Memories of the 2012 Annual Educational Conference

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This year’s conference introduced a number of exciting new initiatives that added to the successful outcome of our annual event. And its focus on “Best Practices” encouraged the sharing of processes and techniques that will help pave the way to a stronger industry.

For the first time ever, we offered Strategic and Financial Planning as an in-class course. We attracted 20 students from across Southern Ontario and the feedback was extremely positive. Thanks to instructor, Steve Naylor, who worked with us to make this possible and provided a positive experience for our students.

The conference started earlier than in past years, with a Wednesday morning workshop entitled Intensifi - cation/Affordable Housing. A great panel of speakers and strong attendance gave reassurance that our delegates will arrive early given the right topic.

We were honoured to have a number of dignitaries on hand at our opening lunch – Dan Temprile, General Manager, Public Health, Safety & Social Services, City of Brantford; His Worship Mayor Chris Friel, Corporation of the City of Brantford; and His Worship Mayor Ron Eddy, Corporation of the County of Brant.

Brantford’s strong native heritage was evident throughout the conference. From an Aboriginal Blessing & Smudging, to a delightful performance by the Niyohkwaritaa Children’s Dance Troup and the closing presentation by our keynote speaker, Darren Thomas, entitled Seven Generations, delegates had the opportunity to enjoy the customs and learn more about the history of our First Nation cousins.

The concurrent sessions were outstanding and included presentations on Technology in Social Housing, Residential Tenancies Act, Best Practices, Violence Assessment & Staff Safety, Partnerships & Community Develop - ment, Social Innovation, and Enterprise. A dynamic slate of topics presented by some of the industry’s best.

The trade show is always a highlight of the annual conference, and this year was no exception. There were 14 companies – both national and local - showcasing the latest products and services and spending quality time with delegates.

On the lighter side, delegates enjoyed a wonderful welcome reception and fun inter-active entertainment with the DanceHeads. The closing banquet featured entertainment by The George Rose Big Band.

It’s evident that the 2012 Conference Committee incorporated the “Best Practices” theme throughout the planning stages of this wonderful event. It was first class from start to finish. Thanks to Conference Chair, Deborah Filice, and the rest of the committee– Christine Brutin, Tracey Csordas, Ellen Gerow, Jeff Gilpin, Sherry Haines, Mary Parent, Harry Popiluk and Angie Vehrs.

Now it’s time to mark the dates for next year’s conference at the Delta Meadowvale Hotel, Mississauga, April 17-19, 2013.


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