Community Involvement

2007 Project: Little Mountain Neighbourhood House

Project : Joint ASQ /JDQ Systems Little Mountain Neighbourhood House

Name: Joel Bronstein

Title: Executive Director

Organization: Little Mountain Neighbourhood House

LMNH Team members: Bernice Wong, Claudia Cao, James Shen, Lisa Levitt, Susan Schachter

Mailing Address: 3981 Main Street, Vancouver, BC V5V 3P3

Telephone: 604-879-7113

2: The Volunteers

Name: ASQ Canada, Vancouver Section 0408 (Community Good Works Program)

Team Members: Manjit Parmar (PM), John Apostoli, Luisa Barroga, Brian Amouzegar, Geoff Swanell,
Julia Pop, (all ASQ volunteers)

Steering Team: Richard Vurdela (ASQ), Jon Morris (JDQ Systems Inc.), Rene Clement (ASQ)

Mailing Address: 300-3665 Kingsway Avenue, Vancouver, BC V5R 5W2

Telephone: 604-451-0150

E-mail Address:

3: The Story: $ 5,000 Grant , ASQ American Society for Quality (Canada) Expertise
Joel Bronstein, Executive Director, Little Mountain Neighbourhood House

The ASQ team has been working with some specific aspects of our operations LMNH to improve the quality of the services delivered. Using the six sigma approach, the highly skilled team of volunteers worked through a process of identifying the problem, analyzing and developing a plan for improving our delivery system. The volunteers introduced us to many effective techniques that were initially developed for the business sector, but with adaptation, were useful for our organization. The volunteers have also provided fresh, outside eyes at looking at how we do things, which helped us articulate what we do, why we do it, and is it working or not.

“The application of business practices and approaches into the human service sector through this project has been exciting and a great learning experience. The volunteers have brought their incredible knowledge, experience and their passion to this project, for which we are so grateful.” said Joel Bronstein, Executive Director of Little Mountain Neighbourhood House.

Richard Vurdela, Chair, American Society for Quality (ASQ Canada) Vancouver Section

The ASQ Community Good Works Program connects volunteer quality management practitioners with nonprofit organizations for targeted problem solving and process improvement. The program also offers an opportunity at a $5000.00 grant to finance potential solutions. The non-profit receives expertise, methodology and tools to resolve operational issues and focus more dollars on their core client services. Our member volunteers first and foremost get to give back to their community. They also have the opportunity to use their expertise in a different industry and a different context.

The program brings together three key elements for success:

Team approach: in this case ASQ provided a team of 6 volunteers and partnered with a local consulting firm, JDQ Systems Inc., to provide a rounded set of capabilities.

Project Structure: the assistance is provided in a project format meaning that we tackle something unique (a specific problem or opportunity, not normal operations) and the engagement has a defined beginning and end.

Targeted Focus: the result of the project is an immediate tangible benefit “These projects are fun. They are an opportunity to work with highly motivated people in a skilled project team and do something beneficial for the community. It’s a win for the non-profit and a win for the membership.” said Richard Vurdela, Chair of ASQ Vancouver.

Manjit Parmar, Project Manager, ASQ Community Good Works Program

Little Mountain Neighbourhood House (LMNH) offers over 56 different educational, cultural, recreational and social programs to the community and well over thousand people are registered in a typical year in one of these program. LMNH wanted to improve their registration process with the help of American Society for Quality (ASQ) volunteers. These volunteer are quality practitioners who are using six-sigma methodology to improve the registration process at LMNH. This methodology uses disciplined approach to solving problems or improving process and consists of the following five steps: Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve, & Control (DMAIC). The team is currently at the Improve phase of the project. The team has been meeting once a week for an hour and a half and the project is expected to last about six months.

The team is using their work experience and technical expertise in the quality field to transform the registration process. The team is not only using these six sigma tools to improve the process, but we are also teaching some of these quality tools to the LMNH staff so they can continue to use these tools to improve their other business processes once this project is over and the volunteers have left.

The ASQ volunteers are not only helping non-profit organization & their community by using their technical expertise but they also improving their skills & knowledge by learning new quality tools and different way of solving or improving the process from other members of the team. They also get to practice different kinds of skills set that they would not normally use at their regular work. The volunteer experience gained by the ASQ members also helps them toward achieving their six-sigma certification from the ASQ.