The first children’s healing centre in a women’s shelter in Canada officially opened its doors in Red Deer Friday.
The new healing centre at the Central Alberta Women’s Shelter will help children process through the hardships they have endured.
“This is a very exciting day for us here,” said Ian Wheeliker, executive director of the Central Alberta Women’s Shelter. “It has been a vision and dream that has come to reality.”
The centre is located in the lower level of the current shelter.
Incorporated into the new healing centre is the Snoezelen room.
“Snoezelen is a relaxing therapeutic room for children who have high anxiety and high stress,” said Wheeliker. “We’re going to create a brighter space and we’re going to create a space where children are engaged in play.”
The room also includes a 3D non-violent pirate ship, a 3D teepee reading room, a relaxation space that available for moms to use to curl up with their children in front of a fireplace.
“We will also continue on our rhythm and drumming,” said Wheeliker. “Rhythmic rocking and rhythmic beat helps to relax humans and we’ve probably know this for thousands and thousands of years because moms have been rocking their babies for thousands of years.
“We are creating a warm, inviting and relaxing space.”
The healing centre also includes a teen room.
The teen room inclues lap tops, access to Skype, MSN Messenger and facebook as well as non-violent video games and television.
“Teens can also connect with their teachers to keep up on their schooling,” said Wheeliker.
The cost of the project is about $400,000.