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New CLD venture to operate concession at Town arenas

August 23, 2019   ·   0 Comments

By Mike Baker

Community Living Dufferin (CLD) is getting ready to serve local residents a little differently this fall. 

Just weeks after the regional service provider announced it had come to an agreement with Dufferin County to operate a cafeteria at the Orangeville courthouse and County offices on Zina Street, it has been confirmed that CLD has signed on to provide concessionary services at both the Alder Recreation Centre and Tony Rose Memorial Arena for the next three years. 

The ventures are part of a new social enterprise initiative launched by CLD to create jobs for some of the community’s most vulnerable residents. On top of the aforementioned locations, CLD also operates a café service at Georgian College. While the bulk of the work force is made up of people with different levels of developmental disability, serviced by CLD, positions have been made available to individuals with connections to both Family Transition Place (FTP) and Dufferin Child and Family Services (DCAFS). 

“Community Living Dufferin, along with our partners, are working to improve the opportunities for people having challenges entering, or re-entering the workforce. We believe we can achieve this goal by individualizing the work to the needs of the person,” said Robert Bingham, Executive Director of CLD. 

This new initiative will plug the sizeable gap created by the provincial government last year when, due to a change in regulations, CLD was forced to close its QPAC packaging plant after 47 years of operation. That particular facility provided employment to more than 30 individuals.

In an interview with the Citizen earlier this summer, Karen Murphy-Fritz, a spokesperson for CLD, noted this new venture had the potential to create more than 100 jobs in Orangeville. 

It has been confirmed that the concession stand at Alder Arena will be reopened next Friday (Aug. 30), just in time for an OHL exhibition game between the Mississauga Steelheads and Guelph Storm. The snack bar at Tony Rose Arena will reopen the week of Sept. 2. 

The agreement was officially ratified by Town Council on Aug. 12, with the three-year contract running until Dec. 30, 2022. Concession staff currently employed by the Town will have the opportunity to work for CLD and work in any of the four ‘B Social Café’ establishments across town, at the Alder Recreation Centre, Tony Rose Arena, Orangeville courthouse and Georgian College.

“We anticipate these four cafes/snack bars will generate approximately 12,000 hours of employment, but equally important will be the skills, income and feeling of self-worth the people we employ through these opportunities will acquire,” Mr. Bingham added.



         

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