ACDS  News and Notes

ACDS Innovation Award 

Congratulations to this year's winner of the 2018 ACDS Innovation Award, St. Paul Abilities Network (SPAN), with its new social enterprise: the St. Paul Hampton Inn.
A Social Enterprise is a market-driven approach to address a basic unmet need or solve a social problem.  While Social Enterprises are not new to our sector, St. Paul Abilities Network (SPAN) has shown great leadership and entrepreneurial talents by establishing its seventh, and largest, social enterprise with the St. Paul Hampton Inn.
This innovative venture will address a community need; create employment for people with disabilities and First Nation's people; while also generating income for the agency.  

ACDS Membership Renewal Information - Reminder
Thank you to all who have already renewed your ACDS Membership for 2018/19. We know that the renewal process this year has been rather daunting as we try to move to a new web based database system.  We are grateful for your patience.
If you haven't yet renewed your membership, the FAQ that was sent out on April 13 will help clarify some questions Members might have on the renewal process. 

Since the renewal form this year is very long, you may want to preview the questions and gather the information you need before accessing the online form in Survey Monkey.  If you have any questions, please contact Alison Long.

Bill 30 - An Act to Protect the Health and Well-Being of Working Albertans

Bill 30 Sessions:  Save the Dates 
A memo to members will be coming out shortly regarding sessions on Bill 30, please hold the date for the session in your region:  

Grande Prairie
June 5, 2018
9:30 am
June 6, 2018
Morning session: time TBA

Red Deer
June 5, 2018
Morning session: time TBA
June 6, 2018 
9:00 am 
June 14 2018
10:00 am

ACDS Edmonton Office  
We are pleased to announce that we now have an Edmonton office.  ACDS has sub-leased a small office space from EmployAbilities.  The Edmonton office address is:   400 - 10909 Jasper Avenue, Edmonton, AB T5J 3L9

Training and Development Update

From Community Presence to Community Inclusion
Empowering the Frontline for Quality of Life Service Delivery 
E-Learning available:  approximately 3 hours - Current subsidies available!
View our website for subsidized pricing

Standards and Accreditation Update

Congratulations CET Level 2 Accredited Organizations
ACDS would like to congratulate and acknowledge to the following organizations for achieving CET Level 2 Accreditation during the past few months. Note: ACDS was known as the Alberta Association of Rehabilitation Centres [AARC] until 2006, and has been the accrediting body for service providers that are listed below as first being accredited in the 1990s.
Community Living Alternative Services (CLAS)
ACDS has been pleased to provide CLAS accreditation services since 1999; this is the second time the service provider has achieved Accreditation Level 2 and it has met the accreditation requirements for the Complex Support Needs Designation. This service provider received five commendations from its survey team. CLAS is commended for:
  • the variety of teaching and training modules offered to individuals through the Self Advocacy Group. These opportunities are planned based on suggestions by individuals and are well attended.
  • empowering individuals to assist staff to teach the programs at the Day Alternatives Program (DAP). Individuals state that they feel privileged to share their information in the classroom.
  • the high quality and consistent content of individuals' files. CLAS uses a comprehensive Individual File Structure Checklist that includes several detailed points under six sections: Legal, Contact Notes, Services, Reports, BSP and Risk Management, and Agreements and Safety Plans.
  • the amount of training offered to staff in topics such as borderline personality disorders, smart recovery, self-harm awareness, sensory processing, and neuro-sequential modelling. The scope of training, along with the venue of training, ensures that staff are well equipped to support complex needs.
  • its workplace learning for employees, which considers employees' career plans and includes leadership development opportunities.
Drumheller & Region Transition Society (DARTS)
DARTS has been a long-time member of ACDS (formerly AARC), meeting the requirements of AARC's Core Standards in 1998. The service provider first applied to go through a CET Accreditation Level 2 survey in 2017 and subsequently met Level 2, plus the requirements for the Complex Supports Needs Review, Respite for Children and Adults with Disabilities, and Services for Children with Disabilities. DARTS's commitment to individual development is holistic in nature (e.g., mental, spiritual, physical, emotional) and services are based on a proactive approach that identifies future individual, family, and community needs.
DARTS is commended for
  • having a mandate that allows individuals to "age in place" and doing renovations in the homes rather than having individuals relocate
  • providing a high-quality, flexible respite service that allows individuals to continue with their regularly-scheduled activities while in respite
  • encouraging individuals to undertake a leadership role by reporting their activities and sharing their concerns through the Advocacy Group to the Board of Directors
ACDS was pleased to present DARTS its CET Accreditation Level 2 certificate at its February 2018 Staff Appreciation Dinner.
Entrust Adult Inc. p/o Entrust Disability Services
Following its January 2018 survey, ACDS awarded Entrust Disability Services Accreditation Level 2, the Complex Support Needs Designation, and Services for Children with Disabilities. In addition to having developmental disabilities, 86% of individuals accessing service are considered to have complex behavioural support needs with a few others having medically complex needs. Because of the high number of individuals on the autism spectrum, this service provider feels that its particular niche is to offer services to individuals with autism.
Just a few Entrust's notable accomplishments include
  • its staff functions and community outreach (e.g., barbecues, indie rock show, ice cream socials)
  • its involvement in developing software and advancing data collection and management
  • its advocacy roles (e.g., offering workshops on the Autism Spectrum Disorder and on challenging behaviours)
  • its Vacation Planning Tool for individuals accessing service
Rehabilitation and Employment for Developing Independence (REDI) Enterprises Society
REDI Enterprises Society first met the CET Standards in 2001 and added the Striving for Quality (SFQ) higher level standards in 2004 and 2007. It has been a Level 2 organization since 2012. This year, REDI also achieved the Complex Support Needs Designation.
REDI made the final list of nominees for the 2016 Chamber of Commerce Business Awards and it has appeared twice in the Customer Service Excellence and the Community Involvement Awards.
It is noteworthy that from January 1, 2017 until March 15, 2018, 86% of its individuals accessing service were employed or volunteering.
Commendations from REDI's final report include
  • having numerous opportunities for individuals to participate in self-advocacy networks.
  • going the extra mile when coordinating schedules of activities and increasing opportunities for individuals to do things they enjoy and to expand their circle of friends.
  • going over and above by involving interdisciplinary teams and by arranging services and supports for individuals with mental health needs, and for having Wellness Plans for staff that are incorporated into the individuals' behaviour support plans.
  • having a comprehensive, fair, and unbiased process for accepting individuals into service and for involving everyone who is part of the individuals' networks, including many professionals, in this process.
  • having elaborate and well-defined processes and systems that incorporate community services, including multidisciplinary teams, that help support individuals with complex behavioural challenges as they interact in their communities.
  • the way in which it supports employees following incidents that involve them and for the manner in which this is done both professionally and confidentially.
  • having Wellness Plans for staff that help reduce stress at work and for accessing resources such as Healthy Workplaces Framework and Wellness Program Ideas to help staff with ideas when preparing their Wellness Plans.
  • incorporating mandatory training as a goal in its strategic plan.
Rehoboth Christian Ministries
Rehoboth Christian Ministries has been accredited through the ACDS standards since 1996. Last year, the organization's five regions - Edmonton, Calgary, Central, Northwest and South - applied for and met Accreditation Level 2 for the first time for both its Residential Services and its Vocational Services.
It's South, Calgary and Northwest regions also applied for and were awarded Respite for Children and Adults with Disabilities, and the South region applied for and was awarded Services for Children with Disabilities and the Complex Support Needs Designation.
The final report for Rehoboth's 2017 survey highlighted nine commendations for things like
  • its use of a database to integrate processes and ensure continuous improvements
  • its initiative for ensuring consistent service and business practices across all regions
  • the resources it obtains when assisting individuals to transition from their homes or from other service providers
  • its establishment of planning facilitators who have toolkits for doing person-centred planning
  ACDS was pleased to present CET Accreditation Level 2 certificates to Rehoboth's five regions at its March 2018 event.
Correction Notice: Areas to Explore

Accreditation would like to advise purchasers of the  CET Accreditation Level 1 and Level 2 manuals that there is an error in the titles for  Standards 32 and 33 in the  Areas to Explore  sections.  These titles have incorrectly used the word "unanticipated" instead of "anticipated."

Therefore, the title for Standard 32 should read, "The service provider uses planned positive procedures in response to anticipated situations or behaviours of concern."

The title for Standard 33 should read, "The service provider uses planned restrictive procedures in response to anticipated situations or behaviours  of concern."

Complex Support Needs Training:  What happens if training is not complete prior to my onsite review?

The Complex Supports Needs Designation (CSND) review is gaining traction and 17 organizations have achieved this designation since September 2017.  If you have been considering pursuing CSND but are reluctant because of outstanding training, ACDS will be offering the following support.
  • As a service provider, you will identify what CSND training is needed based on
    • the specific supports the individuals you serve require
    • your current policy and procedure that speaks to how current situations will be mitigated
  • During your CET/CSND site survey, if staff who serve individuals with complex needs are waitlisted for mandatory training, then
    • the related indicator(s) will be rated Not Present
    • but the overall status of the designation will be Pending
  • Your ACDS Coordinator will follow up with you according to a schedule (e.g., based on when staff are scheduled to get training)
  • Once we have received confirmation that training has been completed
    • this indicator will be changed from Not Present to Present
    • the designation will be changed from Pending to Achieved
    • you will receive the CSND certificate
This will only affect your CSND status; it will not affect your CET Accreditation Level 1 or Level 2 status.

To locate needed workshops and courses, please  contact Training and Development at
Links and Events

Are you a director or manager wanting to make a greater impact in your nonprofit organization, and across the sector?
Do you want to learn how to better manage conflict and change?
Are you looking to develop your leadership skills and inspire your staff?
If you answered yes to any of the above, apply now for Executive Directions XD Ascent : a leadership development program for mid-senior level nonprofit professionals wanting to grow their confidence and competence as leaders in the sector.
XD Ascent Cohort 2 begins in Fall 2018. Application deadline: June 1, 2018.
Learn more and register at: or contact Leslie at

Alberta Council of Disability Services
160-3015 12 ST NE
Calgary, Alberta, T2E 7J2
Phone: 403-250-9495 * Fax: 403-291-9864   *