Journeying from Ocala to Sarasota, staff at The Ora Clubhouse spend the day with us, filling all of our cups.
One of the loveliest things about the Clubhouse culture is how humbly we seek advice and inspiration from one another, and how readily we give it. When Leda Perez and Alison Roberts, the director and assistant director of the Ora Clubhouse in Ocala, FL. reached out to schedule a visit with us, we were more than happy to oblige. The Ora Clubhouse is just over a year old, and as they develop their program, they are taking a look at their neighboring Clubhouses to see what “best practices” they might take home to implement.
Upon arrival, they were given a tour of the building before splitting up to work in the teams with our members. Leda had the opportunity to sit in on our Business & Technology’s yearly Planning Day, an auspicious event that shapes the team’s future. Leda added much to the conversation, making astute suggestions that we will most certainly use. Alison worked with members in our culinary team before being whisked off to the Pines of Sarasota where she met Academy member Ian Churchill as he was performing his dietary aide job as part of our Transitional Employment (TE) program. The Ora Clubhouse is just beginning to develop their TE program, and Alison was excited to see it in action.
The women joined us for lunch before saying heartfelt goodbyes. They both expressed that they were inspired from their time with us. Alison had this to say: “I came to the Academy with an empty cup, knowing that it would be filled. But the humility and service that we received from members and staff was above and beyond my expectations. Thank you, Academy, for being a light and experience that we will carry back to The Ora Clubhouse of Ocala, Fl.”
We got as much out of the visit as Leda and Alison did. It’s a great pleasure to invite people in to see what we do here, especially when they “speak the same (Clubhouse) language.” These opportunities serve to make us more resolute in our practices while at the same time, keeping us flexible and open to new ideas. We’ve said it before, and we will say it again and again: we are always stronger together.