by Rob More
On Saturday, September 15, the Rural FASD Support Network [Fetal alcohol spectrum disorder] launched their first public meeting at Calvary Bible Church in Smith Falls. The day started with Shelley More, co-founder, sharing the milestones achieved in the past two years, introducing the members of the executive committee, and sharing their mandate, vision and mission. Shelley also pointed out the Network has two functions. The Executive Committee focuses on advocacy while the Caregiver Support Group focuses on supporting families. Tanya Eichler, Psychotherapist, spoke next on “What Does FASD Look Like?” Wendy Reed and Malcolm McIntosh shared what life is like for them and their children living with FASD with very limited supports and understanding. Minister Steve Clark sent his regrets, having been called away to an emergency session at Queen’s Park. Over 45 caregivers, service providers including most of the Open Doors staff, general public primarily from the Calvary Bible Church and children living with FASD attended the launch, which was described as very successful and highly organized. The full presentation can be viewed on the Rural FASD Support Network Facebook page, and the next meeting is scheduled for October 20, at 10:30am, at Calvary Bible Church in Smith Falls. Free child care and refreshments will be served as well.