(File photo by Advocate staff)

Red Deer champions Lending Cupboard

Alberta Urban Municipalities Association resolution

Red Deer is standing up for organizations like The Lending Cupboard by advocating for more provincial funding for organizations that lend medical equipment.

Red Deer will be putting a resolution forward at the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association 2017 conference in November asking the province to encourage Alberta Health Services to increase its funding, as well as provide more support from Alberta Seniors and Housing and Persons With Developmental Disabilities.

“They do ultimately bring efficiency to Alberta Health Services. We’re asking the provincial government to help support efforts throughout the province,” Mayor Tara Veer said.

It’s the first time a resolution to support medical equipment lending initiatives will go to AUMA.

Last fall the nonprofit Lending Cupboard in Red Deer released a Community Needs Assessment Report outlining the increasing demand for its services.

Executive director Dawna Morey said there’s been 800 per cent growth over 10 years, and over 10 per cent since last year.

It is searching for ways to address the need for a larger facility, a bigger budget, and more staff and volunteers.

The Lending Cupboard will have new hours as of July 1. It’s not open on Monday because of the holiday but thereafter on Monday, Wednesday and Friday it will be open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Morey said her charity is finalizing a contract with AHS to provide a slight increase in funding for people with hip and knee replacements.

“But we’re still not seeing anything for any of the Home Care clients that we serve and the rest of it. The largest percentage are people from Home Care and other kinds of needs that are out in the community,” Morey said.

“We still rely heavily on donations and the generosity of the services clubs that have been supporting us, and the residents and families who see the value in contributing to an organization like ours so it can pay it forward to those who are less fortunate.”

She appreciated the municipal support.

“Ultimately at the end of the day we’re doing our part in adding to the quality of life for residents who live in our community,” Morey said.

Red Deer will also put forward a resolution urging the province to fund 211 services to all Albertans. The city originally sponsored the resolution three years ago and it was set to expire.

“We haven’t seen that implemented into action yet so we did want to renew that resolution,” Veer said.

Another resolution will urge the province to create a provincial commission to sanction combative sports in Alberta.

szielinski@reddeeradvocate.com

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