Alba Ramirez and son proudly accept the 10,000th visitor honour at the hub. - Contributed

Kelowna Family Hub celebrates 10,000th visit

The Central Okanagan Family Hub opened in 2016

The Central Okanagan Family Hub is celebrating its 10,000th visit and inviting you to celebrate. Through a truly community-based collaborative approach, the Family Hub opened in June 2016 at Pearson Road Elementary School, with the support of United Way CSO, School District No. 23 and the Ministry of Children and Family Development – Early Years Services.

This one-stop shop model brings community agencies and their resources together to partner on important holistic services that see our community changing lives for the better. Every day the Family Hub sees families accessing medical and dental care, early years assessments, referrals for child developmental supports, participating in early literacy programs, engaging in play with their children, participating in parent groups, and much more, according to the hub’s news release.

The 10,000th visitor was Alba, a regular at the Family Hub. Alba recently moved to Kelowna from Mexico with her husband and two boys aged 2 and 9. While her husband goes to work to support the family, Alba is left alone to raise their boys. This often makes her feel very lonely and isolated. English is not her first language, the community and culture are all new and she knows no one here. Alba found the Family Hub at Pearson Road Elementary School and everything changed for her, the release said.

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“I was received like family,” she said. “The staff are polite and take care of everyone. I feel comfortable all the time.” Alba enjoys the hub so much that she attends with her two-year-old to play and socialize 4-5 times per week. She has been referred to other programs to meet her family’s needs by hub staff such as Sponsor a Family and Care Dental for free dental work for her children.

The Family Hub also has a Parent Learning Room, where Kelowna’s child or family-related organizations can run free events or courses. All Family Hub services are free of charge. Regular programs include the well-attended Parent-Child Mother Goose Program, Peetigway, the Breastfeeding Café, The Best of Me, Sunshine Play Group, and Nobody’s Perfect Parenting Program.

The Family Hub is leading the way in collaborating with service providers who facilitate vital services for young families. The Family Hub model provides a safe environment for families to obtain support and community referrals. The Hub leadership team continues to build partnerships and is working hard to secure long-term funding which will ensure these vital services continue within our community, the release said.

To get involved by donating or providing financial support for the Hub for 2019 and beyond go to www.unitedwaycso.com/donate and request for the support of the hub.

A celebration of the 10,000th visit will be held at the Family Hub, Pearson Road Elementary School on Dec. 19 at 9 a.m.


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