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  • Writer's picturePam Stoik

Ontario Community Support Association Conference 2023 Reflections

I'm really "at home" in the home and community support space. Not just because I worked for a large home care agency for a decade, but also

because it's a sector that is so deserving of more attention, support and funding!!!

How many of us actually dream of aging in a long-term-care facility (answer: no one). And yet home and community care remain the poor, under-funded cousin of the health care system (okay, I promise this isn't going to be a rant). Why do I love this sector?

The people are passionate. They know that home care and other support services aren't just the most fiscally responsible solution, it's also the right thing to do for society and for individuals.

Creative solutions abound. If there is one group that must creatively solution, it's the community sector peeps. They are the MacGyver of health care. Oddly enough they don't necessarily see themselves that way, however, in the days when I would go into people's homes to see what made the most successful nurses and PSWs tick, clients and family caregivers would always cite the worker's resourcefulness and creative problem-solving. To the outsider, the problems seemed small, but to clients and caregivers? Worker creativity was a life-saver.

Why did Big Eye Innovation bring Design Thinking tools to the table? Well, as consensus-builders who are focused on the greater good, sometimes things move a little slow. People hesitate to make decisions for fear of making the wrong one. The tools we provided in our Lightning Labs help boost decisiveness by showing participants which ideas will have the biggest impact, with less effort--essential when you're already probably wearing five different hats in your work.

I know some people were hoping to unlock all the answers in a 2-hour session. What we aimed to achieve through the Lightning Lab model though, was to give people the tools and insights to ask better questions, generate LOTS of ideas, then zoom in on which ones to test out first.

What a fantastic and, with 10 sessions delivered in total, whirlwind of a day!!!

Want to learn more about Design Thinking and an innovative mindset? We'd like to learn more about you too! Give us your input on what sessions you'd like to see offered. Please take two minutes to provide your two cents with a quick survey!

Special thanks to conference photographer, Brian de Rivera Simon, of Tarsipix Studios. who took some really amazing shots! You can find him on Instagram, Twitter (@tarsipix), Facebook, and LinkedIn.


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