Positive feedback provided by team of North American peers
Lisa Bailey

Her excitement was brimming when the employment specialist learned that posAbiliites Employment Service had received kudos from Commission on Accreditation of Rehabilitation Facilities (CARF) Canada surveyors during the recent accreditation process.

It’s the kind of resonating effect that executive director Fernando Coelho sees in the organization as a result of a successful third-party review of posAbilities’ business practices and program delivery against international standards.

“People feel a huge sense of pride,” he says, noting posAbilities has earned three consecutive, three-year accreditations — the highest designation possible — since first undergoing the process in 2002. 

CARF accreditation awarded to posAbilities Employment Service.

Fernando says he’s confident the organization will earn receive another three-year accreditation based on the surveyors’ feedback that concluded their extensive, three-day evaluation last month.

The CARF team of peers from around North America sampled about 20 programs across posAbilities spectrum of services as part of their evaluation of about 860 international standards.

As part of the process, they identified posAbilities’ strengths in a number of program areas. They referenced the Can You Dig It? initiative, Don’t Sweat It social enterprise, and the employment program.

The team noted that posAbilities “is constantly looking for different ways of delivering its service and meeting the needs of the individuals that it supports,” Fernando says.

Elaborating on this point, he says changing demographics bring different needs; individuals currently supported are aging, while those people about to or who have just become supported have experienced integration and been through the entire school system.

“The last couple of years we’ve been very busy as an organization redesigning our services and that’s also part of our strategic plan,” Fernando says.

He says the CARF surveyors’ positive feedback and very few recommendations for action validate the work performed by posAbilities staff every day.

Accreditation also reaffirms the organization’s commitment to best practices and the highest International standards in social-service delivery, and to continuous quality enhancement.

“Accreditation keeps us focused, it keeps organizations doing what they need to do – especially social-services organizations – to remain relevant in terms of the service that they’re asked to provide,” Fernando says.

PosAbilities expects to receive is formal report from CARF Canada in about five weeks.

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