First I would like to talk about the opportunity of my family being part of the Independent Facilitation Project, and the challenges we will face if funding is to end.
As parents of a young adult with a disability, especially a rare condition with many implications, having an Independent Facilitator has given us a more positive outlook for our son’s future.
Our son Matthew is slowly finding his rightful place within his community. This has not been easy for him, nor has it been easy for his family.
There have been and continues to be obstacles that we must face. Anxiety, Depression, Low Self Esteem, Fear, and not being Welcome are just some of the challenges.
Our Facilitator Joanne has been wonderful in helping not only our son, but us as well in finding supports to promote community inclusion, personal choices, and participation.
Joanne has also attended meetings and supported Matthew in difficult situations.
There have been times when we have had to revisit Matthew’s plan and work on solutions to reduce his anxiety. New places, new people, and unexpected changes can send our son into a Fight Flight Mode.
As parents we live a very demanding life that requires a great deal of patience and energy. We also undertake a series of stages beginning with denial, anxiety, depression, guilt, and anger. The anger we experience is in trying to access the most essential services that will allow our adult children to live the most productive life possible.
It’s now Twenty Years later and here I am writing a letter again asking you the Ministry of Community and Social Service to continue to provide funding in your budget for Independent Facilitation.
Independent Facilitation does work. It’s helping my son Matthew to grow with a more positive self image, a feeling of confidence, and acceptance within his community. Even with all the setbacks we are moving forward.
In 1999 my son was part of the Individualized Quality of Life Project. He had made many gains in all areas only to be discharged from the project because of his age (7). My son was left with no services or supports when the program ended for him.
During that time Matthew went through many stages of anxiety and depression. He could not understand why he wasn’t getting the supports and services anymore. Not only did the termination of the project affect him, it also affected his younger brother and us his parents.
One cannot open a book and start creating a chapter of one’s life and then close the book, leaving one confused and feeling alone. Once again I feel like the book is being closed, the new chapter we are creating will be lost.
Money spent now can be money saved in the future.