Mat Program and food bank still open, other Friendship Ctr. programs going remote

Pearl Lorentzen
Lakeside Leader

As of March 19, the Slave Lake Mat Program and food bank were still open, says Slave Lake Native Friendship Centre Executive-Director Barb Courtorielle. The Slave Lake Friendship Centre has cancelled all other programs.

The Friendship Centre is working on ways to connect with people remotely.

There are challenges, says Courtorielle. Some of the elders who usually come to Friendship Centre programs, don’t have internet and some don’t have a phone.

As of March 20, the centre is calling the elders daily and delivering medicine or other needs to their doorstep.

The Friendship Centre is working to offer Community Helpers remotely. This is a suicide prevention program.

People interested in helping with the program in whatever form this takes during these uncertain times can contact Devin Bellerose at [email protected]

The food bank has been busy, and will likely become busier, says Courtorielle.

On March 20th, she posted on Facebook that the food bank was almost out of food.

She is finding it hard to find hand sanitizer and gloves for her employees and volunteers. The community can support the food bank financially. There are three options: drop off a cheque or cash at the front desk, mail a cheque, or at Sobeys put money onto the food bank’s charge account.

Don’t drop off food.

It is also not looking for any new in-person volunteers at this time.

Both the food bank and Mat Program have increased sanitation measures and have signs to remind people about hand washing.

In the future, the Mat Program will need a new home for the fall. While people who are not already volunteering cannot help in-person at the Mat Program, everyone in the community can be thinking of possible locations and solutions for next year.

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