June was Aphasia Awareness Month and as part of our goal to raise awareness about aphasia and connect with our community of friends and supporters, we were everywhere this past summer! The Aphasia Institute kicked off Aphasia Awareness Month with an article in the Zoomer Media newsletter to spread awareness about aphasia and Walk, Talk ‘n Roll. Please visit http://www.everythingzoomer.com/know-aphasia/#.VCWOGvldXVV to read the full article. A big thank you to Zoomer Media for their support!
In June 2014, seven of our amazing volunteers were recognized with Ontario Volunteer Service Awards. The awards were handed out by the Ontario Minister of Citizenship and Immigration during a special ceremony at the Isabel Bader Theatre, downtown Toronto. The Volunteer Service Award recognizes volunteers for their continuous years of commitment and service to an organization. We want to thank all our volunteers for their tremendous dedication to the Aphasia Institute and congratulate these seven award recipients: 15 Years of continuous service: Mary Botterell 15 Years of continuous service: Judy Moore 10 Years of continuous service: Norma McVicar 5 Years of continuous services: Marilyn Berger 5 Years of continuous service: Marilyn Shama 5 Years of continuous service: Carol Pratap 2 Years (Youth recipient): Shinthuja Wijayasri
Having tasted fame with last year’s production of My Fair Lady, we are taking to the stage once again this June for Grease … the Musical! Rehearsals are in full swing and we are ready to enthral audiences with our performance that has kept the cast busy singing and dancing for 6 months. One of the primary goals for this program is that severity of aphasia not be a barrier to full participation. It is the role of program staff of the Aphasia Institute to enable this participation through creative and innovative solutions. Aphasia-friendly scripts, pictographic materials, drawings of stage layout and positions: the focus is to communicate the show to the audience through whatever means available. The pride and commitment shown by the cast to this project has been infectious, making this musical a true community event. The cast are seen humming in the hallways, foot-tapping at the tables and practicing together between programs. Creation of video clips to whet the community’s appetite also serves to inspire people, showing them that life really is larger than aphasia. To
On June 2, 2013, the Aphasia Institute proudly presents MY FAIR LADY, starring our very own members! In this video, cast member Tita rehearses one of her solos as Eliza Doolittle. Click on the video to watch her perform “I Could Have Danced All Night” and stay tuned for more information about this exciting production.
Cast members of Aphasia Institute’s upcoming production of MY FAIR LADY presented a sneak preview of the show to our other members, staff and volunteers. Here is their performance of “Just You Wait.” Julie Andrews, eat your heart out!
This year at our holiday party, our members and their families had a chance to connect with other members, volunteers, and staff. We had over 170 people attend the party and were delighted by the entertainment the song writing club and drumming group provided for us.
The Aphasia Institute will be presenting the third annual Communicative Access Award to a deserving recipient at our Annual General Meeting, September 24th 2012. The Communicative Access Award was launched in 2010 in recognition of outstanding contributions to reducing barriers to full life participation for those living with aphasia. Past recipients are Jan Roadhouse, for her initiative and innovation in starting the first Aphasia Camp in Canada, and Barbara Collier, recognized for her advocacy and extensive work in the field of Augumentative and Alternative Communication or AAC. If you would like to nominate an individual for this award, please send a short email explaining why you are putting forward your nomination. Please email to Tara Webster (firstname.lastname@example.org).
On Tuesday June 19th, we had our annual agency picnic at Kew Gardens in Toronto. Over 50 staff and members came out and we all had some fun in the sun together playing games, feasting on our impressive potluck spread, and of course, drum circles (see videos below)! Going out to parks and having picnics is an activity most people take for granted, but can be challenging for families with aphasia, and it was an incredible experience for all involved. Come on out and join us next year! Click here to see more photos from the day.
All our amazing newsletters with incredible member stories are now available to download! see: http://www.aphasia.ca/building-bridges-newsletters/
We had an amazing day here last week. In celebration of St. Patrick’s day, we had an Irish Dance troupe give us an amazing performance. They can be reached here: http://www.gilchristirishdance.com/
Join us on March 28th for our Health and Wellness Fair!
For details, click here