Recent History – 2004 and beyond
By Cary Dufour, January 11, 2006
The plans are ready, and the site has been selected. Now all the Dawson Creek Society for Community Living needs is to complete the fundraising in order to begin construction of a building to replace the Opportunity Centre as a home for some of the Society’s programs.
“We have a design for the building… we have a lot picked out,” said DCSCL executive director Patrick Michiel. “We’re at the preliminary stages of the development happening. We’re waiting for funding support.”
Michiel said he is counting on some provincial funding for the project to help get it done in 2006. The Society began a fundraising project last year, shortly after the Opportunity Centre (which was located on 17th Street) was closed due to structural problems. Programs were amalgamated into the administration building on 102 Avenue.
“We’d like to finish it this year,” Michiel said. The building will be approximately 2,500 square feet – not as large as the old building – but designed specifically to fill the needs of the Society and the self-advocates. The chosen lot is located directly behind the current administration office on 102 Avenue.
“We already own the lot,” said Michiel, which minimizes some of the needed funding. The money gained from the sale of the old building has also been slotted for the building of the new facility. The new centre will be used for “educational, communication, and social training, as well as recreation. It will be a drop-in centre and house the day program,” said Marla Yaremcio, director of human resources.
The activity sessions are developed through many avenues, includingself-advocate, staff and public suggestions. Visitors come to Dawson Creek from Chetwynd and Fort St. John to participate in activities such as dances, and lessons in fire extinguisher use or First Aid.