John’s CLBC Editorial Board Story
By: John O’Neill
I’m Johnny O from Nelson, BC. I’m a radio announcer on the Kootenay Co-op Radio Station.
I was at a Self-Advocacy Leadership conference in Vernon in 2015 when I first heard about the CLBC Editorial Board and that they were looking for a representative from the Kootenays.
Everybody knows I have a loud voice, so this was a challenge and something new to try using my knowledge and experience as a self-advocate. It was an opportunity to contribute my voice to CLBC and bring information back to my community.
Over the 18 months that I was on the board I got to travel to Vancouver for meetings with other members. I met leaders from around the province and this helped me to start a self-advocacy group in my community.
I like the comradeship that we built as a board. I like hearing other people’s ideas and knowing about other self-advocacy groups. I liked being able to take information back to my group. I was able to publish my story in the CLBC Celebrate Diverse Abilities magazine. I wrote about my life and the importance of service clubs in my life.
I always looked forward to coming to meetings because I met friends and it was fun to travel to Vancouver. I had to miss two meetings because of bad weather in Castlegar, or Cancelgar, as we like to call it! I was very disappointed when I couldn’t make a meeting.
Take a chance, challenge yourself, check it out. If you feel it’s not for you, that’s ok. But for me, it changed my life. It was a blast and I made a lot of new friends.
Link to Community Living British Columbia’s (CLBC) Editorial Board: