Inclusion BC

UPDATE – April 2021

Dear Readers,
In the April 2021 E-Update you will find valuable information about the Federal and BC 2021 Budgets, upcoming events, welcoming new Inclusion BC members and staff, member features and more. 
If you have any questions about the content, please email Communications Manager Claire Inkster at

Budgets 2021

Watch a video of the 2021 BC Budget
presented by Minister Selina Robinson

Response to the 2021 Federal & BC Government Budgets

This week the Federal and BC Governments released their 2021 Budgets. Inclusion BC was pleased the Federal budget focused on quality child care, knowing it will support an inclusive child care plan to unfold in our province. Though we were disappointed to see an additional 3-4 years delay on the implementation of a National Disability Benefit. 
Similar to the Federal budget, the BC budget emphasized pandemic recovery, health care, and universal child care. The highlight was the $367 million of new funding allocated to Community Living BC over the three-year fiscal plan. A low point was the absence of a solid investment for the implementation of the new Children and Youth with Support Needs (CYSN) Framework.
As Inclusion BC meets with Members of Parliament and the Legislative Assembly in the coming year, we will continue to seek clarity on the ways people with disabilities and their families will be fully included in the national and provincial pandemic recovery plans and in the years to come.
You can read the Federal 2021 Budget HERE and the BC 2021 Budget HERE.


Text: Save the date. Annual General Meeting. Tuesday, June 22, 2021. From 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm. A Virtual Zoom Meeting. Image: a blue background with a yellow star bursting out of a white and red handheld speaker.

Notice for the 2021 Inclusion BC Annual General Meeting

Please save the date for the Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, at 4:30 pm. With the continuation of restrictions on in-person gatherings, this year’s AGM will again be held virtually on Zoom. An official Notice for the AGM containing further details, information, and relevant materials will be distributed soon.
If you have questions, please connect with us at or call 604-777-9100.
Text: Virtual Learning Series. Logos: Inclusion BC. Image: Illustration of a person with dark brown skin standing with a laptop in their hand. An illustration of a person with cinnamon coloured skin standing with an iPad in their hand. An illustration of a person with beige skin sitting with a laptop in their lap.

Virtual Learning Series: Growing Capacity and Building Inclusive Communities

Over the past 12 months, Inclusion BC collaborated with our community partners to host a Virtual Learning Series. The 2021 winter term features included a Youth Employment Summit, the four-part film series Disrupting Misconceptions and Forging Pathways Forward for Students with Developmental Disabilities, and an advocacy panel on Supporting Transition to Life After High School. 
Inclusion BC would like to thank all of our presenters as well as our wonderful co-hosts Self Advocates of Semiahmoo and UNITI.

The Virtual Learning Series would not have been possible without the ongoing generous support from our sponsors the Province of BC, the Public Guardian and Trustee of BC, and the BC CEO Network. Thank you for helping to build strong and inclusive communities where everyone belongs! 

You can read more about the Virtual Learning Series HERE and if you miss any of the sessions you can watch each of them HERE.

Growing Our Community

Welcoming New Members

We are delighted to share Inclusion BC has two new federation members!
Delta Housing Be Mine Society is a non-profit member-based organization working within the community of Delta to create supportive, affordable, and inclusive housing options for adults with varying abilities. Their work spans advocacy and public policy for inclusive housing solutions, member education on living a full life within the community of Delta, and a news forum sharing information related to inclusive housing.
Eclipse Foundation for Individualized Supports is a new agency located in the East and West Kootenays dedicated to providing safe and secure support environments that encourage growth, improve quality of life, and provide opportunities for developing meaningful relationships and experiences. Their organization offers assistance for residential services, community inclusion, employment supports, behaviour supports, as well as support coordination.
On behalf of everyone at Inclusion BC, we are excited that your organizations are joining our network of members. We look forward to collaborating and working together creating inclusive communities and enhancing the lives of children, youth, and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their families.

Welcoming New Staff

The Inclusion BC staff team has seen some changes this year. Danielle Kelliher and Dawn Steele are each embarking on new journeys. From everyone at Inclusion BC, thank you both for always bringing your passion and dedication towards advocating for the rights and opportunities of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and their families.  
We are also pleased to share that in the spring of 2021 both Renee MacDermid and Claire Inkster joined our team. Welcome to Inclusion BC!
Image: picture of a smiling caucasian female with grey shoulder length hair. The picture is from her shoulders to the top her head.
Renee MacDermid has spent most of her career working in the non-profit sector in countries around the world and, as the Revenue Development Officer, she brings to Inclusion BC a breadth of experience in building relationships between passionate supporters and organizations eager to make the world a better place.
Image: picture of a smiling caucasian female with short purple and grey hair. The picture is from her shoulders to the top her head.
As the Communications Manager, Claire Inkster supports the communication strategies for a broad range of initiatives at Inclusion BC. She brings with her a passion for listening, learning, and synthesizing complex information into clear informative communication, and believes the focus of her work is to amplify community inclusion, social justice, and civil rights for all human beings.

Inclusion BC Member Features

Image: picture of a smiling caucasian female with dark brown hair pulled back in a ponytail. The picture is from her shoulders to the top her head.
Image: picture of a smiling caucasian male with short dark brown hair and dark brown glasses. The picture is from his shoulders to the top his head.

Appointments to the Minister’s New Advisory Council for Children and Youth with Support Needs

Inclusion BC would like to congratulate Angela Clancy, Executive Director at Family Support Institute of BC, and Joshua Myers, Executive Director at BC Center for Ability on their appointment to the Minister’s Advisory Council on Children and Youth with Support Needs (CYSN MAC). 
In her announcement Mitzi Dean, Minister of Children and Family Development, and chair of the CYSN MAC noted:
We were fortunate to receive an overwhelming number of applicants – from parents to advocates and self-advocates, to service providers, agencies and more – each with their own story and experiences, their own areas of knowledge and expertise. The experience and expertise of our 16-member council will be crucial in our efforts to better support children and youth, and ensure families are at the centre of those improvements.
You can read the BC Provincial Government press release HERE
Text: Issue No. 1 Community Mental Health and Wellness Newsletter.

Take Time to Take Care

Caring about mental wellness is a gift for ourselves and for those around us. UNITI has started the “Community Mental Health and Wellness Newsletter” which will focus on accessible community resources for well-being. You can read Issue No.1 HERE

Information & Resources

Appointment of Public Guardian and Trustee of B.C. 

Following a national competitive process and a subsequent appointment recommendation by the competition committee to the Lieutenant Governor in Council, Dana Kingsbury has been appointed Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia by Order in Council effective May 1, 2021, for a 6-year term.
Inclusion BC would like to welcome Dana Kingsbury to her new appointment as Public Guardian and Trustee of B.C. and offer our most sincere congratulations.

We would also like to thank Catherine Romanko for her years of service protecting the rights and interests of vulnerable British Columbians. During her time as Public Guardian and Trustee of B.C. Catherine touched many lives, and she will be greatly missed. 

BC People First is Hiring

BC People First is looking to hire a part-time Self-Advocate & Member Liaison. This is a contract position ending March 2022. The ideal candidate is an experienced self-advocate and optimistic people person, located anywhere in British Columbia.

Applications are being accepted until Tuesday, May 4, 2021. To learn more about the position you can visit the BC People First website HERE.

Rebate for Accessible Home Adaptions

Recently the B.C. provincial government, through BC Housing, has improved and renamed the Home Adaptations for Independence (HAFI) program that assists seniors and people with disabilities with the cost of making adaptions to their homes for independent living. 
The new program, called the BC Rebate for Accessible Home Adaptations (BC RAHA), has made a number of changes such as removing the need to obtain a quote for standard accessibility adaptations; ensuring more equitable access to funding by region and type of home adaptation; and increasing access to occupational therapists or other qualified professionals for assessments.
You can read the B.C. Government press release HERE and learn more about the rebate from BC Housing HERE.

Canadian Academy of Health Sciences Assessment on Autism Engagement Process

The Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS) has been selected by the Canadian government to conduct an assessment on Autism to help build a National Autism Strategy. CAHS has started its community engagement process and is looking to connect with the Autistic community.
A community conversation for organizations in B.C. will be taking place on Tuesday, April 27, 2021, at 11:30 am PDT (2:30 pm EDT) via Zoom. You can learn more and register HERE

The Engagement Hub is a place where individuals and families can share their views on Autism through a survey and discussion forum. The Engagement Hub is open until May 31, 2021.


Staying Informed & Connected

Inclusion BC is helping people stay informed and connected during the pandemic.
Advocacy support Inclusion BC provides free advocacy support to families of children and youth with diverse learning needs, adults with intellectual disabilities and their families who need our help. This could mean connecting you with resources in your community or supporting you to advocate for the services you need. Our advocates are skilled, experienced and knowledgeable. If you need advocacy support, please email, or call 1-844-488-4321.
Education Over the past 12 months Inclusion BC collaborated with our community partners to host a Virtual Learning Series to keep people informed during the pandemic. You can learn more about, and watch, the series HERE.
News and Updates Our #CovidDisability blog includes updates and resources on issues relating to COVID-19 and people with disabilities.

A World Where Everyone Belongs

Inclusion BC’s work is made possible thanks to you

A warm thanks to our generous supporters and Circle of Friends members; together, we create a world where everyone belongs.

Please consider joining our Circle of Friends program or making a single donation today.
Copyright © 2021 Inclusion BC, All rights reserved.

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