Interagency Council Notebook

September 27, 2020 meeting

Interagency Council is a monthly meeting of representatives of ‘helping agencies’ in Slave Lake.

Pearl Lorentzen
Lakeside Leader

FCSS promoting province-wide communication initiatives
Serena Weipert, with the Town of Slave’s Lake Family and Community Social Services (FCSS), chaired the meeting. She and Gary Roth, Town of Slave Lake director of community services, reported on two province-wide communication initiatives. These are 211 and Data to Action.
“It’s really important to populate it,” said Roth about 211. Once the local information is added, people will be able to call 211 to access any social service. It also gathers data to track emerging needs. So far, nothing is listed in Slave Lake.
Data to Action is focused on mental health and domestic violence, said Weipert. It is also looking for more partners, as so far it appears people are looking for support from churches and other “grass roots” movements more than from AHS, the RCMP, and government social services.

AHS Addictions: changes in how services are delivered, due to COVID
Trina Napier is the Slave Lake youth addiction and tobacco reduction counsellor with Alberta Health Services.
“Since COVID, the provincial building is locked up,” she said. People can’t walk in to addictions and mental health. This means numbers are down; however, people can call in to set up a Zoom, phone or in-person appointment.
“We are looking at starting some presentations and group stuff,” she added. “All the presentations will be done on Zoom.”
Some that are on offer in the next while are psychological first aid, coping with loss, and suicide awareness.
On Tuesdays, AHS has a free Zoom support group. The pamphlet says it is for caregivers of teens or young adults who “identify as transgender, non-binary, gender-nonconforming, or anywhere else on the spectrum of gender diversity.”
AHS addictions also has free recovery kits for anyone dealing with addictions.

Children’s Resource Council: home visitations for families with young kids
Lindsay Davis, Shay Strome, and Christine Boisvert reported about Children’s Resource Council. Strome and Boisvert work in Slave Lake and Wabasca. The council is the new face of family resource network in the area. This includes home visitation for families with children zero to six and parent education and child development for zero to 18. The council is also continuing with Healthy Choices which provides pre and postnatal support.
The team is doing online programs and in-person or online support. These can include one-on-one parenting sessions.
(See ‘New child support in Slave Lake very different than old one’ in the Aug. 19, 2020 Leader for more details).

Slave Lake Public Library has an author doing online readings
The library is open, but events are online, said Suzanne Wilson, library program coordinator. On October 27, children’s author Marty Chan will do two online author readings. In November, there will be another reading by an author. This is geared toward adults.
Escape the Zoom is a virtual escape room. There are plans for a Halloween story walk, which is where pages of a book are set up in windows around town.
The library has an after-school club, but because of space it is online. There are also other programs. Some for kids and others for adults.

MRC/Legacy Centre – things are starting to happen at both locations
There’s a bunch of programs starting at the MRC, said Roth.
“Everything is registered programming.”
One that might not go ahead is in-person after school programming. It has been a while since the town did one, but decided to offer it this year because people are finding it hard to find child care and were asking for it. However, no one had signed up so far at the meeting. If no one signed up by Friday, this program will not go ahead.
Things were also starting to happen at the Legacy Centre.
A program guide is available on the Town of Slave Lake website. There are no printed copies.

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