March 2021 Newsletter
In December 2019, the REALM community celebrated our annual holiday gathering. Little did we know, it was going to be the last time most of us would be together in person for awhile. We began 2020 full of excitement for the year to come. Fast forward to March and a global pandemic. Panic set in.
Isolation and loneliness are already an epidemic for many people with disabilities. What would happen during a pandemic? How long would it last? What would be the impact on Centres? Networks? REALM?
We learned a few things. Our community is strong and resilient. We switched to video conferencing and our work continued. In fact, not one meeting was cancelled. Throughout 2020, we welcomed new volunteers and facilitators, all without meeting in person. Even in a pandemic, Centres still have goals and dreams, and networks are making them happen.
During the pandemic, networks stepped in to solve some incredible situations such as meeting food and grocery needs and figuring out plans when home care services were interrupted or cancelled. In addition to regular monthly network meetings, we began monthly wellness checks and informal Zoom Chat Rooms. We delivered more than 70 goodie bags in December and in January we hosted virtual bingo.
It has not all been easy, and we haven’t always got it right. But Covid19 could not take away our spirit, philosophy, or values. We believe in the power of connection and are proud of our collective ability to learn new and creative ways to stay connected.
Maybe the Walt Disney Company said it best,
“Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”
In 2019, we began a three phase organizational review to ensure REALM sustainability and growth. Feedback was clear, REALM must develop online network development programs so that more people, in more locations, can create personal volunteer support networks in less time.
Phase 3 is developing professionally made, accessible videos, worksheets and supporting technology structures for online programs. We began fundraising in late 2020 and have reached about 60% of our goal. We are still accepting donations and for all donations of $250 or greater, your name will appear in the video credits as a producer.
Did you know, SGI rebate cheques will average $285 this spring? If you are not sure what to do with your rebate cheque, how about helping us create an accessible video library?
It is a New REALM
We have a new website! www.realmfoundation.ca. Please let us know what you think. Thank you to Logan Seidlik Creative & Design for guiding us through the process.
Ok, truth is, we are newbies to Instagram and are just getting started with help from our wonderful volunteer and Chief Social Connector, Ryan Serbu.
How can you help?
Visit our website, realmfoundation.ca and click the donate button.
Mail a cheque to:
315 Victoria Avenue,
Regina, SK S4N 0P5
Send an eTransfer to firstname.lastname@example.org – but do not forget to put your email address in the comments of the EFT so that we know where to send your charitable donation tax receipt.
*Charitable tax receipts will be issued on all donations greater than $20
We are proud of the REALM community and thank each of you, from the bottom of our heart, for being part of it.
A special acknowledgement goes out to:
South Saskatchewan Community Foundation Smart & Caring Fund and Emergency Covid19 Funding
Lorne and Evelyn Johnson Foundation
These are some of the things we’ve missed in the past year: