New community connections increasing social awareness

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Growing relationship expanding BACI’s presence in Burnaby
Monday December 12, 2011 — Ryan Rogers

What began as a week-long art show in public libraries in Burnaby to celebrate the International Day for Persons with Disabilities could be leading to a new relationship where art created by members of Artists Helping Artists (AHA) are on display throughout the year.

Branch manager of the Tommy Douglas Public Library Roberta Summersgill said the show is all about helping and representing the community, and they’re happy to provide a platform for AHA, an inclusive community-based artists co-operative supported by the Burnaby Association for Community Inclusion (BACI).

The relationship with city libraries is a result of BACI’s collaboration with the Access and Inclusion Advisory Committee and is an example of BACI creating a presence around inclusion this fall.

In November at the BACI Ball, the inaugural presentation of the Inclusion through Innovation Awards not only acknowledged community members for innovative ideas and outstanding work, but served as an inspiration and model for others when considering creating opportunities for people of all abilities in the workplace or community.

Executive director Richard Faucher said at the time that the awards help BACI become a convenor of collaboration that can lead to innovation, with the awards showcasing the good work being done in the community.

“If we want to solve our social problems, we’re going to need to collaborate and not just in the social service sector, we’re going to have to expand to bring everybody to the table to talk about inclusion in a different way,” he said.

BACI had success with inviting community stakeholders into the discussion during its strategic planning, where community members of many types stepped up to share their thoughts on the association.

“The more we reach out and try to engage, the more people who will be engaged,” he said. “BACI sees itself as a real place where we can convene people to discuss things that are important like inclusion, and hopefully expand to all people.”

If you have a story you would like to share with the BACI Blast, please contact the newsroom at 800-294-0051, ext. 29, or e-mail ryan(at)axiomnews.ca.

If you have feedback on this story, please call the newsroom at 800-294-0051, ext. 29, or e-mail ryan(at)axiomnews.ca.

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