Pond Inlet wellness centre set to open thanks to new funding
Hamlet needed $100,000 to finish project; $550,000 boost allows for expanded programming
Pond Inlet is weeks away from welcoming the community into its new wellness centre.
After an initial investment of $500,000 from the territorial government to fund the build, the hamlet fell $100,000 short this past June to finish the project.
At the time, David Stockley, chief administrative officer of Pond Inlet, expressed frustration with the delay, and said the community would look to private donations to bridge the funding gap.
Good news came in the fall when the hamlet’s application for $550,000 from the Government of Canada’s Green and Inclusive Community Buildings program to complete the centre was approved.
The new money not only allows the hamlet to complete the centre, but has increased its scope and size both in terms of infrastructure and service offerings.
“We will be able to accommodate a lot more people in the wellness centre now,” said Stockley, in an interview in December.
“There are probably about 40 to 45 expecting moms here now, they need help in a lot of different areas.”
The centre has also been expanded to include two fully equipped, commercial-grade kitchens for cooking classes and meal preparation for community members.
New and expectant mothers will be able to gather at the wellness centre to mingle, access support and participate in classes.
The wellness centre is located close to the shelter for women and girls, which will enable easy access to critical support for community members staying in the shelter, Stockley said.
The facility will also accommodate the hamlet’s wellness co-ordinator office, with additional space allocated to the Department of Justice and victim services and a separate room for online counselling funded mainly through the territorial Department of Family Services.
There will also be space for delivering group programs for community members, including prenatal programs, programming for elders, and sewing classes, said Stockley.
Stockley projected the new centre will be ready to open at the end of January.