Community for Brain Development launches alongside a fourth Day on the Hill

October 8, 2014

The inaugural meeting of the Community for Brain Development, a NeuroDevNet-initiated gathering of organizations with an interest in neurodisabilities and healthy developmental trajectories took place in Ottawa October 6, 2014.

Senior representatives of 13 organizations, both national and regional in scope, met to share vision and discuss strategy for collaboration in support of children with neurodisabilities and their families and shared interests.

Areas of focus included:

  • Capacity Building & Dynamic Training Opportunities
  • Policy Engagement & Advocacy
  • Knowledge Translation

A keynote address was delivered by Dr. Jane Aubin, Chief Scientific Officer, CIHR, and a plenary session was given by Dr. Brian Kolb, entitled, "Brain development: the good, the bad, and the ugly".

MP Mike Lake, C, (Edmonton, Mill Woods, Beaumont) an enduring ally of the Network and its political engagement efforts, gave a guest lecture, highlighting the importance of mental health in autism spectrum disorder.

A panel discussion followed, with participants including The Hon. Eve Adams, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Health, the Hon. Mike Lake, MP, Dr. Stéphanie Michaud, Program Deputy Director, Networks of Centres of Excellence, and  MP Phil McColeman, C, (Brant), Chair the House Standing Committe on Health (HESA) and Standing Committee on Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities (HUMA).

The following day, members of the Community for Brain Development accompanied NeuroDevNet administrators, researchers and staff on visits to 45 MPs and Senators.

Parliamentarians are crucial to our collaboration within the Community for Brain Development and share in our collective dedication to supporting children with neurodisabilities and their families.

A successful day of political engagement concluded with a reception, hosted by Senator Jim Munson, a true friend to the Network, that saw MPs, Senators and their staff members mingle with the NeuroDevNet/Community for Brain Development delegates.

NeuroDevNet extends deep gratitude to the Parliamentarians and Community for Brain Development for their support and participation.

Top:Senator Jim Munson confers with Dr. Daniel Goldowitz, Scientific Director, NeuroDevNet
Middle: MP Mike Lake addresses the reception hosted by Sen. Munson
Right: MP Carolyn Bennett discusses neurodisabilities with Mr. Patrick Lafferty, Chair of NeuroDevNet's Board of Directors