Dragonfly Centre opens up for children healing from trauma

By Josh Hall (Twitter: @Vancan19)
September 14, 2018 - 1:43pm

A new centre to assist children with healing from unimaginable traumas has opened its doors in south Red Deer.

The Dragonfly Children’s Healing Centre will be operated by The Outreach Centre and is right next door at 5301-43 Avenue.

Partners and other community members came together on Friday to unveil the entrance, offer tours and commemorate the facility’s opening.

“There’s going to be play therapy and therapeutic support groups occurring. It’s for kids who have trauma from domestic violence, homelessness and suicide,” said Barb Barber, Executive Director for Women’s Outreach. “So [we’ll be] helping them work through the trauma they’re experiencing and developing and creating some very healthy strategies and coping skills.”

Speaking to the crowd at the event, Barber referenced her ‘little dragonfly.’

“We did have a staff member who is no longer with us that did go through some very serious childhood trauma and we do think that if there was help for her back then, her path in life might have been different,” Barber said. “She’s been my little dragonfly that’s carried this project.”

Red Deer Mayor Tara Veer also applauded the efforts of all partners, adding that Red Deer is well respected as a community of generosity.

“The dragonfly symbolizes transformation and we only need to read our local media or social media to realize that our community needs transformation in so many critical areas,” Veer said. “We’re so proud of The Women’s Outreach for what you’re doing to make this transformation possible.”

The Dragonfly Centre will have working relationships with various local agencies like the RCMP, Central Alberta Child Advocacy Centre, and Central Alberta Sexual Assault Support Centre.

Alair Homes, who did the renovations at the facility, also announced at Friday's unveiling that the various partners, through cash and in-kind donations, had offset the cost of construction by $102,000.

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