Early childhood intervention services support many families and young children with developmental delays and disabilities throughout BC. Families of children with disabilities and staff working with them and with their children need education, training and knowledge about disabilities so that children develop to their full potential and are successfully included in all community settings. These families and children are served in homes, child care, community settings, early childhood programs, recreation, and support services. Successful inclusion means that the developmental needs of children are met and that all staff serving them have the necessary attitudes, values, training and knowledge to support the families and to meet their special needs. The Partnerships Training Modules provide this training and knowledge within a rich context of positive attitude and values about families and disability.
The goals of the Project are to:
- Support ongoing training in communities throughout the province to increase the level of awareness, skills and knowledge of service providers working with children birth to 6 years of age with various disabilities and their families in community settings.
- Provide a training structure that promotes partnerships and connections in the community amongst service providers that continues to enhance the collaborative model of partnering.
- Deliver training modules that enhance accessibility and are responsive to communities needs throughout the Province.
- Create a training framework that supports new modules in the future
The Partnerships Project Training Modules were initially written in 1999 and contained seven different training modules. These Modules were used throughout B.C. to provide training sessions in communities to staff supporting children aged birth to six with disabilities in community settings.
In 2005 there was renewed interest from community groups to update and revise the Partnerships training materials, and support the continuation of community training. A Steering Committee, comprised of Infant Development /Aboriginal Infant Development /Supported Child Development Consortium members, Early Intervention Therapists and government representatives was established to review the Partnership Projects and develop future directions for training.
In 2006, the Steering Committee received grant funds from the Ministry of Children and Family Development to revise and pilot the new Modules, and to provide training to new Facilitators who then present the training sessions in communities. Currently the Steering Committee determines the ongoing coordination and administration of the Partnerships Project.
The Partnerships Project was funded in 2006, by the Ministry of Children and Family Development.
During the Renewal Phase of the Project, The Developmental Disabilities Association (DDA) sponsored and oversaw the Steering Committee comprised of a government representative and the Provincial Programs of:
- Infant Development
- Aboriginal Infant Development
- Supported Child Development
- Pediatric Therapies
With the Renewal Initiative Phase of the Project nearing completion, ongoing coordination and administration of the Partnerships Project was under the direction of the Comox Valley Child Development Association (CVCDA).
In June of 2014 the coordination and administration of the Partnerships Project moved to a new Host Agency, the BC Association of Aboriginal Friendship Centre. The Project Steering Committee continues to provide direction and guidance to the Host agency and is comprised of representatives from:
- Aboriginal Infant Development: Regional Advisor reps.
- Aboriginal Supported Child Development: Provincial Advisor and Regional Advisor reps.
- Supported Child Development: Regional Advisor reps
- Infant Development: Regional Advisor reps
- Host Agency representative
- Pediatric Therapies: SLP, OT and PT therapists
- MCFD representatives
- Project Manager
The Partnerships Training Modules have been revised in a Renewal Initiative Phase collaboration with a Steering Committee comprised of members of the Infant Development/Supported Child Development Consortium, Developmental Disabilities Association (DDA), the writers of the Training Modules and a Project Manager.
The Module Writers:
Creating Inclusive Child Care Settings: Debra Mayer, Director, SpeciaLink The National Centre For Child Care Inclusion Addressing Challenging Behavior: Paul Malette, CBI Consultants Communication: Anne Gardner, SLP, Margaret Chesterman, SLP, Deanne Zeidler, SLP Promoting Function and Participation in the Early Years: Judit Spence, PT, Susan Gmitroski, OT Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder: Vicki Mulligan Supporting Children who are Deaf and Hard of Hearing: BC Family Hearing Resource Centre: Kristyn Payne, Tamara Pelletier S-LP(C) Family Centred Practice: Angie Kwok, Liz Robinson, Deborah Greene Aboriginal consultant and writer: Monique Gray Smith Editor: Deborah Greene Project Manager: Elizabeth Cox
Steering Committee (2014-2015)
Tanya Brown, ASCD Coordinator, Coast Fraser North Region
Lisa Martin, Ministry of Children and Family Development
Elizabeth Cox, Project Manager
Nadine Gagne-L’Hirondelle, ASCD Provincial Advisor
Elaine Zamardi, Partnerships Project Coordinator
Juanita Hagman, Northwest Supported Child Development Program
Shelley Anderson, Infant Development Consultant IDP Advisor – Northern Region
Kirsten Forestell, North Shore Supported Child Development Program
Yvonne Kwok, Coordinator, Supported Child Development Program
Zoe Watt, Speech Language Pathologist
Karen Jensen, Consultant Supported Child Development Program
The Partnerships Steering Committee would like to acknowledge and thank:
- The Sponsor, Developmental Disabilities Association (DDA)
- The Ministry of Children and Family Development (MCFD) for the grant funding provided in support of this renewal initiative
- The Project Team for their committed work, and the following people who supported the development of this project.
- Website designers John Robertson and Josiah Jost
- The program consultants who participated as members of the working group and provided feedback and suggestions to the writers.
- The writers, who trained Facilitators in the Modules and the Adult Education Trainers who trained the Instructional Principles Workshop
- The trained Facilitators who committed time to coordinate and offer pilot training sessions in their communities during the Pilot Phase
- The community agencies that supported the organization and delivery of the pilot training sessions in their communities during the Pilot Phase