Events/Gatherings (2021-2022)


A virtual gathering of people, families, independent facilitators, and other allies.

warm-and-cozy-1975215_1920 (1)Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022 from 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Representatives from the Community and Developmental Services Policy Branch of the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS) shared a short presentation on Journey to Belonging: Choice and Inclusion, and their reform plans.  A question and answer followed.  A good mix of participants came together for the conversation: individuals, families, independent facilitators, and direct service provider allies, with the majority being families. As usual those who attended brought their snacks or even their supper to the gathering, and favourite drinks as well.  Event flyer:  Coffee & Convo, Feb 16, 2022.

HAVE YOUR SAY!  Wednesday, January 19, 2022
A virtual gathering for citizens living with a developmental disability and their communication support/ally.

Facilitated by Kory Earle. Twenty-nine people participated in the discussions on the following topics:

  • How funding, like Passport, can assist you with more choice and control in your life. How it helps you live your life as an adult citizen?
  • What your goals are, or your vision for life. What support would you need to take a step forward as you think about your future.

People who participated had great ideas about what they would like to purchase with their funding, and what would assist them – especially during the pandemic. With not paying support workers, and not being able to go places, they had identified some ideas personalized to their lives and needs.  People shared openly their personal vision or their goals, and what they wanted from their lives. It was an excellent and dynamic discussion. IFCO now has some work to do to address issues people brought forward.  Many thanks to the volunteers who assisted with the gathering and the break-out groups! The link to the flyer follows: Have Your Say, Jan 19, 2022


A virtual gathering of people, families, independent facilitators, and other allies.

Thursday, December 2, 2021 – 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

notepad-g1daff118f_1920Having a Vision! The focus at this gathering: the importance of people having a vision for the future, and being supported by family, friends and others to work toward that vision. Stories presentations at the beginning, included examples of different people’s life vision and their goals. These stories demonstrated how having a vision made a difference in what people were choosing to do with their life, how they used their supports and funding, and what they were also doing to prepare for when they could contribute more as things opened up with the pandemic. A main take-away: choosing those things that  lead upward toward your vision! The presentations included young adults in high school, and others who had been out of school for years. Many thanks to the ‘story-tellers’ who so willingly agreed to the sharing of their stories and/or visions: Brenda, Lisa, Cody and Shawna!

Event organizers wanted to bring some encouragement and ideas that would help folks to work on what they wanted for their future. Doing work around goals and a vision helps people identify and get clearer about things. Some of those things may require individualized funding to purchase a supporter or other things for a person to achieve, and others will not require funding.

In the conversations following the short family presentations, individuals and families shared their own vision, as well as what they were doing during the pandemic to keep it going. Others appreciated learning for the first time about the importance of creating a vision with their family member. Those who already had a vision, felt that being reminded about the importance, taking another look and updating things was a good idea. The link to the flyer follows: Coffee & Conversation, Dec 2,2021 Flyer

Two documents presented at the event are available for download at the following links: From Visions to Actions – Dec. 2, 2021   and   What is a Vision, IFCO, 2021

HAVE YOUR SAY!  Monday, October 4, 2021 
A virtual gathering for citizens living with a developmental disability and their communication support/ally.


Kory Earle, facilitated a discussion at this gathering with more than 25 folks. This included: people who have a developmental disability, those who supported people with their voice and unique communication (friend, facilitator, family member), and IFCO volunteers who assisted with small break-out groups.  Participants talked freely about their day-to-day supports and how things had changed since the pandemic. They also shared what would be needed for them to have a better quality of life.   Topics included: not being able to participate and contribute in their communities because of shut downs and to stay safe; having a shortage of support/support workers; missing being with people; trying to make the best of being home and how difficult it was; the issue of the poverty they faced with not enough ODSP, and much more.  People also shared a bit about what they would need to improve their lives.  

IFCO is thankful to those that gave their time to come out to this gathering and offered their experiences. Many thanks also to the communication allies and families for the respect given to the person they were supporting to have their voices be heard in the discussions. Participants asked Kory about hosting another gathering so they could have further conversations.  Here is the flyer from the October gathering:  Have Your Say Oct. 4 2021

Two virtual gatherings for people, families, independent facilitators, and other allies.

  • Thurs, August 19, 2021, 6:30-8:00 pmcoffee-2306471_1920
  • Wed, September 15, 2021, 6:30-8:00 pm

Invitations went out to individuals, families, friends and allies of the Individualized Funding Coalition for Ontario to attend a virtual Coffee and Conversations gathering in August and/or September, 2021.  People were invited to come learn about: the foundational work by IFCO leaders; the refreshing of the IFCO website including a glance at some of the newer pages; presentations made at a recent Ontario Independent Facilitation Network (OIFN) Reflective Practice and Windsor-Essex Family Network’s Annual General Meeting; meetings with allies; and much more.

Conversation #1 in August also included sharing historical work of the Coalition. Conversation #2 in September reviewed some of the same topics, and built on them. Over 40 folks participated (people, families and partners).  Conversations at both gatherings were vibrant as individuals and families openly shared about some of the issues they were facing with their funding and supports, and brought forward questions. Allies and others provided ideas and tips, and/or offered to get answers later. A summary of the ‘conversations’ with answers to questions was shared with participants after the event. It was later added as an Appendix to the ‘IFCO/Fall News Brief’. Both documents are available at the following links:  IFCO Message, Fall News Brief, Sept. 2021  and  Appendix – IFCO Coffee & Conversation Summary