Posted by Lyle Goodin on Aug 25, 2019
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 has for 22 years offered a Summer Respite Care Program that provides both home care and experiences for children with special needs.
The program began in 1998 with three families enrolled and has grown to include over thirty-one families with thirty-five children ranging in age from 3 to 25+.  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.
Not only does the Summer Respite Care Program provide respite for the families and quality care for the children, it also provides meaningful career-related summer jobs for the five college and university students we hire.
This year the Summer Respite Care Program ran for ten weeks from June 17, 2019 to August 23, 2019.  The very successful 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.  A family could 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 tried 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.
This year's amazing Respite Care Givers and the Rotary support team are pictured below.
(L to R) Community Service Director Lyle Goodin, Program Supervisor Bonnie Seto, Program Coordinator Charlotte Timperley, Respite Care Givers Laura Gazley, Megan Lugtenburg, Emily Lehman, Abigail Heslop, and ADG John Burns