CWSDS is committed to developing communities of excellence within the Central West Region. CWSDS works collaboratively with service partners to build the community’s capacity and share professional expertise and services. CWSDS also provides community partners access to our space so that their staff can help the people they support achieve their goals.


April, 2022

We are pleased to share that CWSDS participated in a research initiative with Awake Labs and CAMH (Centre for Addiction and Mental Health).  This initiative utilized innovative technology that helps people with intellectual and developmental disabilities manage stress. ​  Specifically, 5 of the people we support had an opportunity to wear a smartwatch that is connected to a mobile device. The smartwatch detects if the person wearing the watch is experiencing stress (e.g., an elevated heart rate) and a notification is then sent to the mobile device that can be used by staff to assist the person in managing their stress. This breakthrough technology allows the staff to monitor any internal changes that are happening physiologically but are not always observable and can therefore enable staff to intervene earlier to support the person in managing their stress and potentially avoid behavioural escalation. Given the success of the research initiative and the effectiveness of the technology for the people we support, the project was recently expanded to an additional 17 people through a successful grant application. The Awake Labs technology will further assist us in helping the people we support reach their full potential and have a greater quality of life.  CWSDS remains committed to ensuring and providing best evidence practices available. For more information on this technology please click on this link



September, 2021

Leading in Developmental Services – We are pleased to announce that Central West Specialized Developmental Services (CWSDS) is the first developmental services congregate care setting, nationally and internationally, to collaborate with the Registered Nurses’ Association of Ontario (RNAO to become a Best Practice Spotlight Organization (BPSO). As a BPSO …
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As a leader in the developmental services sector, CWSDS is proud to partner with Ontario universities and colleges to build knowledge capacities in our communities.  We are pleased to be collaborating with McMaster University, Western University, the University of Toronto, and Humber and Conestoga Colleges to expand students’ understanding of best practices that benefit people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  Our staff are sought out to offer their expertise as guest lecturers and adjunct professors in the educational journeys of students studying general medicine, psychiatry, nursing, behaviour analysis, occupational therapy, speech-language pathology and direct support professional services. It is our pleasure to welcome students to CWSDS to gain first-hand knowledge of developmental services best practices and to meet and interact with some of the wonderful people we support.


Health Considerations Tables for Aging Persons with a Developmental Disability

CWSDS is a contributing member of the Central Region Partnership on Aging and Developmental Disabilities, which is a cross sector partnership dedicated to enhancing the quality of life for older adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and those who support them. Through its partnership relationships with other service providers, CWSDS advances knowledge, skills and understanding of aging persons with IDD.

Persons with IDD may begin to develop age-related changes affecting one or more body systems at an earlier chronological age than typically expected.  CWSDS staff were instrumental in the development of the Health Considerations Tables for Aging Persons with IDD, the purpose of which is to enable staff, family, caregivers and others to compile and report valuable information pertaining to an aging person with intellectual and developmental disabilities. The completed information is intended to be presented at regular medical appointment reviews as well as at acute and emergency care visits.

View the Tables here.

The Central Region Partnership on Aging and Developmental Disabilities emerged from the regional activities associated with the Ontario Partnership on Aging and Developmental Disabilities (OPADD).  This informal provincial partnership of service providers in the continuum of seniors services and developmental disabilities is dedicated to enhancing quality of life for older adults with IDD through transition planning that includes equal access to seniors’ community and supportive living programs.  Activities involve regional committees, local cross sector pilot projects, provincial associations, planning bodies, educational institutions, researchers and policy-makers.



CWSDS prides itself in engaging in strong collaborative efforts across the community, region and province.  CWSDS is an integral member of the Wellington/Dufferin, Halton and Peel Developmental Services Planning Tables, a partnership of community developmental services and cross sector agencies dedicated to enhancing services and supports for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.  In 2021 the Halton and Peel DS Planning Tables chose to explore and review Quality of Life (QOL) initiatives and measures across the communities it serves.  The initial finding was that developmental services agencies in Halton and Peel are already implementing many innovative best/promising practices to enhance the Quality of Life of persons supported and their families.

We are now entering the second phase of the QOL project.  The focus will be to develop a Quality of Life: Promising Practices Toolkit by collating and introducing numerous best/promising practices already being implemented by developmental services agencies in Halton and Peel.  With a vision of inclusion, belonging, choice and support, the toolkit will highlight the following priorities within Quality of Life:

  • person-centered and strengths-based services
  • hopes and dreams
  • choice and self-determination now and for the future
  • enhancing health, wellbeing and safety
  • respecting culture and religion
  • feedback and redress



Central West Specialized Developmental Services is one of 27 Peel organizations that are partnered together to provide resources and consultation to people who have a developmental disability and/or dual diagnosis and who are in a crisis situation.  Through assessment and coordination of short-term and transitional support resources, and in collaboration with Network Partners, PCCN’s mission is to support children and adults, who have a developmental disability and dual diagnosis, in overcoming crisis.  Please visit the website here.


CHRISTIAN HORIZONS operates a day program at CWSDS for people with developmental disabilities.

PEEL HALTON DUFFERIN ACQUIRED BRAIN INJURY SERVICES (PHDABIS) has their own building on the CWSDS property from which they operate services for adults with an acquired brain injury.

THISTLEOAKS runs a daycare centre in one of the former CWSDS townhouses and operates a before and after-school program, using the CWSDS gym and a space across from the CWSDS pool.

CWSDS also rents the pool and gym to local organizations, businesses and recreation associations.  Availability may be impacted by Covid-19 precautions and restrictions.