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Being back at placement is great!

I am currently with Community Living Burlington. CLB has shut down its day programs due to Covid-19. In place of the day programs offered on-site, they have started a pilot project of virtual programming over zoom to increase the social interaction and maintain physical/intellectual activity, while encouraging a safe environment. I am currently working in virtual programming 4 days a week. In my time in virtual programming, I greet everyone to each 45-minute program, introduce the host, take attendance and monitor the screens for appropriate language and behaviour and help with any technical issues. I have filled in as the dedicated host for several programs such as the art class and sign language, as well as creating my own programs “Summer Mocktails and Games – with James”, and a science hour where we explore science and do weekly science experiments. Other programs offered are things like, yoga, music lessons, around the world ( learning about different places where we have all lived – rotating hosts), Zumba, and many more. Evenings I spend doing administrative duties and research. On Wednesdays, I work in the food distribution for residential homes organizing and delivering food to the 28 residential homes that are supported through CLB.

I have also just started a student placement mentorship group. This was suggested to me by my supervisor,  offering help and encouragement to students that will be starting a placement with CLB and are having difficulties with online programming, making connections in this format, and also helping with the creative process in starting their own programs in virtual programming.

In general, I was nervous about doing a placement in this format myself. I have found that the experience I am gaining is extremely valuable. It is a lot of work but is very rewarding and I have made some very great connections in the field, and am being encouraged and guided by some very amazing mentors.

James Raeburn

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