CAMPBELL RIVER, B.C.— Qwalayu House in Campbell River is celebrating nearly a year of providing a home to people accessing health care in the north Island region.
The home provides home away from home for pregnant women, and children who are ill in the area accessing care in Campbell River. The home features multiple spaces including kitchens, a living room and other spaces to create a welcoming centre for visitors.
Home manager Megan Armstrong says the biggest priority for guests is to keep them relaxed while waiting for healthcare services. She says over the year, they have seen many overwhelming experiences.
“I’ve had a few guests say that just knowing somebody’s here means the world to them,” said Armstrong. “Quite a few guests have been gushing with ‘I can’t believe this is here, this is so amazing’.”
The home’s aid has come to many residents over the last year. Armstrong says 46 babies were born to mothers who stayed at the home before the birth of their child.
Quadra Island resident Darcie Greenland says the house became an important aid with the birth of her daughter. As new residents, her family did not have a place to stay for the birth.
“We were starting to farm the land at our house and still moving in and doing boxes and stuff. We couldn’t really think of taking two weeks over in Campbell River, so we cut it down to a week, and we stayed at the house,” she said. “Ironically, our daughter ended up being a week late, so it was still two weeks.”
Greenland says the house allowed her husband to work and kept her from having to stay in a hotel. It also gave her two-year-old son a place to play and her mother a place to stay and visit the newborn.
Armstrong says the home is open for anyone who needs to access healthcare services in the area.
“Anybody that needs to come down to Campbell River to access healthcare services, whether it’s dental services, speech and language services, not just the hospital,” she said. “We have a home here for you that’s homelike, quiet, there’s no hustle and bustle and we’re just here to help take care of you.”
Radiothon will be at the Strathcona Regional Gardens Recreation Complex on June 23 from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.