The City of Regina is spending two months this fall upgrading equipment at five playgrounds.
The park sites are Hansen Drive Park, Assiniboine, Brinkworth, Rothwell and Gocki. All will receive new equipment that will meet current safety standards from the Canadian Standards Association. Rothwell Park will also be getting additional improvements, such as more pathways, improved irrigation and renovated tree and shrub beds.
Work at each site should last approximately three days. Anyone wanting more information can visit regina.ca or call 777-7000.
The province and the Prince Albert Parkland Regional Health Authority are developing a new Family Treatment Centre that will provide families, especially single mothers, access to treatment for substance abuse and, at the same time, a safe environment for children.
The health authority made the announcement on Aug. 22. Currently, there are no family-focused in-patient facilities of this kind in the province or across Canada. It is expected most patients will stay between six and eight weeks. The new facility will also accommodate a separate 10-bed child and youth mental health inpatient unit.
The centre will be located at the former site of Crean Villa, which was one of two mental health in-patient units located next to Victoria Hospital. It is expected to be operational in 2012.
Children’s Advocate Bob Pringle has given mixed reviews to the provincial government’s actions to reform the child welfare system.
In a story that received media attention in Saskatchewan as well as nationally, he said there has been progress in reducing the number of children living in overcrowded foster homes.
However, he added that too many are still at-risk, with 28.8 per cent living in homes with more than four children, based on numbers from the end of 2010. This exceeds the present capacity guidelines.
Human Resources Minister Diane Finley was planning a celebration of the Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB) in Ottawa on Aug. 10, but was met by protestors not in a festive mood, according to the online news site, Canoe.ca.
She was marking the fifth anniversary of the Conservatives’ move to send families with children younger than six $100 a month to spend as they choose. The government created the benefit as an alternative to the Liberals’ $5 billion universal child care plan, which was scrapped.
The Prairie North Health Region has been going mobile this summer. PNHR public health nurses from the Battlefords have been travelling throughout the community in an immunization van since early July.
Parents can bring their children into the mobile clinic for shots against diseases such as tetanus, whooping cough (pertussis), measles, mumps, chickenpox and meningitis.
The van will be in designated neighbourhoods from 10 a.m. until approximately 4 p.m. It will travel around the area, depending on how busy the clinic is in a location.
The question of how to make young people more physically active is the focus of a recent article in the Globe & Mail.
The story by Tralee Pearce picks up on a Canadian Institute for Health Information report released in June that found young people, outside their school time, are spending six to seven hours a day in front of computer and TV screens.
The Lloydminster Hospital is upgrading its maternity unit, says a recent story in the Lloydminster Meridian Booster.
The city’s Walmart Supercentre made a $25,000 donation, announced on June 17, to help with the project. The money will be used to renovate and upgrade the patient and family lounge for the maternity ward. The upgrades and additions include new flooring, paint and window treatments, the purchase of new furniture, a TV and DVD player, and a play area for children. A courtyard outside the second-floor lounge will also see renovations.
A Ministry of Education initiative to promote literacy in northern Saskatchewan communities meant some families were able to bring home a stash of new books, the StarPhoenix reports.
Advocacy groups are speaking out against the federal budget for not doing enough for children and families, according to the Child Care Resource and Research Unit (CRRU) website.
The CRRU has gathered responses from child care, social policy, and labour groups outlining their positions on the budget.
For example, Code Blue for Child Care said there is a large gap between the needs of young working mothers and their access to quality, not-for-profit child care.
The Federation of Saskatchewan Indian Nations (FSIN) has called for First Nations and Métis to have eventual control over child welfare and family service for their communities.
FSIN vice-chief Lyle Whitefish told the StarPhoenix the federation is establishing a framework with existing family services agencies to talk with the federal and provincial governments about assuming responsibility for children and family services in their communities.