May 19, 2020 | Memo to Families [PDF]

Dear Ongwanada families,

As the province of Ontario begins the process of re-opening from the COVID-19 pandemic, we realize that you are likely wondering when Ongwanada will begin reopening its services. While I would love to be able to give you a definitive answer, the reality is that I cannot do so yet.

I understand this has been a difficult time for everyone and the suspension of programs and family visits has placed additional stress on the families of the individual that we support. I can only ask for your patience at this time as we begin considering what our programs and services may look like in future in order to comply with public health and government guidelines for reopening, once we are permitted to do so.

One thing that we do know is that COVID-19 is going to be a public health concern for the foreseeable future with a very real possibility of new waves of infection circulating in our community. With this in mind, we are carefully considering and planning how we can reopen programs while continuing to ensure the health and safety of the individuals that we support, as well as our staff.

Reopening programs will be a very gradual and phased progress and many of our programs and services will likely look very different than what they did only a few short weeks ago, as we take into account the ongoing need for such things as physical distancing, restrictions on large group gatherings and requirements for enhanced cleaning and disinfection. Some of our supports and services many also more from in-person to virtual in nature.

It is important to recognize that there many be times when we need to retreat or suspend programs once again based on experiences or to follow public health guidance.

Please rest assured that Ongwanada and its staff are committed to the people that we support and when we do begin to reopen programs, it will only be once we are satisfied that we can do so safely.

We will continue to keep you informed as we slowly return to a more normal mode of operation.

Thank you for your patience,

Alastair Lamb
CEO, Ongwanada


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