How Can I Encourage You…..


If you ask a question and I give you an answer…I am helping you.

If you ask a question and I show you how to look for an answer…I am encouraging your ability to be resourceful in finding answers on your own.

If I block all the things that can be difficult for you…I am helping you.

If I show you how to deal with the things that can be difficult for you…I am encouraging your ability to be prepared for difficult things.

If I pick you up each time you fall…I am helping you.

If I show you how to get up when you fall…I am encouraging your ability to be resilient when falling in the future.

If I tell you what you need…I am helping you.

If I ask you what you need…I am encouraging your ability to be aware of your own needs for yourself.


Now…how can I encourage you?


~Tami Schaafsma

Lessons to be learned and peppers to be cut.

It is my belief that we (meaning anyone who assists/supports anyone else) cannot do our job or fulfill our purpose without learning lessons of our own…sometimes they are a casual awareness of enlightenment, and sometimes they come with a cartoon sledge hammer with the words ‘Duh and Eureka’ on it!

Welcome to my sledge hammer moment… Continue reading

Finding that Home of Your Own.

Sending out a HUGE CONGRATULATIONS to Sean, a former TIFS participant, who has recently moved into his own apartment with his brother and a friend.

This is Sean’s first move away from his parents’ home and while initially he had planned to find an apartment in the community surrounding his family’s home, an opportunity opened up that put him in another location completely.  When asked about this significant change, Sean stated that he was willing to try it and see how it goes.  He noted one important feature which was a major consideration…being close to various bus routes which is his main transportation for groceries,  and his volunteer job.

During his time in TIFS, Sean showed his ability to ask questions, be responsible for what needs to get done, preserver (especially while waiting for a bus in the winter), and take chances…all qualities which will assist in furthering his drive to become more confident and independent.  Add to this his fantastic natural supports through family and friends, and he has a future filled with unlimited possibilities.

Again…congratulations Sean… you have worked hard to achieve this stage, may the rest be as fantastic a journey as this one!

All the best from TIFS.

~Tami Schaafsma

Budgeting CENTS: Step ONE

A hot topic of conversation that frequently occurs between my manager and I, is about budgeting and money and the challenges in educating and coaching our participants about it.  I feel confident in saying that most of the participants…and not just those who have difficulties understanding basic math… struggle with this area, and that it is one of the major concerns for parents in relation to the preparation of their adult child living independently.

So, what’s the solution? Continue reading

App Happy!

Ok, by now most of you have probably heard it…“there’s an app for that”.  Funny thing is who ever said this first was right!  Apps to teach you math, how to cook, to read you your email, to remind you to drink water, to help you sleep…you name it, it’s out there…it has become, wait for it….an APPY WORLD.  (Yeah, I can’t believe I just typed that either!) Continue reading

The Right To BE…

Most often with the work I do, connections with people are only for a short time, and then they move on with their journey.  Where possible, I like to later touch base and check in to see how they are and what they are doing; these moments to me, are similar to having a sequel to a favorite movie be released, or an additional chapter added into a favorite book…and often, these moments just need to be shared.

I would like to tell you about Justin and his mom Susan. Continue reading