The Vancouver Parents Transition Group is an education and support group for parents of youth with disabilities who are transitioning to adulthood. The group meets once per month and features guest speakers who provide information and support to families.
Our Coordinators are:
I have been a teacher and counselor for many years and continue to do workshop work in Theatre with elementary school teachers. I have a supportive lovely husband and four children: the oldest in Ontario, practicing law and with a child of his own, a daughter who has just finished nursing and is off to save the world, a son following his passion by playing basketball (and hopefully studying) at an American college and a delightfully social, special needs son, Casey who many of you may know.
Casey and I have been through the transition process and hard work, luck and the support of some special people have helped us on that road. The transition group has been part of that process and I would like to be able to give back some of what I have received. I hope together with Yvonne, Yuko and Rachelle, to be a referral source for individuals and to plan some informative and stimulating workshops.
I am a parent of a special needs son, Charlie, who has autism. He graduated from High School in June 2009. With a great deal of guidance and information from our transition parent group, we were able to “transition” out of high school into the community, where Charlie volunteers and socializes with the help of support workers. I have a wonderful husband and two other children, as well as two lively Jack Russell terriers who keep us fit and on our toes. I am delighted to be helping out with Communications this year, after two years of sharing the coordinator position with Rachelle, the founder of our parent group.
Rachelle Czerwinski (founder):
I am a parent to a handsome, delightful young man. When Nicholas was 17 and in a life skills class, I realized I did not have the slightest idea about how his life would like after high school, what would he do, where would he go. I asked the social worker from the VCH Vancouver Paediatric Team if there was a parent support group on Transitioning from high school into young adulthood. One week later, she called to say that unfortunately, such a thing did not seem to exist, to which I responded:”Well, i guess we’ll have to start one then because I am sure other parents are in the same situation than me: clueless!”
Thus, in the fall of 2006, with the help of the social worker, Lisa McCune, VCH Community Developer and some parents like me, the Vancouver Parent Transition Group was started.
I am so excited to be a part of the transition parents group with Liz. I am an E.C.E. childcare worker and a school bus driver. I am enjoying working with special needs children and I have learned to be patient with them and respect their truthfulness and pureness. I’m married and have three children. Jo Jo is my second child who is in need of special support. I believe sharing is one of the important ways to support each other.