staff Spinal Cord Injury Ontario spans across the province. We are fortunate to have close to 170 remarkable and dedicated staff working each day to support people with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities. Their combined qualifications, relentless passion, expertise, wisdom, and can-do spirit, create a whole that is truly greater than the sum of its parts. More than 40% of our staff have been with the organization ten years or more. In fact, three staff members have provided their services for years including Heather Hollingshead (Barrie Regional Services Coordinator); Elizabeth Zarnowiecki (London Regional Services Coordinator) and Lynn Mineque (Manager, Special Events). This commitment of our staff to the people we serve gives our organization the roots it needs to succeed. It is dedication like this that helps to ensure that the vital work of SCI Ontario has the greatest possible impact for people living with a spinal cord injury and other physical disabilities. Approximately 30% of our workforce have identified that they have disabilities themselves. Their collective insight gives our organization a clearer understanding of the people we serve. Governance and Nominating Committee Quality Management Committee Advocacy Committee Fund Development and Marketing Committee Finance and Audit Committee Board of Directors Chief Executive Officer Finance and Administration Team Client Services Team Resource Development Team Human Resources Team Quality Assurance Team Marketing and Communications Team During the year, salary increases were awarded in the 1-2% range, in conjunction with annual performance appraisals which were conducted by appropriate departmental supervisors. No finder s fees or bonuses were administered. Salaries for our unionized staff group remain governed by a collective agreement which is in effect until November, Executive compensation was reported according to the requirements of the Ontario Public Sector Salary Disclosure Act. In March 2013, staff were offered the opportunity to participate in our annual staff satisfaction survey and 91% of respondents said they enjoy working at SCI Ontario! On an overall basis, staff turnover was 13% for the year which was lower than last year s turnover rate of 16%. However, recent feedback from our staff survey was clear in its message that we need to do more to support our staff by improving internal communication and offering more professional development and training opportunities in order to continue to deliver quality and excellent service to our clients. 18 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

19 We are ever thankful for our staff and their enthusiasm, perseverance and commitment. Like the apple tree, our staff stand strong even in a storm. They are pleased when the sun shines into their clients lives, and they offer expertise and genuine support to those who strive for happiness after a spinal cord injury. With this amazing group of staff, we are well positioned to provide an abundance of service excellence to our clients in the coming year. Arie s Dad s Transformation Arie has worked in the Finance Department of Spinal Cord Injury Ontario for 15 years. He s had many chances to see how our organization s work impacts our clients. But in October, 2012 it got personal. Arie s parents had just returned from a vacation and something was not right with his Dad. He felt numbness in his hands and they were swollen. Over time his functioning got worse. By the end of December, things got really bad. Dad was at the point where he could not grab items, he was unable to dress himself, and was losing his balance, says Arie. An MRI was ordered. The results showed that Arie s Dad needed to see a spinal surgeon. His symptoms were a result of a spinal cord injury from a degenerative bone disease. Arie s Dad was then transferred to Lyndhurst Centre for rehab and recovery where SCI Ontario s provincial office is located, and where Arie works. While there, Arie s Dad received services from SCI Ontario, meeting with a Regional Services Coordinator and a Peer Support Coordinator. He also used the resource centre and the legal clinic. Arie explains, When I first started working here, I never thought that anyone in my family would need our services. However, I cannot begin to convey my appreciation for what we do here. Our work makes a difference in people s lives, and it transformed my life. In May, we celebrated my son s Bar Mitzvah. I am happy to say that, thanks to the care he received in rehab and the assistance offered by Spinal Cord Injury Ontario, not only was my Dad able to attend the joyous occasion, he was able to dance with us Annual Report 19

20 STAFF RECOGNITION AWARDS The following is a list of staff reaching service milestones this year. Congratulations to all of you! 10 Years Vina Dickenson, Attendant Eunice Ragobeer, Attendant Madelyn Scanlan, Peer Support Coordinator, Ottawa Delores Wickham, Attendant 15 Years John Agnew, Regional Services Coordinator, Toronto Lucilda Blake, Attendant Andrea Campbell, Attendant Joan Gayle, Attendant Donald Ifill, Attendant Susan Howatt, Senior Manager, Employment Services and Quality Assurance Arie Kojokaro, Manager, Finance Veronica McFarlane, Attendant Derick Morgan, Attendant Kevin Rogers, Information Resources Coordinator Marcia Smikle, Attendant Dominador Villanueva, Attendant 20 years Bill Adair, Chief Executive Officer Delcita Brown, Attendant Vera Harris, Senior Manager, Attendant Services Donna McKenzie, Attendant Theresa Power, Attendant DARRELL MURPHY AWARD ATTENDANT OF THE YEAR: LEANORA HANCLE This award was established in recognition of Darrel Murphy, past Director and founder of the SCI Ontario Attendant Service Outreach Program. Darrel started the program in 1987, securing funding from the Ministry of Health to provide attendant services to six clients. Today, we provide services to over 100 clients with physical disabilities throughout Toronto. 20 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

21 Darrel displayed a significant commitment and dedication to Attendant Services, its employees and clients during his 14-year tenure. This award was created to recognize an attendant for his/her outstanding contribution to SCI Ontario s Attendant Services, our clients and fellow employees. Leanora has made significant contribution to SCI Ontario with 23 years of service to our clients. She has recently joined the Attendant Services Joint Health and Safety Committee and is a valued member of the Attendant Services team. Her dedication and support for client service is shown through her positive mentorship at meetings, trainings and orientations. It is a pleasure to have such a committed and dedicated individual as a part of our team here at SCI Ontario. Shannon s Patients Transformation As a recreation therapist with Providence Care, Shannon often collaborates with Spinal Cord Injury Ontario for Peer Support events like monthly dinners with guest speakers. At these events, issues pertaining to spinal cord injury are discussed. Through joint programming activities our Regional Services Coordinator and our Peer Support Coordinator are easily available to people who are newly injured and their families which is beneficial because there are so many new things to learn first hand experience goes a long way. For Shannon, the most rewarding part of her job is being in the moment with patients, and helping them as they try out new skills with the goal of each person participating in meaningful leisure activities of their choice. She says it s always a wonderful experience to see people who were injured become active and thriving in the community again. Working together, we cover more ground and are making sure people with spinal cord injuries are supported to reach their goals! Annual Report 21

22 Awards KEN LANGFORD LIFETIME MEMBER AWARD KIRBY ROWE AND MARY ANN MCCOLL Kirby Rowe has made a powerful and lasting contribution to assisting individuals living with a spinal cord injury in Ontario and across Canada to achieve independence, self-reliance and full community participation. Kirby spent many years at the helm of our organization as Executive Director. His leadership brought tremendous innovation to the variety and quality of our services. His devotion to our mission beyond Ontario had a positive impact on our Federation from coast-to-coast. Kirby believed that all Ontarians living with SCI could achieve independence and live a fantastic life given the right supports, in the right place, and at the right time. Kirby maintained this belief when he took a job with Ontario s Ministry of Health to drive innovation in government-funded, rehabilitation services. He engaged service providers and service recipients in building and eventually implementing improvements throughout the rehabilitation system in Ontario. Kirby has been a member of SCI Ontario s Board of Directors and an active member of the SCI Ontario Advocacy Committee. Thank you Kirby, for your significant contributions to improving the lives of thousands of individuals, and thank you for your tenacious determination to improve rehabilitation services across Ontario. Mary Ann McColl has dedicated much of her life to levelling the playing field to unlock the citizenship potential of Canadians living with a disability. Mary Ann is currently the Academic Lead for the Canadian Disability Policy Alliance, an association of academic, community and policy partners committed to understanding and enhancing disability policy in Canada. Canadians with disabilities today have better access to health services, education, citizenship participation and employment through Mary Ann s leadership of this Alliance. Her work in the School of Rehabilitation Therapy and in the Department of Community Health and Epidemiology at Queen s University has prepared students with advanced knowledge and skills to both support an individual s rehabilitation journey, and also to enhance accessibility and inclusion for people with disabilities. Before moving to Queen s in 1992, she was Associate Professor at the University of Toronto s Department of Occupational Therapy, and Director of Research at Lyndhurst Centre in Toronto. Mary Ann is a member of SCI Ontario s Board of Directors and Chair of our Advocacy Committee. Thank you, Mary Ann, for your tireless devotion to promoting equality, opportunity and justice for all Canadians living with disabilities. 22 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

23 Jane s Transformation Jane has a nerve disease (CIDP) that led eventually to quadriplegia, and the need for Attendant Services. Jane wanted to still live independently and have her own home. Spinal Cord Injury Ontario helped by reaching out to provide on-call attendant services for her and others in her building. Jane later found a doctor who correctly diagnosed her nerve disease, and by 2004, she was walking again! In April 2012, Jane was hospitalized for eight months and ended up having to use Attendant Services. She was full of trepidation but says that her attendants have a way of enriching my life rather than making it harder. Jane says, When you have a disability, you don t want the disability to be the whole focus of your life but just an aspect, a background. Attendants make that happen by taking care of essentials so you can go out into the community and do what you re really meant to do. Beyond the Attendant Services, SCI Ontario has recreational opportunities, educational opportunities, ways to learn from peers, how to manage certain aspects of spinal cord injury or other disabilities. They provide a great network of support. Jane enjoys a good game of Bocci, and that s where she can be found most Tuesday afternoons! Annual Report 23

24 JIM & SHARON VIGMOND LEADERSHIP AWARD: SHELAGH PAUL AND LEIGH ARMSTRONG Shelagh and Leigh have made outstanding contributions to SCI Ontario by raising funds and demonstrating a passion and commitment to inspiring others to support SCI Ontario. Shelagh and Leigh have spent many years as outstanding representatives of their employer, The Dominion of Canada General Insurance Company, by promoting the work of SCI Ontario and by hosting independent events to financially support the journey of Ontarians living with spinal cord injuries to achieve independence, self-reliance and full community participation. Their support has also extended beyond the borders of Ontario, providing essential financial support for the delivery of services all across Canada. Shelagh Paul is the VP of Corporate Communications at The Dominion. For many years, Shelagh has been involved with SCI Ontario coordinating support for our multiple fundraising activities across the province. Her belief in our mission and confidence in the quality of our services has inspired many others to invest in the work of SCI Ontario. Leigh Armstrong is the Branding Coordinator at The Dominion. Leigh is also Chair of The Dominion Curling Club Championship, an annual event for men s and women s curling teams who have won their respective local club championships in their province or territory. Winning men s and women s teams compete at the Canadian Championship each year, determining the top champions. The Dominion Curling Club Championship includes an extensive fundraising campaign to support the services of our Federation members across Canada. Leigh has been a powerful influence encouraging local clubs to raise funds for local services, benefiting Canadians living with spinal cord injuries from coast-to-coast. Thank you Shelagh and Leigh, for your passionate devotion to the SCI Ontario mission, and for inspiring others across Canada to help us unlock the citizenship potential of Canadians living with a spinal cord injury. JOHN GIBBONS COUNSELL AWARD: KIM DONALDSON,THE CAPITAL HILL GROUP This award recognizes outstanding members of SCI Ontario whose commitment and devotion to the organization s mission have inspired those around them and have led to significant advances for people with spinal cord injuries and other physical disabilities in their communities. The Capital Hill Group is a privately owned government relations company with offices in Ottawa, Toronto and Montréal. They specialize in building constructive, mutually beneficial partnerships between business and government. Thanks to Kim Donaldson s leadership and commitment to the mission of SCI Ontario, Capital Hill has been donating its services to SCI Ontario for 7 years. We are extremely grateful for this support. Through this partnership, SCI Ontario has been able to utilize Capital Hill s relationships to increase funding for SCI Ontario and to affect policy changes on behalf of people with spinal cord injuries. Through Kim s assistance, SCI Ontario has been able to develop a very effective Public Policy and Government Relations Program. INDIVIDUAL GIVING: SANDRA NYMARK Sandra Nymark has been generously supporting SCI Ontario for more than a dozen years. She appreciates SCI Ontario s commitment to excellence in both service and programming. Sandra is pleased to support such a wonderful provincial charity, and she encourages others to remember the smaller charities, too. Thank you, Sandra, for your committed and generous support we are most appreciative! 24 Spinal Cord Injury Ontario We ve got your back. You ve got your future!

25 BRUCE SINCLAIR DIRECT AID AWARD SCI Ontario had been working with a client and his family to find funding to replace a porch lift that was broken in This was a difficult challenge, but an important one, as the client had daily difficulties without access to the main entrance of his home. He had patiently awaited the day when the contributed funds and family donations would be enough to replace the lift. The Bruce Sinclair Award provided the last amount of funding needed. The award recipient and his family are extremely grateful. Now they come and go through the front door! CORPORATE TRIBUTE AWARD: BURN TUCKER AND NICHOLSONREAD Burn Tucker has been a loyal sponsor for several years and has consistently demonstrated their support for Spinal Cord Injury Ontario, our work and people with spinal cord injuries in the Ottawa region. They were the first sponsor of the Peer Support Program in Ottawa. They also support our other signature events, including the Wheelchair Relay Challenge and the Champagne Auction and Dinner. They are an active and engaged partner and we deeply appreciate their support. NicholsonRead became a sponsor of the Peer Support Program in May Our partnership continues to grow and they are very supportive of the program and helping people with spinal cord injuries in the Ottawa region. They, too, support our other events including the Wheelchair Relay Challenge and the Champagne Auction and Dinner. We are thrilled to have such a great community partner. EMPLOYER TRIBUTE AWARD: PACE INDEPENDENT LIVING During the past year, PACE Independent Living has hired one of SCI Ontario s candidates as a data clerk. The Office Manager, Radka Poliakova, and the PACE team have made our candidate feel welcomed and appreciated. PACE has also provided unpaid work experiences for several other job seekers offering a great opportunity for skills development. The PACE team provides constructive feedback making the work environment a great place to learn, develop and set employment goals. We would like to thank PACE Independent Living for hiring one of our candidates and helping to train many more Annual Report 25

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