Community & Culture

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Working for wellness

A cove is considered a safe harbour in a storm. “Bro’s Cove” in Cranbrook is no different. The men’s consignment store opened in September 2018 and is run by the Kootenay Initiative Program (KIP), one of Interior Health’s Community Mental Health Programs. It offers support and training for men with mental illness. “It isn’t just…

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End the stigma: Jill’s story

Jill is blond, fit and full of energy. She often wears her hair in a bouncy ponytail. But there is a sadness around Jill’s eyes that somehow conflicts with the spring in her step.  The Okanagan mother of two recently retired from a career as a renal nurse. She spends her days in the mountains,…

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Interior Voices invites you to pull up a chair

When Vanessa, Kris, Sheila, and Beth met as a working group for the first time, something just clicked. “We found that we worked really well together,” explains Aboriginal health lead Kris Murray. “We had great chemistry, we got a lot done, and there was a lot of laughter.” Each woman brought her unique lived experience…

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A community healing through art

Not all healing happens through health care. Sometimes what’s needed is more about healing the soul than the body. That’s what happened last year in Grand Forks, a community struggling to overcome the devastation caused by flooding in 2018. “The idea for the murals started out as part of an effort to bring back visitors…

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Kindness you can hear

In the aftermath of the 2017 terrorist attack in Manchester, United Kingdom, something unexpected happened. The community gathered to honour the dead with a spontaneous rendition of Don’t Look Back in Anger by the local band Oasis. When grief renders words inadequate, music can sometimes provide an outlet for the emotions associated with death and…

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Words matter: stigma hurts those left behind

Stigma. It’s a word used to describe shame and fear of judgment. It’s also the No. 1 barrier people with substance use disorders cite for not seeking help. And if you thought health-care providers are somehow immune and don’t carry prejudices, you would be wrong. Like most health-care workers, RN Shari Smith* has dedicated her…

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How adult day programs transform lives

At 66 years of age, Carolyn inspires those who know her. Born with cerebral palsy, Carolyn lived with her parents until their poor health made it necessary for them to move into a long-term care home three years ago. For the first time in her life, Carolyn needed to figure out the basics of living…

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Tower smudging close to the heart

For Helen Henderson, life is all about connections. As kukpi7 (chief) of the Canim Lake Band near 100 Mile House, she searches out connection to the land, to her band members and to her past. Earlier this year at Royal Inland Hospital (RIH) in Kamloops, several connections came together in one emotional ceremony for Helen,…

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