ConnectWell Community Health 2023-2027 Strategic Planning

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A strong strategic plan includes many voices. We look forward to your thoughts and engagement in developing the 2023-2027 ConnectWell Community Health Strategic Plan


ConnectWell Community Health is in the process of developing our strategic plan for 2023-2027. We value your input to this process. This Backgrounder is intended to provide you with a snapshot of the current state of ConnectWell Community Health and its services and programs. It will serve as a primer on ConnectWell Community Health. We invite you to complete the ConnectWell Community Health strategic planning survey to share your thoughts and perspectives (click the link attached or go to our website at More details about the strategic planning process can be found at the end of this document.

About ConnectWell Community Health

ConnectWell Community Health is a multi-service, multi-site charitable organization. In 2019, we re-branded the organization as ConnectWell Community Health. We originated through a voluntary integration of multiple agencies starting in 2001. Some parts of the organization have been providing services across our region since 1979.

ConnectWell Community Health has 240+ employees, a volunteer Board of Directors and 80+ volunteers who work together to support people and communities in achieving and maintaining their best possible health and social well-being. Our staff dedication and retention is excellent with many staff having worked with us for 15, 20, 25 and 30+ years.

Who we serve?

ConnectWell serves a diverse range of clients who access our community-centered primary and allied health care, autism and developmental services, health promotion, community development and mental health services and supports in the rural communities across the Counties of Lanark, Renfrew, and Leeds and Grenville. Some of our services are also available virtually without geographic restrictions.

ConnectWell Community Health

We Believe

In the right of all people to have conditions and resources for good health, including peace, shelter, education, food, income, access to health care, a stable ecosystem, sustainable resources, social justice, equity, and social inclusion.

Our Vision

A community that is healthy and just and supportive of all.

Our Mission

Together we support people and communities in achieving and maintaining their best possible health and social well-being.

Our Commitments

  • to provide holistic programs and services that are respectful, relevant, and effective
  • to reduce barriers that prevent people and communities from achieving their full potential
  • to enable people to remain in, and participate in, the life of their community
  • to seek and share knowledge and resources so that individuals and communities are empowered
  • to manage our resources responsibly


Who funds our organization?

Our funding sources include the Ontario Ministry of Children, Community & Social Services, Ontario Ministry of Health, Public Health Agency of Canada, local partnerships, and funding received from charitable granting bodies, individual donors, and special events.

The geography we serve

A map shoing ConnectWell Service locations

Our core focus

We are actively involved in monitoring, participating, and advocating on the determinants of health so that the unique circumstances and needs of rural citizens and rural communities are addressed. ConnectWell plays a vital role in helping individuals of all ages, from communities across our region achieve optimal health and well-being. We do this by helping people in our rural communities have ready access to:

  • a multidisciplinary team of primary and allied health care providers who treat and manage health conditions (including acute and chronic) close to home
  • a multidisciplinary team of qualified and experienced staff who provide evidence-based core services for autistic children (including behavioural supports, speech-language services, occupational therapy, and mental health)
  • Early intervention services for children at risk (infant and child development, early integration program, transition to school and school readiness)
  • effective, caring and coordinated support for children, youth and adults with developmental delays that can also include speech and language difficulties, behavioural concerns, and occupational therapy.
  • social recreation and family respite opportunities for children, adults and youth with developmental disability and Autism (including therapeutic riding, day programs, respite homes, summer camps)
  • coordinated service planning and systems navigation for health care, mental health, and developmental services,
  • mental health counselling and peer supports,
  • primary care, information, education, support, and referrals to manage chronic or complex health and medical conditions, including, addictions, anxiety, autism, cancer, COPD/asthma, depression, diabetes, hypertension, speech and language difficulties, among many others,
  • group programs to help people learn new skills or refine existing skills to improve their own health and well-being, meet new and supportive friends, and get more actively involved in community life,
  • information and supports to have healthy babies and raise healthy children, and community-based programs to improve maternal and infant health, reduce the incidence of unhealthy birth weights, promote and support breastfeeding and to strengthen community supports for pregnant women, their partners and families.
  • specialized supports for seniors (for example: memory care, falls prevention, palliative care); and much more.

Much of the work we do is accomplished through collaborative partnerships with dozens of organizations, networks, and coalitions. Given our large rural geography, ConnectWell plays leadership and support roles in several local planning tables including Developmental Service providers, the Lanark, Leeds Grenville Ontario Health Team (OHT), the Ottawa Valley OHT, Kids Come First Health Team and Special Needs Strategy to name a few.

Our strategic directions for 2017 – 2022

Our current strategic plan had ConnectWell focused on the following strategic directions. We have made significant progress on these directions. We are sharing them to provide context for our current work.
We will…

  • maintain and further develop excellence in meeting health and community needs
  • provide leadership and work towards equity to sustain and build the health and well-being of our rural communities
  • promote the engagement and well-being of staff and volunteers to strengthen our organization.

The current state of ConnectWell Community Health

Our dedicated teams of staff, volunteers and partners value the services and supports we provide to the clients and communities. As we plan for our future directions, here are some current issues to consider.

Current Issues impacting across ConnectWell (Mental Health, Primary Care, Respite, Developmental Services and Community Programs/supports)
  • Increasing demands for all our services
  • Growing wait times
  • On-going lack of funding and resources to meet community need
  • Increasingly complex needs
  • Staff/volunteer recruitment and retention
  • Continued COVID pandemic stress on staff, clients, and communities
  • Changes in funding models and service delivery for specific programs (i.e. Autism services)
  • Large population of unattached residents to primary care, especially in Renfrew County
  • Lack of respite spaces/supports for our clients with complex developmental needs, mental health needs and Autism leading to greater numbers of people going into crisis


Listening to our partners

We value participant, client, staff, and partner feedback and continually gather this in a variety of ways to inform our priorities, our practices, and our advocacy efforts. Past feedback from participants, clients, staff, and partners has been invaluable to shaping our directions and services. We look forward to learning more from you to help inform our future directions. Thank you in advance for your time and support.

Coming up next: The Strategic Plan – partner engagement process

March 2023 Staff and Partner Survey Launched
April 2023 Three (3) Virtual Facilitated Conversations – Organizational Partners, Clients/Caregivers, Mixed Staff
Four (4) In-Person Facilitated Conversations – Board of Directors, Senior Staff Leadership and Managers, Clients/Caregivers, Mixed Staff
In-House Facilitated Conversations with Staff Teams and Volunteer Teams
May 2023 Consolidating Survey and Facilitated Conversation Results
June 2023 Launch of the ConnectWell 2023 – 2027 Strategic Plan


We welcome your input to our Strategic Plan

Use this Link to access ConnectWell Community Health – Strategic Plan Survey.

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