Dear Participants and Circles of Support,
As we begin another new year, I reflect on all we have accomplished and the opportunities that continue to lie ahead. Two years and the impacts of COVID have revealed not only the resilience of The Arc San Francisco and our community but, more importantly, the dedication, heart, and creativity that have blossomed during these unprecedented times.
We welcomed a small group of participants back to our campuses in Marin and San Francisco this past fall, resuming the essential on-campus srvices. It has been wonderful to see our participants back in our buildings as we continue to redefine what supports look like. Hybrid classes, with large screens in classrooms, now allow on-campus and remote students to learn together.
Our Workforce Development Team has worked with old and new employer partners alike to strategize how to rebuild teams and answer this labor crunch while also keeping equity and inclusion in mind. Our Wellness and Residential teams have worked tirelessly to connect our participants to vaccinations and telehealth.
Arc participants and teams have advocated for more social justice focus across the organization. We have engaged Paradigm Shift, partners who are guiding us in conversations of the intersection of racial justice and disability justice. These fruitful conversations have been with staff, leadership, board members, and participants. This spring, we look forward to piloting our first disability justice curriculum with our participants.
It can feel like much of The Arc’s work in 2021 has been about adapting to COVID, but we have also taken this time to learn from our new service delivery models and plan for how we move forward.
I’m excited to announce that in 2021 we began a strategic planning process, engaging participants, staff, our board, and other stakeholders to help us chart the course for the next three years– to build “castles in the air.” The core tenets of the plan that are emerging are interdependence, belonging, justice and agency.
Our teams are now doing the critical work of putting the foundations under these castles. We look forward to sharing these plans with all of you in the coming months before we officially “go live” in July.
We have much work ahead of us and even more hope for the future of our organization. We look forward to working with you, our community to create a world where all people with ID/DD can thrive.