• July 07, 2021 10:47 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The summer is finally upon us, and we're slowly ramping our programs up for more in-person activities. 

    As you know, the provincial government has relaxed most restrictions with the City of Calgary rescinding the Municipal Temporary Face Coverings Bylaw. For many, that leaves more questions than answers. AAFS' approach will balance the bylaw removal with the safety of the population we serve.

    AAFS Masking Guidelines: 

    Clubhouse (north or south)

    • all staff and members will be required to wear a mask unless otherwise discussed or prearranged with a program coordinator (regardless if the 2-meter distance can be accomplished or not)

    Vehicles/Transportation

    • all staff and members will be required to wear a mask

    Outdoors & Active Life Programs

    • Wearing a mask during physical activity inhibits proper breathing and is not required nor recommended. 

    • All outdoor or active life activities where 2-meters of distance can be observed will not require a mask.

    We will continue...

    • to promote that getting vaccination is the best protection against COVID-19.

    • to ask that a Daily Health Screener be completed no more than 24 hours in advance. Your participant may be asked to leave if one is not completed.

    • to clean high touch surfaces, toys, games, etc. and will remain an essential part of combating spread within AAFS. 

    • to engage our members in cleaning up their play area after use. This approach brings awareness and keeps cleanliness in front of the mind for everyone, including our members.

    AAFS will continue to monitor mask requirements regularly and will communicate any subsequent changes in our monthly newsletter.

    Our members come from a diverse and extensive background of health and sensory challenges as it relates to COVID 19. We ask for your continued support so we can remain accessible to all age groups. It is important to note that children under 12 who can't be vaccinated yet are more than welcome to join programming in a safe and clean environment. 

    Let's take care of one another as Alberta reopens to make this a summer to remember! 

    Yours in safety,

    AAFS Leadership Team

  • June 25, 2020 10:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    We hope you are doing well as we head into summer, this summer will definitely be different than any other. We understand everyone is anxious to know the plans for AAFS in the near and distant future so we are hosting an AAFS Town Hall on June 30.

    The summer is here and we will give an update on everything AAFS, followed by a Q&A with select members of AAFS Leadership Team and Board of Directors.

    This won't just be another Zoom call, as we will preview our new Virtual Clubhouse, still in the early stages but well worth checking out. Event registration here- AAFS Town Hall.


  • May 27, 2020 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    By now, you’ve likely seen or heard about Alberta’s re-launch plans and wonder where AAFS fits in? Unfortunately, there isn’t an easy answer. While Alberta’s relaunch plans include businesses and recreational programs, current guidelines and plans don’t yet specifically address the unique needs of the disability community. And without such guidance, we will need to wait longer before we can start to confidently restart AAFS programs.

    Restarting AAFS’ programs and services for our members isn’t like opening daycares, summer camps and other seemingly similar programs. The disability sector and our community will require different guidelines to ensure we have the right protocols and guidelines in place for AAFS to run in-person programs. With continued physical distancing rules still in place for the summer, there will be limits on group sizes and many venues which we typically visit in the summer may remain closed.

    We continue to pay close attention to announcements, guidelines and information from all levels of government, Alberta Health Services and the City of Calgary. We are also working closely with all of our community partners in the recreation and disability community to ensure we have the most updated information.

    We know our members and their families want to see each other and our staff again and we do too. We miss everyone and we’re committed to resuming our in-person programs in a thoughtful and planful way, with the health, safety and well-being of our families, staff, volunteers and community partners at the forefront of all of our decisions.

    Thank you for your patience as we continue to navigate the complexity of our environment. Throughout this time, we’ll continue to simply be AAFS and offer virtual programs that reflect our values of friendship and connection. We hope you continue to participate - we love seeing your faces.

    We would love your ideas and input as we continue to plan the reopening of AAFS’ in-person programs. Please feel free to contact me directly.

    Yours,

    Dean Svoboda

    Memo - Alberta Relaunch Strategy and AAFS - 2020-05-27.pdf

  • March 15, 2020 7:30 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Dear AAFS community and families –

    Today, the Government of Alberta announced that all classes, childcare and out of school programs have been cancelled indefinitely as a result of Covid-19. In line with this direction, we have made the decision to close all AAFS programming until further notice.

    For families in need of emergency private respite due to program cancellations, please contact Anaik Maeseele at anaik@aafscalgary.com. Please note: Private respite is an arrangement between your family and you, the worker and is not part of AAFS services or programming.

    The safety, health and care of our community, members and staff is our priority. Program Coordinators are reaching out directly to all families about the cancellation of specific programs and identify specific needs.

    We will also continue to share messaging around hygiene and social distancing on our website and social media accounts. For any non-program related questions, please contact Dean Svoboda at dean@aafscalgary.com.

    AAFS will continue to be a unique place for friendship, kindness and caring within the Calgary autism community. Thank you for supporting our community and especially, our incredible staff and volunteers who have been working so hard during these unprecedented times.

    Please continue to visit www.ahs.ca/covid for the latest Covid-19 Updates. We will continue to update our community on any changes to our programs and services.


  • March 13, 2020 4:05 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Dear AAFS Community,

    We hope everyone is staying safe and warm on this beautiful Friday afternoon!

    In light of recent global events concerning the COVID-19 Coronavirus, we at AAFS are doing our part in due diligence to take preventative precautionary measures to avoid spreading the illness further.

    We also recognize that many members of our community will require support during this time. As of March 14, AAFS has cancelled all 'Non-Essential" Programs; including Community Outings, Specialized Programs and Clubhouse Nights. (We are still doing clubhouse) This closure will be re-evaluated and our community updated by March 22, 2020. 

    Our Clubhouses will remain open to provide care for our VAULT and After School members. We will be limited to no more than 10 members for these programs.

    Program Coordinators will be in touch directly to all families about cancellation of specific programs. Please allow us some time to figure out the financial end of things on pre-registered events and programs.

    For families in need of 'emergency' respite or support due to program cancellations, please contact Anaik Maeseele anaik@aafscalgary.com.

    For any non program related questions, please contact Dean Svoboda- dean@aafscalgary.com

    We will continue to rely on the information and guidance of Alberta Health Services, The City of Calgary and Health Canada to inform our decisions. 

    The members requested not to attend programming fall in the following categories

    • Members who are feeling sick, regardless of their symptoms;
    • Members who have traveled to, or been in close contact with someone who has traveled to, one of the high risk areas (as outlined by the Public Health Agency of Canada) in the past 14 days, even if asymptomatic;
    • Members who have been in contact with an individual diagnosed with COVID-19 within the past 14 days, even if asymptomatic;
    • Members who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, even if asymptomatic;

    Those who show up displaying these symptoms (members, volunteers, and staff included) will be sent home in the interest of protection and care for our community, and the individuals feeling under the weather. We want people to rest up and feel better so that we can enjoy their attendance when they are up for it.

    We will still be an important source of information and direction for our entire community in an attempt to keep you safe and reinforcing healthy practices. AAFS will continue to share messaging around hygiene and social distancing on our website and social media accounts throughout this pause in programming.

    Latest Covid-19 Updates (Alberta Health Services)    https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16944.aspx


  • March 11, 2020 7:00 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Dear AAFS Community,

    As we’re all aware, there is ongoing concern regarding the Coronavirus (COVID-19). The health and safety of our community continues to be our top priority.

    The current risk level in Alberta is considered low (Government of Alberta, 2020) . A higher risk applies to people who develop a fever and/or cough or shortness of breath AND meet any of the criteria below:

    In the 14 days before illness onset, they:

    • Traveled to the following areas: mainland China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Iran, South Korea, Japan, or Italy;
    • Had close contact with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19;
    • Had close contact with a person with acute respiratory illness who was in mainland China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Iran, South Korea, Japan or Italy within 14 days prior to illness onset;
    • Had laboratory exposure to biological material (e.g. primary clinical specimens, virus culture isolates) known to contain COVID-19 virus.
    What is AAFS doing?

    We are taking extra precautions and actions to help our staff and members stay healthy. 

    We encourage all families to use our onsite washrooms for hand washing before the start of each activity or before they arrive for an outing. There is hand sanitizer and wipes around the Clubhouse for your ongoing use.

    We have requested our staff be extra diligent with cleaning and disinfecting surfaces that are used regularly including toys, games and program supplies.

    If your child feels sick, we are asking that you please keep them home. If they have a mild illness, respiratory symptoms, or have a fever (38 C/100.4 F or above), stay home and away from others. If their symptoms get worse, call 811. We will be providing the same instructions to our staff.  Unfortunately, If your child arrives at the clubhouse ill with outward signs of being sick, we will need to send them home.

    What can I do?

    Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, throw the tissue in the trash, and wash your hands. If you don’t have a tissue within easy reach, cough or sneeze into your elbow.

    We have increased our focus around hand hygiene. Frequent hand washing with liquid soap and water for a minimum of 20 seconds, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol to disinfect your hands.

    Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands. Our clubhouse is equipped with three washrooms each with soap and a central sanitizer station for use.

    Our health and hygiene practices provide the best defense against the spread of most contagious illnesses. In addition, here are some guidelines to follow:

    • Avoid touching your face.
    • Use a tissue if you need to cough or sneeze and throw it out immediately. Disinfect your hands immediately after. Cough or sneeze into your elbow (never your hands) if you do not have a tissue.
    • Stay at home if you suffer from a fever, have vomited within 24 hours or have the presence of mucus from the nose or mouth that is not clear in colour.
    • Teach children proper hand washing technique that includes lathering the backs of your hands, between your fingers and under your nails with soap for at least 20 seconds.
    • Disinfect commonly used items on a regular basis such as cellphones.

    We are continuing to keep an eye on official information and guidance concerning COVID-19. Should emergency directives be issued, we will take appropriate action as directed by government officials. Here is a source of up-to-date information.

    Latest Covid-19 Updates (Alberta Health Services)   https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/topics/Page16944.aspx

    We’re hopeful that we can continue to provide opportunities for you and your families through AAFS programs and activities. We’ll continue to host safe and healthy programs for everyone's enjoyment and development.

    For more information, please don’t hesitate to contact us

    Thank you,


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