By GILLIAN SLADE on August 8, 2020.
Bridges Family Programs in Medicine Hat has negotiated a new three-year contract with the provincial government to continue providing programs in the community.
“We’re thrilled to be the Hub for Medicine Hat, Cypress Country, Oyen and surrounding areas through the Family Resource Network through Children’s Services,” said Caitlin Hok, program manager and acting executive director for Bridges.
Some months ago there was an upheaval and uncertainty regarding funding.
Hok says some of the programs that Parent Link ran were also provided by Bridges. Under the new government contract not all of the programs will continue.
There is a walk-in service for families with children from newborn to 18 years of age, said Hok. They help navigate and provide immediate assistance and direction.
She says some families need more in depth and ongoing support and Bridges either provides this or directs them to those who can.
Bridges also provide parent education with classes to strengthen parenting skills. One of the programs focuses on helping fathers to be more nurturing and there are strategies for grandparents who are filling the role of a parent.
The organization also offers in-home support programs to develop healthy relationships by increasing communication and learning coping strategies.
There is a Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder assessment and support program including help on how to get a diagnosis.
The First Steps program is a parent-child assistance program for women who are pregnant or have children 12 months or younger and have used alcohol and/or drugs during pregnancy.
Bridges Family Programs is located at 477 Third St. SE. downtown and can be reached by phone at 403-526-7473.
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