​Welcome to “The Journey to CONNECT Hamilton” blog to keep you in the loop with our progress toward our third CONNECT location. We are excited to share and document the journey, which is exciting for all dedicated to A Better Way After Brain InjuryTM.

Expected to open in the fall of 2018, there is much work to do before we have a building and are ready to open our doors to our Ontario residents and employees.

CONNECT hosted an open house on Saturday, January 28 from 1-4pm as a requirement for the City of Hamilton’s rezoning process. The event was held in the house currently on the property where CONNECT Hamilton is to be built – ​26 Upper Mount Albion Road.

Despite the cold, snowy weather that day, about half of the 29 neighbours invited attended, along with Councillor Conley, some representatives of Hamilton Health Sciences, Paul Mallard, CONNECT’s planning consultant, our architect team from DPAI Architects, which is designing the building for CONNECT, amongst others.

“The open house was a great event where we were able to meet the neighbours, talk to them about CONNECT and this resource we are bringing to Hamilton,” says Patti Flaherty, President and COO of CONNECT, who grew up in Hamilton and now lives in Vancouver. “We had lots of good questions from the people attending and we were able to have some real conversation around the importance of a resource like this for the people affected by brain injury and stroke and our ability to transition them back home.”

CONNECT CEO John Sherwood travelled from Vancouver to attend the open house and ​says it really helped to solidify in his mind that CONNECT Hamilton will be a reality.

“The level of community engagement and support at the open house was a powerful reminder how great a fit Hamilton is for CONNECT.”

Former CONNECT Lake Country resident Ellie and her husband Luigi from Kelowna were on hand to answer questions and talk about their experience at CONNECT.

Approximately 40 people attended the open house

“I am so happy to attend the open house and speak to people about how my time at CONNECT helped me redesign my life after my accident,” says Ellie. “This will be an amazing resource for Hamilton.”

Patti Flaherty at her childhood home in Hamilton

In December of 2015 Hamilton Health Sciences (HHS) issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a transitional brain injury resource to get people back to the community after brain injury and stroke. CONNECT responded with a proposal in late January, 2016.

In November, 2016, HHS signed a contract with CONNECT as the successful proponent in the RFP process. If all goes well with city approvals, community support, building and development, we will be opening the doors in the fall of 2018.

Stay tuned for regular updates as we continue on this journey to CONNECT Hamilton.