The Moose Jaw Family Wellness Centre celebrated its grand opening on Friday, Oct. 11, 2019 ushering in a new era of collaborative services and a focus on supporting the wellness of children and families in the community. Jeannie Munro, Executive Director for Primary Health Care South West, welcomed those gathered for the event thanking those involved for their dedication in bringing the centre to fruition.
“We’re bringing together services from several other locations into one location to help promote collaborative care, build inter-disciplinary teams and provide a seamless, ’tell-your-story-once’ experience for our community,” said Munro. “We’re all about improving and protecting the health of our community and supporting the well-being of children and families.”
The Moose Jaw Family Wellness Centre was born of the idea to create an integrated space to provide all the programs and services that support the health of communities, children and families. That includes more preventative measures like immunization and breastfeeding support that are wellness forward, but also services like mental health and addictions services that are more treatment-based.
Vice President of Integrated Rural Health, Karen Earnshaw, shared with the more than 50 people and staff in attendance – including local MLA Warren Michelson – that collaborative workspaces and patient and family centred care are very important in how the Saskatchewan Health Authority delivers care in our communities. That’s what made the underutilized Pioneer Housing facility the ideal location to renovate – and fit nicely with the family wellness aspect, bringing together the young and old.
“Our Fall Family Festival to celebrate our grand opening epitomizes how we want to approach the wellness of Moose Jaw children and families,” said Sherri Buhler, director of Primary Health Care in the Moose Jaw area. “There’s something for everyone and our staff are taking a hands-on approach to making it the best experience possible for those they serve.”
The festival featured activities for children of all ages, from colouring and painting stations to playing with clay and creating a “thankful tree.” Most of the stations were run by SHA staff and volunteers, including those who stepped up to do some face painting. The festival wrapped up with cake and hot chocolate followed by a great story time with Christine Boyczuk of the Moose Jaw Literacy Network – including a surprise visit from her “wiener” dog that put smiles on everyone’s faces.