Access Better Living Inc. / Vie Independante et Enrichie is a non-profit organization that provides a variety of services, resources, and support systems.   We, at ABL, are dedicated to assisting children, seniors, and people with disabilities. We strive to provide excellence in independence by providing support for those who require our services.  Our services include supportive housing, attendant care, home support, and respite care services for people and families with disabilities.

Access Better Living Inc. was formed in 1980 when it was incorporated as a result of a grassroots identification of local housing and support care needs for adults with physical disabilities. Since then, we have grown into an organization that now provides services through seven different programs.  A volunteer Board of Directors, made up of a cross-section of the community, governs us to ensure that our mission statement is realized, and you, our clients, achieve excellence in independence.

Board of Directors

Kim Guillemette

Kim enjoys spending time with her family. She is a strong advocate for those identified with Special Needs and seeks to increase services for them within her community. This cause is very near and dear to her heart as Kim is a mom to three sons, two of whom have special needs themselves. Kim has sought to improve and expand services within Access Better Living in order to ensure sustainability. Her keen sense of justice has assisted the agency become stronger organizationally. She continues to serve as Chair always ensuring that the best practices are followed. Kim is interested in focusing her efforts to meet the needs that are current within our community and that they are met in the most professional and holistic fashion.


Lorraine Laiho

Lorraine is one of the newest members to the board of directors. Wanting to volunteer for a cause that makes a difference, she became a director since 2021. She has been involved in a retrofitting project for the Access Better Living Centre.  Having spent her whole life in South Porcupine, she has been instrumental in using her community connections to bring our Mission Statement to life and announce to her sphere of influence that Access Better Living strives to provide excellence in independence. She has spent 23 years working as an Educational Assistant, but now works in the Children’s Services Department of CDSSAB as a Program Quality Consultant. Through her employment experiences, Lorraine has gained an even greater passion to fight for the betterment of people with challenges.

Lucie Brethour

Lucie has made her membership with the Access Better Living Inc. a perfect dozen – twelve (12) years as a member of the admission committee for our Supportive Housing Program and advocate for those with physical disabilities obtain independence within their own home. Her profession of nursing has allowed Lucie to see the importance of developing individualized service plans that reflect the unique personal supports that those we provide services to require. Her zest for ensuring those who require supports and are having difficulty accessing them is noted as one of her strongest qualities. She continues to live up to ensuring that the highest standards of care are being given to all recipients.

Kathy Loreto

Kathy has been on the board for seven (7) years. Her profession within the Educational System as Special Education Resource Teacher of a High Support Class. She has proven to be an asset when reviewing standard practices and programming within the agency. She is able to not only step up to the plate for our Special Needs programs but is also strongly involved within the Admission Committee for those seeking placement in our Supportive Housing Program who require assistance with physical activities of daily living. Her sense of fairness combined with her deep understanding of the human need for acceptance makes Kathy a strong commodity on this Board of Directors. 

Vicki Butterworth

As the parent of a special needs individual, it was an easy decision to join the board in 2018.  Vicki is happy to contribute ideas and be a part of the agency’s direction. It has always been important to her to have outstanding programming in the community, not only for her son, but for all challenged individuals. ABL provides such programming and helping to facilitate that access is considered a privilege.
Vicki is married with two children and on her down time, enjoys walking, biking, live concerts and travel adventures abroad. She has a diploma in Business Administration – Marketing and has been the Office Administrator at Timmins Animal Hospital for many years.


Steve Kidd

Steve has been on the Board of Directors since 2018 and has assisted in providing guidance to building and maintenance projects.  He was instrumental in advocating for a retrofitting lighting project at our Supportive Housing Complex. As Vice-Chair, he has a keen eye for detail and when reviewing purchases,  always ensures that we are fiscally responsible and quality focused. Steve has been deeply involved in the communities that we serve and is an advocate for those who may be more vulnerable. Steve is a Realtor, and President of Stephen Kidd and Associates Ltd. He has developed strong skill-set with contract consulting in addition to buying and selling residential and commercial real estate.

Welcome from the Executive Director

Thank you for stopping by! We are a not-for-profit agency dedicated to the delivery of quality services, which promote independent living for persons with disabilities. This has been our mission since 1980 and it continues to serve as a beacon of light shining into the future.

We can provide you, our clientele, depending on your requirements, with personal care support services, community involvement, relief in caregiving (respite care), housing, and open communication with the ultimate goal to develop further independence and socialization.

We are so thrilled to tell you that we are able to provide services for children and adults with special needs, adults with physical disabilities, and seniors who require both personal care and home support.

This website will explain all of our services and how you might fit into our community of care. I welcome you to review all of the services that are offered here at Access Better Living and apply today if you feel you would benefit from any program, or perhaps you would like to volunteer to assist us to meet our goal of providing quality services and promoting independence for others in your community.

Feel free to follow us on our website as well or visit us on our Facebook page.

Thank you again for taking the time to visit Access Better Living online.

We look forward to meeting you in person soon.

Carol MacKinnon
Executive Director

Meet Our Team 

Finance/ Administration

Julianne Hardy

Finance Director  julianne.hardy@accessbetterliving.ca

Sylvie Cloutier

Finance Assistant  sylvie.cloutier@accessbetterliving.ca

Susan Martel

Administrative Assistant  Susan@accessbetterliving.ca

Ashley Leduc

Scheduling Coordinator  ashley.leduc@accessbetterliving.ca

Program Coordinators

Jennifer Welch

Home Support Coordinator  jennifer.welch@accessbetterliving.ca

Carole Boucher

Attendant Outreach Coordinator  Carole.Boucher@accessbetterliving.ca

Trista Gough

Assisted Living Coordinator  Trista.Gough@accessbetterliving.ca

Meghan Geddes

Supportive Housing Coordinator  meghan.geddes@accessbetterliving.ca

Angela Allen

Respite Care Coordinator  angela.allen@accessbetterliving.ca

Laura Presseault

Respite Program Coordinator  laura.presseault@accessbetterliving.ca