The Wellness Center’s innovative structure requires a dedicated set of volunteers. 100% of the funds they raise go to benefit those struggling with medical ailments. This means that no one is paid to participate and all necessary expenses, such as office supplies, come out of the pockets of the volunteers.
Committee volunteers began the formation of Cain’s Quest – Canada’s Longest Snowmobile Endurance Race. The 1200 km race across Labrador was piloted in 2006 which has since been extended to 2500 km and it has quickly become a premiere extreme sporting event.
The Community Centre Alliance in St. John’s is taking an innovative approach to reducing poverty in the community neighbourhoods in which it works. CCA has taken a globally known model of micro-lending, typically used to address poverty in some of the world’s poorest nations, and adapted it to the needs of low income residents of St. John’s.
How did one organization employ individuals with chronic unemployment issues, make it easier for people to recycle, have a real impact in the waste reduction efforts of a city and catch the attention of environmental businesses across the country?
The Irish Loop, located on the southern portion of the Avalon Peninsula is home to 19 rural communities that together report a population of about 8,400. Community leaders throughout the region see huge potential in the “Irish Heart of Newfoundland and Labrador” – its close proximity to St. John's, idyllic setting, many services and amenities that include ecological reserves, archaeological and historic sites, and a world-class hiking trail.
No program has had more outreach in communities large and small than the Community Service Component of the Student Work and Service Program (SWASP). While not a new initiative – it has been operating since 1994 – its unique approach and continuous innovation has helped thousands of young people gain career experience in their own community, reduce their student debt load, get exposure to the community sector and learn about the important contribution of volunteers to the quality of life of communities.
Vibrant Communities St. John’s is a multi-sector community-based initiative which seeks to reduce poverty by working collaboratively with community organizations, all levels of government, businesses and especially with people who live with low income/poverty.
From St. Anthony all the way to their new location in Bird Cove the Northern Peninsula Family Resource Centre is making a difference for families in rural Newfoundland and Labrador.
The Community Youth Network in Harbour Breton (CYN-HB) is full of ideas about how to enhance young people’s participation in the social and economic development of their town. Over the past decade, this vibrant organization has pioneered intergenerational learning, early childhood education, economic development, leadership building, recreation, and support services in this small community of just under 2000 people.
Once a week for the past 5 years the Stella Burry Inclusion Choir has been getting together to sing, practice and perform. The 40-member, non-audition choir is made up of staff participants and volunteers in Stella Burry programs.
Innovation is often born out of necessity, in an effort to be more efficient or come up with new products, programs or ways of doing business.
Eastern Edge Gallery is a local, nonprofit, artist-run gallery, located on Harbour Drive in St. John’s. For the past 12 years, the artists have been developing and delivering a 24-hour art marathon to display talented artists from our own province and across the country.
The word “innovate” comes from the Latin innovatus, which means to renew or change. Often, when considering how we might improve we focus on the renew aspect; but innovation is not always about a new idea.
The ordinary folks at Ordinary Spokes are making an effort to change that perception and inspiring the citizens of St. John’s to take charge of their transportation needs.
Part museum, part learning annex and certainly a tourist attraction, The French Shore Historical Society is launching the Centre for Textile Art on July 26th at the French Shore Cultural Centre in Conche on the province’s Northern Peninsula.
More than sixty people, ages 4 to 80 +, are eating better for less thanks to the Baccalieu Trail Seniors Outreach Services (under the umbrella of the Seniors Resource Centre NL) to learn how to cook nutritious meals on a budget. Between January and May 2010, the Baccalieu Trail Seniors Outreach Services carried out five six-week Healthy Cooking Program sessions for seniors, young mothers, and children. Working in partnership with the Trinity Conception Family Resource Centre, Carbonear, the Baccalieu Trail Seniors Outreach Services brought their nutritional show on the road to Carbonear, Harbour Grace, Winterton, Bay Roberts, and Greens Harbour.
Individuals with complex needs face a multitude of issues and are often dealing with several agencies to access services and supports. A lack of coordination amongst these agencies can result in service gaps and even more barriers for those who need the most help.
According to a 2008 research report, individuals with complex needs are facing a revolving door of services in the St. John’s area and some basic needs, such as housing, are not being met. Delivery agencies decided that things needed to change.
Local charity looking for superheroes
Finding enthusiastic volunteers to canvass for donations is not always easy for many charities. However, those donations are vital to organizations that are providing essential services, helping those in need and increasing our quality of life. Volunteers who raise money for our local communities are the unsung heroes of many charities and nonprofit organizations. With that in mind, Easter Seals NL is giving its volunteers a chance to become a superhero for Newfoundlanders and Labradorians with physical disabilities.
Everyone has skills to contribute, and good ideas can come from anywhere. That’s the philosophy of the Public Legal Information Association of Newfoundland and Labrador (PLIAN), a nonprofit agency in St. John’s dedicated to educating people about legal issues. Now in its 27th year of operations, PLIAN, the Newfoundland and Labrador component of Public Legal Education Association of Canada (PLEAC), offers a diverse set of community programs and events with a goal of increasing access to justice.
Unique fundraiser ‘growing’ each year
Would women go an entire month without shaving their legs? What if it was for a good cause? Medical students Kathleen Callanan and Angelique Myles thought so and they approached Planned Parenthood NL – Sexual Health Centre with an idea.
Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) is the largest student-run, non-profit organization in the world. SIFE Memorial, the team based at Memorial University, has a focus of affecting global change through local solutions. Many of its projects are characterized by community outreach and development, establishing financial literacy and inspiring entrepreneurship.
By Chandra Kavanagh
On November 29th and 30th of 2011, the Provincial Wellness Advisory Council, in association with The Newfoundland and Labrador Public Heal
Planned Parenthood - Newfoundland and Labrador Sexual Heath Centre has been keeping our community healthy, informed and connected for many years. As of late a wave of innovation in this organization has lead to the successful coordination of volunteer run programs that are having a serious impact. One such program is Camp Eclipse.
Newfoundland and Labrador rural communities are facing times where demographic trends such as out migration and an ageing population demand new and avant-garde programming to meet community needs and enhance the quality of life for its citizens. The Father Val Power Learning Centre Complex (FVPLC) in St. Mary’s, NL has taken a holistic and innovative approach in providing its residents, most of whom are seniors, with a wealth of opportunities to learn and participate fully in community life.
Consumers’ Health Awareness Network Newfoundland and Labrador (CHANNAL) works to combat the isolation that often surrounds people living with mental illness. Because of the stigma surrounding mental health issues, individuals with a mental illness often feel lonely and ashamed. This is part of the reason why although one in five Canadians will experience mental illnesses in their lifetime, only one third of those affected seek help
The greatest good you can do for another is not just to share your riches but to reveal to him his own. ~Benjamin Disraeli
Everyone has something to contribute to community life.
Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is one of the world’s most well-known and far-reaching charities.
There’s a common story going around about today’s youth: that they’re busy and self-absorbed, noses buried in a textbook and hands frantically texting all day long. Kids like this, or so the story goes, are too busy with themselves to get involved in their communities. Thankfully, nothing could be further from the truth.
Innovative ideas sometimes emerge from devastating news. This was certainly the case with Geoff Eaton and Young Adult Cancer Canada. In 1998, at 22 years of age, Geoff was diagnosed with cancer. During this time the internet was rapidly increasing in popularity and Geoff decided to set up a mass email list to keep his friends and family up to date on the course of his treatments. Throughout his treatment Geoff noticed that he often fell through the cracks. He was not young enough to benefit from any of the programs offered for children with cancer. Nor did he feel that his needs were being met in cancer programs and support groups for adults—they mostly catered to retirees and other older patients with very different concerns and life situations.
Community organizations are constantly looking for new ways to meet their mission, recruit new members and spread the word about the work they do. In the past few years, it has become common practice for organizations to develop websites, embrace social media, communicate via online newsletters - utilize every technology available to get the message out.