“If there was ever another opportunity to broaden my leadership skills, I would jump at the chance,” says Jamie Gore, Network Coordinator with PLAN Edmonton.
Gore is referring to the Leadership Institute for Developmental Services, a virtual training program facilitated by the Canadian Centre for Caregiving Excellence (CCCE).
In November 2022, CCCE offered the first iteration of the program for 40 emerging leaders within development services.
“The wealth of information renewed and inspired me to keep doing what I do in advocating for people with disabilities,” says Gore, who works with families to build a support network for a loved one with a disability.
Advocates and leaders like Gore are the impetus behind the Institute. “In the next decade, we’ll see about 70 per cent of leaders in developmental services retire,” says Liv Mendelsohn, Executive Director of CCCE. “With that kind of experience and knowledge leaving the sector, we need to train emerging leaders to help them succeed.”
Addressing the need now builds a strong leadership pipeline – and provides a depth of training many organizations cannot afford.
“The Leadership Institute for Developmental Services touches on different areas,” says Mendelsohn, “including frontline and managerial competencies, as well as how their work connects to the larger context of policy and advocacy for people with disabilities.”
For Gore, another benefit is connecting with peers. “Every month, I continue to meet with my small group to check in and celebrate successes,” she says.
Such support is critical. “Care providers are often undervalued and unseen,” Gore says. “Our goal with the Institute is to deepen competencies and connections, as well as develop a path for those who want to make this their lifetime career.”