Brock Churches Recognized for Accessibility Improvements

Brock Citizen
By Scott Howard
Posted October 6, 2014
Terry Vestby of St. Andrew’s United Church in Sunderland accepted the award from Brock Township Accessibility Advisory committee member Donna Schirle, Ward 3 Councillor Walter Schummer, Mayor Terry Clayton and advisory committee member Bart St. Dennis on Friday (Sept. 26) afternoon. Photo by Scott Howard

(BROCK TWP.) A pair of local churches have been recognized for their efforts to improve accessibility.

Members of council and the volunteer Accessibility Advisory Committee presented 2014 Accessibility Awards to St. Andrew’s United Church in both Beaverton and Sunderland last week.

Now in its second year, the award is presented annually to organizations or businesses in Brock that have shown a concerted effort to improve accessibility, including physical alterations or new programs and features that reduce barriers and permit greater access to services for those with disabilities.

“The purpose of this award is to thank the organizations and businesses for their efforts to improve accessibility and to encourage others to do the same,” added Ward 3 Councillor Walter Schummer, council’s representative on the committee.

Improvements made at St. Andrew’s in Beaverton included the installation of a new ramp, elevator; purchasing of 10 listening devices; accessibility training for all employees and volunteers; and the ongoing development of an accessible walkway from the parking lot around the side of building to the main entrance where the elevator is located.

In Sunderland, upgrades included replacement of their chair lift with an elevator; a new wide sidewalk leading to the automatic door entrance door was installed.

“We are proud to be honoured by Brock Township with this award but that these improvements would not have been made possible without the support of the congregation, community, and the Ontario Trillium Foundation,” said Terry Vestby, chair of St. Andrew’s in Sunderland

“it is great to be recognized for the accomplishments we’ve made and it encourages us to continue along this journey of improving accessibility,” added Reverend James Grunden of St. Andrew’s in Beaverton.

TD Bank in Beaverton was the inaugural recipient of the Accessibility Award.

In addition to working with local businesses and organizations, members of the Accessibility Advisory Committee have developed a multi-year plan to prevent and remove barriers for persons with disabilities in municipal properties, like library branches, arenas, town halls and parks.

For more information on the committee, call the Brock Township municipal office at 705-432-2355.

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