The Mustard Seed’s new wellness centre will offer a number of programs and services to help the city’s most vulnerable.
On Wednesday, the Christian non-profit organization officially launched its wellness centre, which will offer enhanced clinical and non-clinical programs and services to Red Deerians experiencing homelessness and extreme poverty.
Some of those programs and services include medical doctor appointments and treatments, mental health and addictions counselling, wellness advocate services, and paramedical services, said Joshua Adams, The Mustard Seed manager of clinical operations and programs.
“We thought a couple of the big areas (people need help) are physical and mental health,” said Adams.
“Both are big issues for people who are homeless and people who struggle with poverty, and there a number of reasons for that. For example, one being a lack of finances and another being struggles with trust issues, in regards to their previous experience in the system.
“If we can bring it to them and continue to build those trusting relationships, we figured it’s a win for them, it’s a win for the community and is a win for the health care system. People don’t have to wait until their issues are extreme and they’re rushed to the ER.”
Adams said The Mustard Seed has been providing “basic services” for Red Deerians for the past few years, such as running its soup kitchen and offering a sober shelter in the basement of the building.
“The idea of the wellness centre is that we want to do more for the people that are struggling with poverty in our city, and the homeless as well,” said Adams.
Byron Bradley, managing director of central Alberta for The Mustard Seed, said the launch of the wellness centre marked a “big day” for the organization.
“We care for the whole person. We strive to be an organization that has integrated services that touch all parts of people’s lives. Health and wellness is such a big part of everybody’s life,” said Bradley.
Many have “a lot of anxiety” when they go to a walk-in clinic, Bradley said.
“One gentleman recently told me he hasn’t seen a doctor in over 20 years. This wellness centre is so significant for him and for all the people in the community,” he said, adding the clinic is for all ages.