This month, we will give you our usual updates but we want, and need, your opinions. Please read on!  

Nurse Practitioner:  We can take about 50 more names for the “I want to be on the potential NP patient list” but would advise you to contact us soon, either by email or through the website, to sign up. If you are already on the list, please make sure that the contact information is current.  

Now – we are asking for your opinion: As you know, visits for Primary Health Care are covered under the Canada Health Act.  BUT there are costs associated with this, like advertising costs to attract Nurse Practitioner applicants, purchasing exam room furniture, equipment and consumables, and a computer system, and undertaking extensive construction work to create 3 exam rooms.  Over 20 generous members of the Victoria Health Co-op have made donations and loans, however we still need additional resources, including both funds and volunteer time.  Please think about how you can help.  Can you volunteer for four hours a month?  Or provide snacks for meetings? Donate $50 a month?  Make a major donation before the end of the tax year? Cover the cost of an exam table or set of exam instruments?  Any further suggestions can you make? We need all brains for this! Thank you for your support. 

Integrative Wellness Services:  A very dedicated group of Wellness Practitioners offers treatments by donation once a month at the James Bay Community Project, contributing to the Health Access Fund donations to cover costs when a patient needs several follow-up treatments.  There is interest from several other practitioners to offer somewhat different services in the Cook St Village area, focusing on patients who need integrative attention from several different practitioners. If you are a practitioner, would you be interested in this collaborative opportunity?  Would you offer a service? What should be the fee for a group consultation then a series of six treatments, affordable but enough for the practitioners to be properly reimbursed for their time and skill?

Simple “Choices” Wellness Groups:  For several years we facilitated Choices For a Health Lifestyle and Hans Kai groups.  Choices is a series of meetings (always with a delicious snack) focusing on topics such as Choices for Health Nutrition Even If You Are on a Tight Budget, Choices for Entertainment Even If You Are on a Tight Budget, Choices for Safe Travel in Your Community Even If You no Longer Drive, Choices for Healthy Exercise Even If You Are a Bit Creaky.  Would you be interested in this?  Would you help to facilitate or fundraise?  Should there be a fee to join this type of group?  How much? If not, how will we cover the costs?

Hans Kai Wellness Groups:  This is a more in-depth program with a fascinating history, meeting regularly as a Learning Group (in Japanese, Hans means Group, Kai means Learning) for simple exercise, a snack, a health topic, measuring blood pressure and waist girth, socializing.  Would you be interested in this?  Would you help to facilitate or fund raise?  Should there be a fee for this type of group?  How much? If not, how will we cover the costs?

Annual General Meeting:  This will take place in February or March.  We need good representation from Vic Health Co-op members to make some important decisions.  Are you a member-owner? If not, will you join? Would you prefer the meeting (usually about 2 hours) on a weekday evening, Saturday morning or Saturday afternoon?  Do you have any preferred or impossible days? Would you help with phoning our member-owners to inform them of the date and remind them how important it is to attend?  Would you sponsor some advance media? Would you help to organize? Your help is greatly appreciated!

Health and Housing: The World Health Organization states that housing is a health priority.  I represent the Vic Health Co-op on the City’s Renters Advisory Committee.  I also had the opportunity to meet with experts in health and housing in Donegal, Sligo, Belfast and Newcastle.  Would you be interested in a discussion of the various approaches I learned about? How can I best share this information?

And a reminder: if you contribute through the Creating Community Wellness Society we are happy to provide a Charitable Donation receipt.  The CCWS number Canada Revenue is 833835457 RR0001.

Please share you ideas, questions, contributions and discussion about co-operatives in general through  or  or just call me at 240.415.9272.  

Vanessa Hammond, Chair, Victoria Health Co-operative

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