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The Deadline for the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre Dream Home lottery is Sunday

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The Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre Dream Home Lottery ticket deadline is Sunday, April 7.  Please take a moment to see and share these reasons for supporting our most vulnerable kids.  Most importantly.. click on this link to visit the lottery website.


10 Children Supported in one week.  In this week alone, we have seen & supported 10 kids here at the Centre.
These children have been impacted by child abuse in some capacity: sexual abuse, physical, neglect, witness to domestic violence, sexual exploitation and emotional abuse.

 

 

 


9 Quilting Groups who make it possible to give our littles the comfort of their very own quilt.

When a child first visits our Centre they are often afraid, confused, and sad. After the interview, or other support they receive, it is incredible to witness the change in them. They stand a little taller, and leave knowing that today is the start of their healthy future.

Thanks to some amazing groups of ladies we are also fortunate enough to give a child a quilt afterwards, wrapping themselves with the comfort knowing it is going to be ok. These ladies stop by every couple months to bring us these hand-made pieces which takes many many hours, days and weeks to make.

 


8 New Communities Supported this Month.

In the month of March, we have supported children and their families impacted by child abuse from 8 new communities throughout Central Alberta.
Since opening, we have served 61 communities.
Although we are located in Red Deer, we support more than half of our cases from surrounding communities: Sylvan Lake, Alix, Lacombe, Bashaw – your community.

 

 

 

7 Core Staff at the CACAC

The CACAC is comprised of a group driven by courage to end the cycle of abuse. What many do not know is that we are a small team, only made up of 7 core staff just as of this month!

We wouldn’t be able to do this alone though, it is through our collaboration with our 7 partners that makes it possible: RCMP, Central Region Children’s Services, AHS, Alberta Education, Alberta Justice, Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre, and RDC.

It is also through YOU that we are able to support the children of Central Alberta. We rely on the support and advocacy of the community and we need your help.

To support the CACAC and the vulnerable children of Central Alberta, please buy your Dream Home Lottery ticket before it’s too late. All proceeds go directly to supporting children and their families impacted by child abuse.

 


6 Years since Bill 25: The Children First Act – Alberta Children’s Charter was enacted.

#DidYouKnow: The Children First Act was passed 6 years ago here in Alberta, allowing pertinent information to be shared among service providers – if deemed beneficial to the child or for the provision of services.

This is what allows all of our partners to work together at ‘triage’. They are able to share important case information which expedites the process – and in-turn propels healing & recovery for the child.

Although this act allows for government agencies to collaborate and work together here at the CACAC, we still rely on the community for the majority of funding.

 

5 Operating Child Advocacy Centres in Alberta

We are proud to be apart of the 5 open & operating CACs in Alberta – operating for a full 16 months! Other CACs in Alberta include: Zebra Child Protection Centre Calgary & Area Child Advocacy Centre Lloydminster Sexual Assault Services Caribou Child & Youth Centre .

All of these Centres collaborate on best practices & support one another in order to best support the children of Alberta affected by Child Abuse.

 

 

4 X more likely for child abuse survivors to report self-harm or suicidal ideations.

This staggering statistic is another reason why support throughout and after the initial process is so crucial. For the survivor, it doesn’t just end at the potential court hearing, or even at the forensic interview – healing is a life-long journey.

Through our partnership with Alberta Health Services, we now have our Mental Health Therapist here onsite at the CACAC – providing the much needed support and therapy for both the child and their family to end the cycle of abuse.

 

 

3 | 1 in 3 Canadians report to have experienced some form of child abuse in their youth.

We have shared this stat with you before, but let it sink in. In Canada, 33% of our population has been affected by child abuse.
This is someone you most likely know and would never expect. This is someone that is homeless struggling with addiction because they have no other way to cope and didn’t receive the crucial support. This may be your neighbor, your cousin, your best friend, your niece.

Many times, the story is not shared or reported until a much older age where the survivor has been struggling internally for years.

Help support the 1 in 3 Canadians that are survivors of abuse.

 

2 or more partners have collaborated on 87% of cases

Out of the 483 (as of March 27) children we have supported, 87% of the cases were through collaborative efforts between 2 or more of our service partners. We work with Alberta Health Services, Central Region Children’s Services, Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre, and the RCMP.

Through this collaboration, more information is shared – reducing the time for a child to receive proper support.

Your Dream Home Ticket helps support these collaborative measures in-turn, supports the 483 seen at the Centre and the many more we will support.

For $35 you can influence positive outcomes in the lives of abused children living in Central Alberta communities.

1 Ticket can change the life of a child

Your $35 ticket doesn’t just give you the chance to win an amazing house, cars or other prizes – it changes the life of the children that we support at the Centre.

All of the proceeds from the Dream Home Lottery support the most vulnerable children of Central Alberta – those impacted by child abuse. This abuse ranges from physical, to sexual, to being a witness of domestic violence, peer-to-peer abuse and unfortunately much more.

Your $35 is a donation and helps give back the promise and possibility of a healthy future to those that need it most.

Please buy your ticket before its too late, and support the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre and our mission to end the cycle of child abuse.

Tickets:
www.cacaclottery.ca
1-833-475-4402
57 Larratt Close – open Sunday until 5pm.

 

The Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre is a not for profit organization rooted in the protection and recovery of today’s most innocent and vulnerable – our children. The Centre is comprised of a collective that is driven by the courage to support children, youth, and their families affected by abuse, enabling them to build enduring strength and overcome adversity. We work in a collaborative partnership with the Central Region Children's Services, Alberta Health Services, Alberta Justice, Alberta Education, the Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre and the RCMP. Together we harness our collective courage to provide children with supported recovery. It takes courage and bravery for a child to share their story of abuse, for families to bring their children forward, to believe, to listen without judgement, and to seek justice. Supporting the Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre today is an investment in the promise and possibility of a healthy future for our children and our community.

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Alberta

Alberta announces combined $187 million in addictions and homelessness funding

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By Rob Drinkwater in Edmonton

The Alberta government has announced more than $124 million over two years for addiction and mental health services in Edmonton and Calgary, with another $63 million aimed at reducing homelessness in the province over the same period.

The funding for Edmonton and Calgary will go toward increasing treatment spaces while expanding addiction services, with $70 million earmarked for capital spending and $54 million to assist operations.

A 75-bed, co-ed long-term treatment facility is planned to be operational in Edmonton by the end of 2023, while a similar facility is to be built in Calgary by early 2024.

The $63 million is to support steps outlined in the government’s action plan on homelessness.

Premier Jason Kenney stressed his government’s recovery-based approach to the addictions issue when he announced the funding Saturday, calling British Columbia’s recent move to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of hard drugs in January “reckless.”

“In the area of addressing addictions, there are many that believe recovery is a false hope. It’s not possible, and instead what we should do is actually to facilitate dangerous addictions rather than to offer an off-ramp to freedom from addiction,” Kenney said during the announcement at Edmonton’s Herb Jamieson Centre.

“The whole point is to give people a fighting chance to escape from the grips of addiction so they have the opportunity to build a new, safe fulfilling life.

“Recovery works. It’s not a new concept or an untested Utopian theory,” he said.

Under the Alberta plan, the number of winter shelter spaces will be expanded in communities like Edmonton, Wetaskiwin and Lethbridge, and in rural communities where there is an urgent and unmet need.

All provincially funded shelters will also provide round-the-clock access seven days a week, while funding will be equalized between community-based organizations in Edmonton and Calgary.

The funding will include $5 million to create up to 450 additional shelter spots in Edmonton, bringing the number of emergency spaces in the city to over 1,000.

The plan also includes $2.5 million in 2022-2023 to test the so-called service hub model in two pilot programs in Calgary and Edmonton. These six-month long programs will connect people directly with support and services such as addictions recovery, housing and emergency financial support, beginning this fall.

Meanwhile, the addictions funding will be used to increase the ability of direct outreach teams through Edmonton police and Alberta Health Services to provide support and overdose prevention services. The same expansion of services will also be carried out in Calgary.

Edmonton police chief Dale McFee lauded the fact that housing options include support for mental health and addictions as he personally thanked Kenney for the new funding.

“This is the biggest single investment that I’ve ever seen over the course of my career in actually addressing the system versus putting more money into silos that are actually generating a lot of the problem,” McFee said at the announcement.

Edmonton Mayor Amarjeet Sohi said the funding would tackle the root causes of homelessness, and also praised the fact the province was delivering on a request to provide enhanced plans when prisoners are discharged from corrections facilities.

In July, the city requested a hub where social workers, firefighters and peace officers could work together to reduce crime and address a spike in violence downtown, in nearby Chinatown and and on the transit system.

“These investments show our collaborative approach is working, and together we are making life better for struggling Edmontonians,” Sohi said at the announcement.

But NDP Critic for Seniors and Housing Lori Sigurdson said in a news release that Kenney’s government has cut funding for housing, noting buildings that could have opened months ago are sitting empty because the government hasn’t provided operational funding.

“The money announced today does not even begin to address the deeper need for permanent supportive housing, social housing and affordable housing in this province,” she said.

According to the province, over 6,400 Albertans were experiencing homelessness— including nearly 4,000 using emergency shelters or on the streets — as of Jan. 31.

Alberta saw more than 1,600 opioid-related deaths in 2021.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 1, 2022.

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Alberta

Five years later: Waterton Lakes National Park plan considers fire recovery

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Waterton – Like the land itself, a new management plan for Waterton Lakes National Park is marked by a powerful wildfire that tore through the southern Alberta park five years ago.

The 2022 plan, tabled in Parliament this summer, sets the park’s direction for the next decade. It includes dealing with climate change and invasive species and considers ways to strengthen Indigenous relationships and connect with Canadians.

The Kenow Wildfire, however, led to a major change from the previous plan. The fire burned more than 19,000 hectares — approximately 39 per cent — of the mountainous park in September 2017 and damaged many popular picnic areas, campgrounds and hiking trails.

“We’ve been pretty fortunate,” Parks Canada’s Locke Marshall, who’s the superintendent in Waterton, said in a recent interview. “We’ve had a lot of support from the federal government.”

Marshall said some of the damaged infrastructure was already being replaced before the fire, but other areas required a complete rebuild.

“There’s been a lot of work that has been done,” he said. “Initially, when the fire went through, our parkways were not available, so we had to work on them to get them ready to go.

“We lost our visitor centre, but we were already in plans to build a new one. Many of our picnic areas got damaged. We’ve done a lot of work on our trails.”

Some areas, such as roads and bridges around Red Rock Canyon, are still being rebuilt and the Crandell Mountain campground is still under construction, he said.

Mike Flannigan, a professor of wildland fire at Thompson Rivers University in B.C. and Canada Wildfire’s scientific director, said the fire also affected a lot of the park’s natural landscape.

“It burned a good chunk of the park with high-intensity severity,” he said. “The effect on the vegetation and the soil was severe because it was hot and dry.”

Flannigan said he’s interested to learn more about how the ecosystem has recovered in the park in the five years since the fire.

“I’m hoping Waterton uses this as an educational opportunity to inform the public about fires and regeneration and biodiversity and wildlife,” he said, noting there can be positive changes.

Marshall said Parks Canada has learned a lot and will continue to learn from the wildfire through various research projects.

“This has probably been an opportunity that we really haven’t seen in the past — and that’s just to see what the effects of a widespread fire, a fairly intense fire, has on a landscape and how the landscape itself recovers from it,” he said. “And also how that recovery may be affected by changes to the climate that we’ve seen in the last several decades.

“So, it’s a really good opportunity for science.”

The research, he said, could take decades to complete. He noted there’s already some visible changes in the forests.

“There has been a bit of a transformation,” he said. “A lot of the forests were predominantly conifers — pine, spruce, Douglas fir. In some places … we’re seeing more aspen trees, shrubs and in some places … because of a drier, warmer climate, we may see areas that were once forested will be open meadows now.

“There’s definitely a change in the landscape.”

The plan notes the fire also revealed more than 70 new archeological sites and expanded 170 known sites in the area that burned.

“It was a really good opportunity for some of that archeological work to be done,” Marshall said.

“We’ve been able to involve our nearby Indigenous communities, in particular members of the Blackfoot Confederacy — the Kainai and Piikani — in looking at that landscape and seeing it in the context of their traditional knowledge of the use of the place.”

Marshall said they continue to work with the communities to document the sites, which the plan suggests will be complete by 2025.

Overall, he said, the new management plan shows the agency’s ongoing commitment to protecting the park.

“It deals with the fire,” said Marshall, “but it also deals with our day-to-day operations related to visitation and how we manage the ecological and cultural integrity of the place.”

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 1, 2022.

— By Colette Derworiz in Calgary. Follow @cderworiz on Twitter.

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