Beaufort Day Program Participants are supported in attending community based educational, social and recreational activities at North Island College, Courtenay Recreation, Evergreen Seniors, Therapeutic Riding, Comox Valley Aquatic Centre, Comox Valley Self Advocates Group, etc. Many participants are supported in volunteer and/or paid employment.
The Association offers a transportation program for individuals who are unable to access public transit. This ‘fee for service’ provides door-to-door drop off for residents of Comox, Courtenay, Cumberland, Royston and the Regional District.
Over the years, the Association has supported program participants to pursue paid employment opportunities through contracted services (i.e. Federal Superannuates Quarterly Newsletter prep and mail-out), crew work (i.e. yard care, flyer delivery), group production (Wagz Bagz, EZ towels) and individual initiatives (John’s Document Disposal, Anne’s Bookmarks).
In 2009, the Association embarked on a journey to explore ‘social enterprise’. With assistance from the Comox Valley Foundation and Enterprising Non-Profits, we completed a feasibility study and created a business plan to launch Pet Treat Bakery in 2010. This small business produces all natural, healthy snacks for cats and dogs, wholesales them through veterinary clinics and pet supply stores. Pet Treat Bakery employs eleven hourly workers at the dehydration plant and six to eight piecework employees in labelling and packaging. Volunteers assist and supervise with baking and packaging.
In April 2014, Pet Treat Bakery was invited to compete, as one of three finalists, in the Social Enterprise Heroes event in Vancouver, sponsored by e.n.p. (enterprising non-profits). We were awarded expansion grants from Telus Small Business and the VanCity Foundation with ‘expert’ advice and encouragement to grow our business.
Profits from the Pet Treat Bakery business are used to subsidize and enrich program activities. Pet Treat has also provided ‘seed money’ for other enterprises. In May, 2015, we launched ‘Litterbusters’, an environmental clean up service that contracts with municipal and regional government.