Posted by Lyle Goodin on Sep 08, 2017
The Summer Respite Care Program is one of the Rotary Club of Bowmanville’s signature programs.  The Bowmanville Rotary Club has had a long history of support for children with special needs and their families.  Recognizing that families with special needs children deserve some respite, especially during the summer months when children are not in school, the Bowmanville Rotary Club offers a Summer Respite Care Program that provides home care for children with special needs.
The program began in 1998 with three families enrolled and has grown to include over thirty-five families with children ranging in age from 3 to 20+.  The program involves one of the Club’s student respite care givers spending quality time with the special needs child and providing social, educational and recreational activities appropriate for the child.
This past summer, not only did the Summer Respite Care Program provide respite for the families and quality care for the children, it also provided meaningful career-related summer jobs for the five college and university students we hired.
The Summer Respite Care Program ran for ten weeks from June 19, 2017 to August 25, 2017.  The Program was funded in part by a grant from the Canada Summer Jobs Program administered through Service Canada and by the Rotary Club of Bowmanville.  Families were able to request preferred hours to meet their particular needs during the summer.  The level of support available depended upon the funding available; however, the Rotary Club was able to provide between four to eight hours of respite care per week per child at a nominal cost of two dollars per hour of care.
Respite Care Giver and Program Coordinator Mackenzie with one of the amazing children enrolled in the program