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Contact Brant celebrates grand re-opening in downtown Brantford

Local NewsContact Brant celebrates grand re-opening in downtown Brantford

Nearly 40 people celebrated the grand re-opening of Contact Brant’s new downtown location on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

Established in 1999, Contact Brant has been serving the Brantford-Brant community as a single point of access for child and youth behavioural, developmental and emotional concerns for over two decades.

Laurie, Chloe and Carlos Santos partake in a ribbon cutting ceremony during the grand re-opening of Contact Brant on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

Jane Angus, Chief Executive Officer for Contact Brant, said that herself and her team work to connect families to various community, education and health services in the area.

“Here at Contact Brant, we’re called an access mechanism, so we’re the first place for people to call for general information as we are the community information hub in the area for many services,” she said. “We help people find services and we do the intake for some of those services so that families don’t have to go from agency to agency to do intakes, but our primary job is what we call service coordination. Really, it is, in the moment and continuous problem solving with families and caregivers that have kids with multiple complex needs or are neurodiverse.”

Contact Brant employees and board members, and local dignitaries pose for a photo during the grand reopening and ribbon cutting ceremony for Contact Brant on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

Throughout the years, the organization has also become the lead coordination agency for Coordinated Service Planning, Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Service Coordination, and the Ontario Autism Program’s Hamilton-Niagara Region Urgent Response Service.

For the past 12 years, Contact Brant had been co-located with Woodview Mental Health and Autism Services on Park Road and in February of 2024, the team made its return to Brantford’s downtown as it moved into its current location at 255 Colborne St.

While much of Contact Brant’s work can be done virtually, the move makes the organization more visible and accessible for those who may need services.

“It’s great to see that you’re here in the new premises and part of the process of what we at city hall call ‘continuous improvement.’ A different setup is part of the parcel of that process, and it’s great that you’re doing it down here and repurposing a building downtown,” said Kevin Davis, Mayor for the City of Brantford. “I want to talk about how much this organization means to parents, especially those who have a child or children that have special needs. The last thing that they [parents and caregivers] need to do is try and figure out where it is that they can go to receive assistance and it’s wonderful to have an organization like this, one that can provide a service that assists them in accessing the services they need and making that an easy transition for them.”

Kelly Skrzypek, Board Chair for Contact Brant, speaks about the organization’s various services during the grand reopening of Contact Brant on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

Scott Gregory, Program Supervisor for the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS), said that while it was wonderful for Contact Brant to be in a new location, it’s not just the building that should be celebrated, but the people inside of it.

“When I think about Contact Brant I don’t think about the building, I think about the people and I think about the values that you all embody: community, collaboration, and leadership,” he said. “You all show the extra mile you go to serve your children and youth in your community. The passion you have for the work that you do, that’s the most important thing. …I can’t say it enough, but thank you to everybody for the work that you do.”

Scott Gregory, Program Supervisor for the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS), speaks about values during the grand reopening and ribbon cutting ceremony for Contact Brant on Wednesday, May 15, 2024.

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