Monthly Newsletter
February 2020
Caring Deeply
"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
― Maya Angelou

During the month of February as a society we are encouraged to think of:
  • Love – Valentine’s Day
  • Black History Month
  • Family Day
  • Coronavirus
  • Let’s Talk Depression

(I’m probably missing some, too!)

Our newsletter this month focuses on the importance of all of these issues. I hope you find something that will be helpful for your work with the vulnerable sector, as you care deeply for others.

Maya Angelou experienced tremendous hardships in her life from being primarily cared for by her grandmother, being abandoned, sexually abused, having her voice taken from her, being exploited and becoming a teenaged mom. Maya Angelou did not remain as a victim, rather she found her voice as an activist in the Civil Rights Movement, a woman of great faith and an advocate for those who are vulnerable: children and the marginalized. 

“If you find it in your heart to care for somebody else, you will have succeeded.”
― Maya Angelou

As concerns escalate regarding the spread of coronavirus, I am providing you our recommendations on health and safety and how to communicate these tips to the vulnerable sector.

To celebrate Black History Month, we will be offering a webinar on Racial Diversity and Inclusion. Learn how to make your organization a safe place for everyone regardless of ethnicity, race, or national origin. Discrimination robs people of their dignity and their ability to fulfill their capabilities. It is important to note that any person or group can discriminate, and any person or group can be the target of discrimination.  Learn how you can combat discrimination and promote racial diversity and inclusion.

“If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.”
– Maya Angelou


This month, Tori Bissell shares her musings in our blog on how cyberbullying can impact an individual emotionally. 

During the month of February, please know we are working on your behalf to provide you up-to-date solutions on health and safety issues that relate to you, your team, and your constituents.

We are also sharing the love with you by providing savings on our memberships.

Happy Valentine's Day!
Melodie Bissell, CEO at Plan to Protect ®
The Latest from Our Blog
Cyberbullying: What's wrong with our world?

What if we taught kids to look at cyberbullying like this? What if we helped them see that the words, photos, actions and things they do online hurt just as much (if not more), than if they did it physically? What if we helped adults to see that their words and online actions are teaching our kids how to behave online? What if we could actually see the impact our online communication has? What if we thought before we posted, retweeted, liked or shared?

According to i-Safe Foundation, "over half of adolescents and teens have been bullied online, and about the same number have engaged in cyberbullying. More than 1 in 3 young people have experienced cyber threats online. Over 25 percent of adolescents and teens have been bullied repeatedly through their cell phones or the Internet." But what breaks my heart the most... "Well over half of young people do not tell their parents when cyberbullying occurs."

I have experienced the terror of horrible, hate-filled cyberbullying. As people spewed putrid word vomit from behind their keyboards, I cried alone in my bedroom. I read those words over and over again, stunned that anyone could say such horrible lies. As they picked apart my work, my art, my body, my friendships and my faith, I internally picked my self apart until the scabs bleed and the wounds ached deeply. Their words cut deeper than any knife could. I wanted to scream, to cry, to run, to hide. I wanted to destroy all of my social media and technology... I wanted to delete everything I had ever posted or created. I wanted to quit.
New This Month
You Asked...

Q: How do I determine reasonable grounds for reporting suspected abuse to the Department of Social Services?

(Question 7a of our Frequently Asked Questions).

February Special
No better reason to become a member! Align yourself with Plan to Protect®, as consultants and trainers we will provide you up to date resources and tools to help you achieve the HIGHEST STANDARD of protection. Being a member is one way you demonstrate to your community you care for the vulnerable sector. This month we demonstrate we care for you by providing you $50 off a Basic Membership, or $100 off an Implementation or Going the Distance Membership.
Some Conditions apply: Membership application must be received and paid during the month of February 2020. No other discounts apply.
Training Highlights
Racial Diversity and Inclusion
Special Interest Webinar

Learn how to make your organization a safe place for everyone regardless of ethnicity, race, or national origin. This webinar is designed for staff, volunteers, leadership, and administration. We will explain how to achieve the highest standard of racism prevention in your organization.

$30+tax per person
Plan to Protect ® by Reporting and Responding to Abuse
Complimentary Webinar

Learn more about why we report and respond to abuse. This webinar is designed for leaders and administrators who work with vulnerable sectors. We will discuss what to do when you suspect abuse, how to report or respond, and how to maintain confidentiality. Let’s raise the bar on protection!

Choosing to Love
Plan to Protect ® against coronaviruses

Read our blog on this topic by clicking here

Tips for preparing for a possible pandemic:

Educate and communicate:  Inform your team members and constituents of the symptoms via bulletin inserts, posters and public announcements.

Common signs of infection include respiratory symptoms, fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties. In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure and even death. 

 In cases of potential pandemics and crises, identify who the organization spokesperson will be. Everyone wants to be a voice, but the message can become very convoluted and conflicting. Identifying one common message and the spokesperson for the organization can help alleviate fear-mongering, wrongful dismissals, financial hardship, and discrimination.

Supervision: When signing-in children observe if they have flu type symptoms. Unless directed by public health agencies full screening is not normally recommended.

Children should be encouraged to use their own pens, pencils, tissues, etc. to reduce the need to share supplies.

Practice hand hygiene:  Hand hygiene is the single most important measure for preventing the spread of infections. Everyone should be encouraged to practice hand washing frequently washing their hands with soap and warm running water for at least 15 seconds or if hand washing facilities are not available, using a 60 – 90% ABHR under adult supervision.
  • Before eating lunch or snacks
  • Before and after food preparation
  • After using the toilet
  • After sneezing or coughing
  • After wiping a child’s nose (or a child wiping his/her own nose)
  • Before and after using shared computers, sports equipment, etc.

Practice respiratory etiquette: Respiratory etiquette can also play an important role in reducing the spread of influenza.

Everyone should be encouraged to:
  • Cough and sneeze into their sleeve (not their hands) or to cover their mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing
  • Immediately dispose of used tissues in a garbage can
  • Perform hand hygiene after disposing of tissues

Avoid touching eyes, mouth and nose: Influenza spreads when the respiratory secretions from the mouth or nose of an infected person come in contact with the mouth, nose or eyes (i.e., mucous membranes) of another person. To reduce the spread of the virus, students and staff should be encouraged to avoid touching their eyes, mouth, and nose.

Stay home when ill: Everyone (including staff) who become ill should be encouraged to stay home until they no longer have a fever and are well. Parents should be encouraged to develop contingency plans for childcare should their child become ill.

Environmental cleaning: The virus can survive for up to 48 hours on different surfaces. Frequent cleaning of surfaces/items commonly touched can help reduce spread of the virus. The virus is easily killed by regular cleaning with commercially available cleaning products and does not require special cleaning agents or disinfectants.

Information source:  Prior to closing your programs and services, we would recommend you follow the lead of your Public Health Agencies.
Welcoming Our New Staff
This month, we are welcoming two new staff members to our team. Cedric Wai (left), started at Plan to Protect in December as our On-line Training Support and Registrar. Mike Brain joined the team in January as a Trainer. Welcome to the team!!
Cedric joined the Plan to Protect ® team in December 2019. With many years in various church and community initiatives, Cedric is passionate about serving people. He has worked as an Intake Worker and Administrator at a Salvation Army Family Services Unit in Toronto and served as Frontline at a Salvation Army Men's Shelter in the downtown core. Cedric is married to Nikki and enjoys spending time with his young daughter.
Michael joined Plan to Protect ® in January 2020 as a Trainer. He is a graduate of Tyndale University College and McMaster Divinity College. Michael is currently a doctoral student at Wycliffe College (University of Toronto). Before joining Plan to Protect ® , Michael served as a full-time youth pastor at a local church. He has a passion for teaching and equipping people to make their communities safer places for all.
Staff members currently on leave
Karli McCrossan on parental leave
Taylor Scott-Reimer on pregnancy leave
Hayley Chan on extended sick leave