Central Alberta’s first Centre for Positive Relationships opens in Sylvan Lake

The Sylvan Lake location is the first of 13 such centres to open this fall.

Central Alberta’s first Centre for Positive Relationships and Regional Training Centre officially opened its doors yesterday afternoon.

The centre’s opening included a short program attended by members of the public, Central Alberta Regional Vision for Non-Violence Coalition members and dignitaries from local and provincial government.

The centre has been in the works for a number of years, and Alissa McDonald, Community Development Coordinator with Family and Community Support Services (FCSS), and Colleen Lewis, Central Alberta Regional Vision for Non-Violence Coordinator, said to see the centre finally open is “amazing.”

“We got the grant in March and started working on the space in April. It has been a really quick process to get it to this point,” Lewis said.

The centre in Sylvan Lake is the first of it’s kind in Central Alberta, but soon another 12 centres just like it will follow.

Lewis and McDonald will work with the 12 other communities that are members of the coalition, Blackfalds, Benalto, Bentley, Bowden, Delburne, Eckville, Elnora, Innisfail, Lacombe, Rimbey, Rocky Mountain House and Stettler, to open their own centres in their communities.

“Each centre will be created to work for their community,” Lewis said.

“What will tie them all together is that each centre in all our communities will have the same training and resources available,” said McDonald.

The resources in include a a small library of books and pamphlets for families to use, along with consistent use of a common language and the same training used to prevent and create awareness.

McDonald hopes the centres will help to alleviate the stigma surround family violence and bullying.

This will be done through education and creating open communication, she says.

“Family violence is more than just abuse inside the family, parents and children. It extends to grandparents, friends even co-workers,” explained McDonald. “Communication and education is a huge part of it.”

The Centre for Positive Relationships will work to become a thread in the community fabric, by creating awareness and being available to those who need help.

Lewis says she wants the Vision for Non-Violence to become a well-known and staple in every community in Central Alberta.

Already the program and the new centre is gaining traction. Minister of Community and Social Services Irfan Sabir said in a video message the centre is an example of the good will in Alberta.

“The work that is being done through the coalition is a huge step in the right direction,” Sabir said.

Ken Dropko, the executive director for FCSS Branch, said he was proud to see a movement like this start in rural Alberta.

“It is amazing and says a lot about the will of rural Alberta and its people,” Dropko said.

During his speech, Dropko also said he would like to see the program started in Central Albert expand throughout the province.

This is already in the works, according to Lewis. The communities of Hanna and Drumheller have been in contact with the coalition to join.

Lewis says they are open to having other communities join their coalition, but feel these two towns may be a little far away, and would have to spend a lot of time on the road to get to meetings and conferences.

“We have been in contact and have suggested supplying them with our resources to set up their own coalition and conference,” said Lewis.

The Centre for Positive Relationships and Regional Training Centre is now open and is located on the second floor of the Sylvan Lake Family and Community Centre.

The other 12 centres will open through out the autumn at the discretion of each community.

 

Dignataries, MLA Don MacIntyre, Sylvan Lake Mayor Sean McIntyre and Executive Director of FCSS Branch Ken Dropko were the first to tour the new centre on Sept. 7. The centre includes a small library of resources as well as Lakeview Parent Link’s Family Liason Advocate. Photo by Megan Roth/Sylvan Lake News

Just Posted

Fish for free

No license is required to ice fish on Family Day weekend

Students to teach principles of self-awareness

Fox Run students will be sharing “U Rock”, a program designed to instill kindness and compassion

Reward offered to find man charged in 2006 murder

RCMP are offering up to $5000 for information leading to the arrest of Kevin Brown

Background checks required for retail cannabis locations

Strict rules and regulations for retail locations was announced at a press conference this morning

Adults and youths charged in multiple armed robberies

Maskwacis and Wetaskiwin RCMP solved multiple armed robberies investigations

WATCH: Red Deer celebrates one year out from 2019 Canada Games

Community gathers at Great Chief Park to commemorate Games milestone

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

VIDEO: B.C. deer caught obeying traffic signs

A herd of deer in Fernie, B.C. is getting attention online after stopping for a stop sign

Petition wants fundraiser dropped for family of man cleared in Boushie’s death

Group says GoFundMe is profiting from the young Indigenous man’s death

Porch lights turn on for Canadian teen behind #BeccaToldMeTo movement

New Brunswick’s Rebecca Schofield had asked her Facebook followers to perform random acts of kindness

Calgary man dies in Mexico following sudden illness

Troy Black was with his wife, Lindsay, in Puerto Vallarta when he began vomiting blood on Thursday

Virtue and Moir break their own world record

Virtue and Moir break short dance record to sit first in ice dance at Olympics

New doping charge could hurt Russia’s chance at reinstatement

Russia could lose its chance to be reinstated before the end of the Winter Olympics because of a doping charge against curling bronze medallist Alexander Krushelnitsky.

‘Black Panther’ blows away box office with $192M weekend

In estimates Sunday, Disney predicted a four-day holiday weekend of $218 million domestically and a global debut of $361 million.

Most Read