A long-term solution to one Indigenous community’s mental wellness plight is in the works.
Following the northern youth crisis last October, leadership from the Lac La Ronge Indian Band (LLRIB) mentioned the possibility of a holistic Woodland Cree healing centre as a long-term solution.
Jane Philpott, the federal Minister of Health announced the government of Canada would provide the support the band needs to complete their business plan.
“One of the messages we heard loud and clear was this interest in a wellness centre here in La Ronge,” Philpott said. “We will be supporting this feasibility study initially with $200,000 that will support the development of the business plan.”
Philpott said she and her partners at Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada will work together to determine the next steps in the process.
The band is 90 per cent complete its business plan according to Chief Tammy Cook-Searson – the feasibility study is the last step LLRIB needs to complete in order to submit a proposal to the government.
Cook-Searson spoke on the importance of including the traditional ways with modern medicines.
“With this wellness centre we want to build… it’s something that we want to integrate the western therapies and also taking our Woodland Cree culture, our language,” Cook-Searson said. “Taking people back on the land, and at the same time respecting all the different spiritualties, spiritual beliefs people have.”
She said the wellness centre isn’t something just for the LLRIB; it’s a centre for “everyone in the North,” where people can heal.
On Twitter: @BryanEneas
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