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BFAIR Summer Newsletter
08:09AM / Friday, October 02, 2020
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Summer 2020 Newsletter
 
 
At BFAIR, in-person contact is essential to meeting the needs of the people we support. Bridging the gap to maintain contact when the pandemic forced the closure of many of our services relied heavily on the creativity and steadfastness of all direct care, administrative and management staff. There’s little doubt that the positive innovations, developed initially out of necessity, are exciting and will continue. However, working closely with people with developmental disabilities, autism and acquired brain injuries, whose quality of life depends on direct care, will remain a critical aspect of the services we offer. For both; direct care when the safety and well-being of our residents and staff was paramount and for the inspiring work to provide services remotely, Alex, Chairperson of our Board of Directors and I would like to thank all BFAIR staff. You have our pledge to do our utmost in support and recognition of your outstanding work.
 
BFAIR Online Programming
 
Our Employment Services programs began online programming quickly after the closure of supported work sites in mid-March. It was an opportunity to be creative and deliver services in an innovative and creative way that would keep folks engaged and supported while continuing to build work related skills.
 
 
Day Program Reopening
 
Our Day Habilitation and CBDS programs celebrated its long awaited reopening to participants on Monday August 3, 2020. Prior to doing so, we conducted surveys with the families to gain their input and received some great feedback to incorporate into our planning. The participants who reside in some residential homes have not returned as people were prioritized in such a way to evaluate the risk to their health vs. the benefit of in-person services.
 
 
BFAIR Bottle & Can Redemption Center
 
After being closed since March, the BFAIR Bottle & Can Redemption Center reopened for business on June 16th. Several precautions have been established and are being followed to ensure the safety of our staff, program participants, and customers alike. All redemption services are currently set up outside to manage capacity restrictions inside the building and face coverings are worn at all times by anyone working at or redeeming cans and bottles at the center. In an effort to control volume inside, a temporary limit of 300 containers per customer remains in effect.
 
Current hours of operation are Tuesday – Saturday, 9:00 am – 2:00 pm. Closed Sunday and Monday.
 
 
The Community Gives Back to BFAIR
 
Thank you to all of our donors who have been so generous, especially during this time of the pandemic.
We have received many donations to help offset the cost of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), which
the agency has spent in excess of $65,000 to protect staff, our residents and program participants.
 
Also received were several grants from organizations such as MEMA, Health New England, and the COVID Emergency Response Fund for Berkshire County, a coalition of philanthropy and business partners including the Berkshire United Way, Berkshire Taconic Foundation, Northern Berkshire United Way and the Williamstown Community Chest.
 
 
Self-Advocacy Cookie Dough Fundraiser
 
The BFAIR Self-Advocacy Group, “We Are The People”, set their sights on raising funds for their efforts by selling smiley face cookies during the month of July. Their “Raise Some Dough” fundraiser was very successful pulling in over $1100 with over 40 cookie orders.
 
 
New Brain Injury Home Opening - Southampton
 
We are excited to announce the opening of our third home for individuals with acquired brain injury (ABI) in Southampton, and our 13th home as part of the BFAIR family of residences.
 
Meeting the needs of the growing adults with ABI residing in the Pioneer Valley and achieving an agency strategic initiative, this beautiful home is much more than that; a place to welcome four people into its doors and to call it their home.
 
2020 Annual Meeting
 
During this challenging time with the COVID-19 pandemic, we made the difficult decision to cancel our 2020 Annual Meeting. As I’m sure you can understand, while we much prefer to hold our meeting publicly to recognize our staff, report our achievements and thank our community partners, our focus and attention must be on protecting the health and safety of the people we serve with disabilities, the amazing staff who care for them, and our community.
 
Our Annual Report was sent out to our supporters through the mail, electronically, and posted on our website. We hope you had a chance to review our Annual Report and watch the wonderful video from our keynote speakers, Julie and Michael Warrington, who would have kicked off our meeting. The Warringtons are part of over fifty individuals and their families supported by the Family & Individual Support Program at BFAIR.

 

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