Choose Cowichan Lake now about more than doctors

Overal health mandate: Community committee receives grant, changes its mission statement

Choose Lake Cowichan is no longer what it set out to be. It’s bigger.

Instead of simply existing in order to attract doctors to the community, the group now has as its priority the overall health of Cowichan Lake citizens.

Three factors have emerged to switch that focus.

The first is VIHA’s desire to create a primary health team for the lake area. The second is a community desire for the creation of a health care hub. Finally, there is access to provincial grant money.

Choose Cowichan Lake got word last week of a $4,500 grant from the Ministry of Health and the B.C. Healthy Communities Society, The grant will help pay for operational expenses, but it comes with several stipulations attached.

“Now we have to go about completing some of the exercises in the grant we applied for, like holding some community engagement sessions or community education sessions,” said Choose Cowichan Lake member Bob Day.

“Currently we are busy planning for the Sept. 5 multi-disciplinary meeting, which will be held at the seniors’ centre,” said Day. “It will be another session just like the one we had at the arena.”

But, unlike the last meeting, this one will be led mainly by the Choose Cowichan Lake Committee.

“VIHA decided that they will let Choose Cowichan Lake kind of run the show, but they will be there. It should be a more community-led event, which will be nice,” says Day.

Choose Cowichan Lake will also be launching a healthy activity in the future, but the committee has not gotten that far into planning.

“We are also going to do a road trip to a clinic in Sooke, which is touted by professionals as one of the best organized and most efficient at meeting the health care needs of small communities.”

If you wish to attend the next multi-disciplinary meeting, it will take place Thursday, Sept. 5 from 9 to 11 a.m. at the seniors’ centre.