FUTFS Newsletter 17 (August 2022)

2022-08-09 11:34

For You Telecare Family Service (FUTFS) assists individuals and families from all walks of life to overcome cultural, emotional, and psychological barriers through a wide range of counselling and educational services and programs. In collaboration with other social service organizations, FUTFS raises awareness of social issues and supports clients in the community through the progression of a healthy lifestyle and gradual integration into Canadian society.

Programs & Services in August 2022

Mind & Motion 2022 (Youth Program)

Mind & Motion is a two-week youth summer volunteer program which will run from August 2 to 12 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. This program is an opportunity for teenagers to learn how to get along, gain leadership skills, and help them discover what careers they may choose in the future. The Mind & Motion Program will be conducted both online and offline. Volunteer work and camp will be done in cooperation with other institutions. Through various workshops and activities, they will learn about coping skills, health issues, emotions (how to control and release them), and education on how to live a healthy life after the pandemic. *Fifty volunteer hours will be provided.

Healthy Life Survey for Youth & Seniors

As the times and the world change rapidly, people’s wishes and desires also change. As a family, social, and community service organization, we must always keep in mind that to be sensitive to people’s needs. This survey has two worthy purposes. First, we need to understand the difficulties and psychological states that seniors are experiencing due to COVID-19, find out about their most urgent needs when they return to their normal lives. Second, analyze the data in order to provide programs and services that are necessary and appropriate for them.

ENE Project : Life Conversation for Youth

‘Life Conversation,’ a part of the ENE Project, offers time for youth to talk about their lives and needs.  In speaking with an interviewer, youth will be able to share and open up about their stories in a safe setting. The goal of this activity is for youth to get to know themselves deeply and talk about their careers or personal difficulties. This one-hour conversation will help youth cope with their present situations and create healthy lifestyles. All conversations will be kept confidential.

ACCESS Project: Conversation Window for Seniors

‘Conversation Window’ is one of the activities in implementing the ACCESS project.  The purpose of this activity is to support healthy and happy lives for seniors and to allow them to share their stories through positive dialogue. We recognize that seniors have various difficulties such as physical, psychological, economic, family and social relationships, but we want them to see that they do not have to solve them on their own. Through ‘Conversation Window,’ the seniors will be able to connect with the local community, share with experts, be cared for, get a reprieve from loneliness and isolation, and obtain various information and the emotional stability necessary for a healthy life. All conversations will be kept confidential.

The BASE Project

The purpose of the BASE Project is as follows: 1) Conduct education on the roles and responsibilities of Directors related to spreading the right volunteer spirit and counselling concept to the Korean community, which is the purpose of FUTFS; 2) Find out the functions and needs of the Board of Directors through a meeting with leaders of other organizations; 3) Improve their psychological health by improving their EQ and resiliency, conversation, and relationship skills to achieve positive change and growth in the dynamics of the group; 4) Educate and train people to return to their respective groups to help them to function better with their own unique volunteer spirit.

The EARS Project

The purpose of the EARS project is to enhance resiliency skills for youth and build them the capacity for the importance of their advocacy healthy well-living and to find out if it can bring positive change and results and to put it into practice. Activities to achieve positive change and growth results are 1) starting from the Launching Day, where participants can be recruited and the EARS project can be announced, 2) educational workshops through training and group activities to discuss with the youth and empower them to stand on their own, and to increase the appropriate resilient skills (6 months for 12 months) sessions including video and vision board), 3) education workshops through training and activities for parents (4 sessions), 4) FORUM, an activity for youths and parents, and 5) final activity, video presentation and evaluation day.

English Conversation Class

FUTFS provides the opportunity to have fun through informative English education classes in order to help trained volunteers do volunteer work without language barriers. This class is held every Tuesday from 10:30 a.m. until noon. It is free and anyone who wishes to attend may do so.

Community Day 2022

Community Day will be held on Saturday, August 27 from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. We will invite everyone, from children to seniors, who could not gather due to COVID-19 and invite them to look back and share their lives and activities after the pandemic.  Participants will have time to share more active, positive thoughts and attitudes for life after the pandemic, and hope for healthy and happy lives.

On Community Day, we will announce the progress of the ENE Project, the ACCESS Project for Seniors, and the BASE Project for Community Leaders, and provide and promote detailed information on new programs, projects, and services to be held in the future. In particular, we will introduce the EARS Project, a project for youth that will be held soon.

Ways in which adopting IT can help a social service agency aid in the development of local communities

I am currently in charge of computer-related administration at For You Telecare Family Service (FUTFS). I was born and raised in South Korea and had several video game consoles and 486, Pentium computers at home. I always had the latest electronic devices as I grow up. Thus, I naturally became immersed in electronic devices. As I got older, my professional life became related to IT (information and communication technology). Since my work consists of looking at computer screens all the time, I tend to spend more time alone compared to other jobs, and so have less interaction with others.

However, interaction with others is necessary for everyone. For instance, it is impossible to learn something without interaction with the teacher. Interaction with other employees occurs in the workplace. But how to have interaction with others about things other than studies or work? Some people engage in religious activities or join a club. However, when there is no common connection, such as religion or hobbies, I think FUTFS should have the capability to connect people and help individuals grow.

It is important for people to experience a variety of things in as many fields as possible. I feel it is important to help people enjoy the activities they choose to participate in.  For this to be possible, we need to be able to offer a variety of activities and programs. We can help participants discover their interests by running various programs in basic courses such as sing-along, volunteering, counselling education, counselling, dance, computer training, computer animation, etc. There are workshops that teach how to make videos and workshops that teach how to make pictures and videos with computer graphics-related software using IT tools. In general, such workshops are quite in demand.

Prior to COVID-19, most social service agencies provided only offline programs and services, so there was a limit to what could be provided. To conduct a workshop offline, a lot of computers are needed and enough physical space for the participants. However, this is difficult for social service agencies with little capital. Because of COVID-19, many programs and services moved online.  Fortunately, online programs and services can easily be conducted through the internet, allowing personnel to provide various programs and services to participants. Since FUTFS only provided non-IT-related services, it was difficult to recruit personnel who could provide IT-related programs and services.  Even if such personnel are recruited, it is often difficult for people who work in a computer-related industry to visit our organization.

We strive to revitalize and develop the local community in the GTA by providing diverse programs to Korean-Canadians and Canadians in general. In addition to these educational programs and services, FUTFS helps individuals and communities in Toronto by providing volunteer activities, outreach, and counselling. Most of these are available online. We hope that what we provide can help you and contribute to the development of the community and Toronto.

Seung-woo Ham (IT Administrator at For You Telecare Family Service)
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