Archive for 2013

Executive Director’s Address

The following address was made to the Board of Directors, staff, volunteers and media at Community Living Kirkland Lake’s Annual General Meeting in June:

Here’s to the Board volunteers, those dedicated people who believe in all work and no pay … although they have asked several times for a raise!

Throughout my 25 years as an Executive Director, I have never had such a dedicated and truly committed group of individuals who form the Board of Directors.

Due to the vast knowledge, expertise and commitment that our Board has, we have surpassed many of our goals that was set over the past year.

The Strategic Planning Committee has met all of the strategic direction and is looking forward to continuing with the Quality Improvement Plan through Accreditation.

The Health and Wellness Committee established a hospital protocol and reviewed the requirements for the Quality Assurance Measures.

Technology has become an essential part of any organization and through the Technology Committee we have installed computers in all programs, all staff have Email, CIMS, has become an everyday routine and we are hooked into social media through our website and Facebook.

The policy and Membership Committee will be busy next year revising our By-Laws in order to be compliant with the new Not-For-Profit Corporations Act.

One of our most successful committees that was formed a short time ago, and has already met their first goal, is the Transportation Committee.  They managed to work through all the logistics from start to finish on the most suitable mode of transportation for the individuals we support.  We are proud to say that due to hard work of this committee and to the many donors that gave generously, we now have a 12 passenger van.

Last but certainly not least is the Finance Committee.  This committee works tirelessly ensuring that we are in a good financial position and as you have heard from our auditors, they met their goal.    The Finance Committee is responsible for approval of purchases; which trust me, is not just a rubber stamp.  They take their job very seriously and truly keep us on our toes.

As you can see, each and every Board Member contributes a great deal to our agency and I am truly grateful for their compassion to the individuals we support and their true dedication to our agency.

They are a progressive group who just want us to continue the great work that we do and to always follow our Mission Statement.

I am so pleased and honoured that all Board Members will be returning for another year.

Thank you to all!

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Staff and Volunteers Recognized at Annual General Meeting

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Community Living Kirkland Lake Executive Director, Heather Topliss addresses the Board of Directors at Community Living Kirkland Lake’s Annual General Meeting. The event also marked Topliss’ 25th anniversary as Executive Director of the agency.

Community Living Kirkland Lake held its 66th Annual General Meeting on June 20, 2013.  The event was a wine and cheese where the board of directors for the upcoming term was introduced, staff were recognized for years of service milestones and volunteers were given a token of appreciation for the many hours spent volunteering for the agency.


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Community Living Kirkland Lake’s Board of Directors receive a gift of appreciation for volunteering their time to sit on the agency’s board. From left, Marlene Bukovec, Ron Arbuckle, Susan Enouy, Danielle Genier, Tony Antonaizzi, Annice Tilley,
Laura Turner and Brian Culhane. Absent, Michelle Fillion and Sid Hamden.

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Volunteers at Community Living Kirkland Lake accept a gift of appreciation for their efforts over the past year. in total, 39 staff and community volunteers spent between 10 and over 100 hours volunteering for the individuals supported by the agency.

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Kirkland Lake EMS Holds Car Wash for New Van


Members of Kirkland Lake EMS present a cheque for $745 to Community Living Kirkland Lake.

Recently, Kirkland Lake EMS held a car wash at Pettenuzzo’s, Your Independent Grocer in support of Community Living Kirkland Lake’s van fundraising efforts.  Thanks to their hard work and the generous contributions from those who took advantage of the car wash,  $745 was raised.  Community Living Kirkland Lake wishes to thank Kirkland Lake EMS for their support.

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Kirkland Lake OPP Steps up for Special Olympics

Opening Jump resizeOnce again, members of the Kirkland Lake OPP have lent a helping hand to Community Living Kirkland Lake and Special Olympics.

On Friday May 24, the Annual Kirkland Lake Special Olympics Basketball game vs. the O.P.P took place at St. Jerome School.  As always, this event continued to be a success.  Both teams worked hard, had lots of fun and displayed admirable sportsmanship.  The Special Olympics team had contributions from everyone and was able to squeak out a victory in a five person shoot out at the end.  With the pressure on, Nathan Hutchison was able to knock down a clutch foul shot to put the Special Olympics team ahead and help them secure the win.  In addition to the game, a number of non-perishable food items were donated to the Kirkland Lake Food Bank.

torch runThe following Friday, The OPP took to the Streets of Kirkland Lake for the Annual Torch Run in support of Special Olympics.  They were joined by Community Living staff and supported individuals.  As they made their way through town, it was very encouraging to see the support from the community through cheers of support and on the spot donations.  The run started at Northern College and made its way to Pettenuzzo’s Your Independent Grocer where a fundraising barbecue was held with great support from the community.

We would like to take this opportunity to thank all those that took the time to help make these events possible. Thanks to the KL O.P.P for being a huge supporter of Community Living Kirkland Lake and participating in the game and the torch run.   As well, thanks to J.R. Daoust for volunteering his time to take pictures at the game.  To see more of these pictures please click here.  Dennis Perrault did an excellent job refereeing the game and adding entertainment. Thanks also to all the fans who came out to support the event and gave generously to the Kirkland Lake Food Bank.  Thanks to St. Jerome School for providing their gym for us to use. To Pettenuzzo’s for offering their location and securing donations for the fundraising barbecue and thanks also to all the staff and volunteers at Community Living who volunteered their time to participate and organize the game.   Last but not least, thank you to all the players on the Special Olympics basketball team.  Everyone gave their best effort, displayed excellent sportsmanship and played as a team.

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Potluck Cooking Gives Individuals the Opportunity to Improve Their Skills

Since 2010, an evening Potluck Cooking class takes place three nights a week at Community Living Skills.  The class is mainly for individuals supported in Community Living Kirkland Lake’s Supported Independent Living Program and it gives them an opportunity to improve their basic cooking skills, lets them try new foods and provides them with a way to sit down and enjoy a meal with a group.


CLS Instructor, Sherry Fraser assists Rick Bassett with this week’s meal, tortelinni primavera.

Sherry Fraser teaches the Monday class and her group has relatively unchanged since it started.   She says that their skills have improved greatly and they take initiative to complete their tasks and are very motivated and efficient. “These classes are about more than just learning to cook.  We plan our menus, make shopping lists, cover safe food handling and cleaning responsibilities.”  Social interaction and manners are also strong components of the class.


Sherry Shelp, Floyd Hack and Bobby Drury work together in the CLS Potluck Cooking class.

Bobby Drury says he looks forward to cooking every Monday because he likes the way Sherry teaches them and they all have known each other for a long time and this gives them a chance to get together once a week.  He also says it helps when we have to cook for ourselves at home.

While the food is cooking, the group sits down and plans their meal for the next week.  The participants bring their own meal suggestions and recipes and then discuss what would go well with the main dish they select.  They then use cook books and the internet to research new recipes.


The group plans the menu for next week.

Once the menu for next week’s class is decided, a shopping list is made.  Items are divided up and each person gets their own personal list of groceries to bring to next week’s class.

“We always plan to make enough food so each person gets to take leftovers home to eat the next day,” says Fraser.  “We also like to try new things.  Some of the meals we prepare here are a little more difficult to make so the skills they learn will benefit them when cooking at home.”

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Van Fundraising Gets a Boost From Local Business

Community Living Kirkland Lake would like to thank the following local businesses and organizations for their generous donations toward our van fundraising efforts.  Your contributions will enhance the services we provide to the individuals we support!

  • Depres-Pacey Insurance
  • Goldbelt Tire & Supply
  • Goldland Billiards & Variety
  • Heath & Sherwood (1964) Limited
  • Kemp, Elliot & Blair LLP
  • Kirkland Lake Gold
  • Kirkland Lake Hard Rock n’ Rollers
  • Kirkland Lake Home Based Business Expo
  • KL Volunteer Fire Brigade
  • Kohut Electric Limited
  • MGI Collision & Auto Repair Centre
  • Northern Lights Computing
  • Patrick O’Connor
  • Pinewood Park Motors
  • Julie Richard-Gorman
  • Rick’s Magic Touch Catering
  • The Rotary Club of Kirkland Lake
  • St. Andrew Goldfields Ltd

Thank You So Much!


Jamie Cowie, left, presents a cheque for $1120 to Lauri Lambert, Director of Community Development for Community Living Kirkland Lake. The cheque is for money raised at the 2nd Annual Home Based Business Expo held at Hockey Heritage North in April.

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