Connected: Community connections at work

Committees bring members together to work towards shared goals.

(THE NEWS/files) MP Dan Ruimy will be the guest at the March 13 meeting of the Community Network.

Hello, from the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows-Katzie Community Network.

We are an active group of local organizations and individuals working together to create positive impact in our community.

The work of the Community Network covers the whole spectrum of social services, with members focusing on youth, seniors, parents, immigrants and more.

We are a one-stop shop to get connected with resources in the community.

Community Network members meet regularly to network, share information and identify emerging issues.

Our committees bring members together to work towards shared goals.

The Ridge Meadows Community Children’s Table provides services to improve the health and well-being of children.

Our Community Literacy Committee promotes and supports adult, community and family literacy.

Golden Ears Feast focuses on supporting access to affordable and nutritious food.

The opioid overdose response task group formed in 2016 to address the emerging opioid overdose crisis.

The task group brings together the City of Maple Ridge, Fraser Health, School District No. 42, Alouette Addictions, the Salvation Army Ridge Meadows Ministries, RainCity Housing and Ridge Meadows RCMP.

Each organization has its own focus, but all are mounting a response to this issue.

The task group also invites the participation of those with lived experience, as we know a variety of perspectives strengthens the effectiveness of this type of group.

The response task group is working collaboratively to decrease the number of overdoses, with a focus on reducing the stigma around opioid use.

This is a complex issue affecting the whole community. Trades people, soccer coaches and teenagers are suffering opioid overdoses.

The task group is using multiple strategies to share relevant facts. Members have hosted two fentanyl information sessions for parents and students. They have engaged the business community with a poster and fact sheet campaign.

The group’s “Photo Voice” project encourages individuals impacted by opioid use to tell their stories through photos. This visual art project will be shared with the community as an exhibition at the ACT Arts Centre Gallery in April.

The Community Network provides the structure for collaboration. Members leverage their partnerships to obtain increased opportunities and grants. We save time and money by ensuring that programming is targeted and relevant.

In the coming months, we’ll be sharing information on some of the many other projects the Community Network has on the go.

Connect with us on Facebook or via email at info@resourceyourcommunity.com. The Community Network meets on the second Tuesday of each month, 1-3 p.m. in the Fraser Room at the Maple Ridge library.

All are welcome to attend.

MP Dan Ruimy will be the guest at the March 13 meeting and will be sharing an update on his work in the community and in Ottawa.

Sunny Schiller is coordinator of the Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows-Katzie Community Network.

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