Piecing it Together

In this millennium year, OASIS chose the theme “Piecing it Together” for the 4th Annual Conference and Annual General Meeting. This theme, enhanced by a specially designed quilt, reflected the unity, cooperation and strength that is the cornerstone of OASIS.

Our true strength was reflected in our growing membership, our great conference turnout and our ability to attract the best in speakers and workshop presentation to this annual event. This year was no exception. The roster reflects the most current thinking in organizational development and addresses the most pressing challenges facing the developmental services sector today.

  • An understanding of HLDAA, the Hospital Labour Disputes Arbitration Act and its implications
  • Risk management and its potential impact on governance
  • How effective communications and strategic marketing can transform our services.
  • Identifying the latest trends affecting human resources, such as Disability Management and changes to the Ontario Employment Standards Act
  • Enhancing Leadership for Exceptional Results – Diane Vejina combined Sienfeld, Lily Tomlin and a dash of Lucille Ball, in an energetic, interactive and humourous manner that exemplified her uncommon approach to living, learning and building a personal roadmap for ongoing leadership and development
  • Carl Hiebert’s inspirational presentation “Gift of Wings”
  • Dialogue with the Ministry of Community & Social Services where Myra Wiener, Director of the Developmental Services Board and Valerie Beckett, Regional Director, addressed policy and operational challenges facilitated by OASIS’ very own “Jay Leno” Keith Hudson from the Board of Directors.

Of course, after just a brief glance at the program and the many concurrent workshops and presentations, the qualtiy of choices was overwhelming.

It was very gratifying that the Minister, Mr. John Baird, again joined in part of the conference activities this year, and to share in the success and the struggles of the member agencies. The Minister’s presence reflects the important role OASIS and its members play in the development of services for people with disabilities.

For many, coming to the Annual Conference meant staying at the lovely Waterloo Inn and enjoying its amenities. There were several opportunities for networking both at the golf course and in the hospitality/reception room. The Octoberfest provided plenty of chances to mix and mingle while sampling traditional goodies, drinking beer from the freshly tapped keg with new friends and joining in song. Visiting the Waterloo area means dropping in on the St. Jacob’s Market (at 6:00 a.m.) and enjoying this unique atmosphere. No conference would be complete without the Annual Trade Show and Silent Auction.

Suppliers and services were on hand to answer questions and showcase their wares. This was a wonderful opportunity to discover some ways to make worklife a little easier and to learn new and different ways of doing this.

The Annual General Meeting took place on Friday where we thanked the Board members who had completed a term for their time and efforts, their contributions and commitment. Keith Hudson, Judy Vellinga, Evy Breslin, Marlene Walker and Alan McWhorter are this year’s parting Board Members and are to be commended for their commitment and dedication to OASIS. The strength and unity of the Board is reflected in the excellent leadership of the President, Sue Dolan, who has agreed to lead OASIS through another challenging and eventful year.

Cooperation is essential to the success of OASIS and nowhere was it more clearly demonstrated than in the tireless efforts of the staff and volunteers who produced this illustrious event. They developed an exciting program with a diverse mix of sessions and speakers on a broad range of topics. Due to their work and dedication, the promise of another memerable conference was achieved.

192 Member Agencies and Growing