There’s no place like home – just ask the folks at Multiworks Corp. in Meadow Lake.

On Monday (June 6), Meadow Lake MLA and trade and export minister Jeremy Harrison – on behalf of minister of social services Gene Makowsky – joined community members, dignitaries and residents in Meadow Lake to celebrate the grand opening of a new Multiworks Vocational Training Corporation group home. 

Multiworks is a community-based organization that has provided residential, vocational and recreational supports and services to people with intellectual disabilities in the Meadow Lake area since 1978. The Government of Saskatchewan provided $101,000 in capital funding to support the development of the four-space group home. In addition, $321,271 is provided annually for the operating costs of the home.  

“This new group home is another step in our government’s support of person-centred community living,” Harrison said. “Our community partners, like Multiworks, are essential in creating inclusive and accessible communities in our province.” 

According to Multiworks executive director Dave Thickett, the organization is very appreciative of the support it receives from the Province of Saskatchewan, as well as the communities of Meadow Lake and Flying Dust First Nation.

“Multiworks is delighted to be able to provide the support to individuals who need it and that partnerships such as this provide it,” Thickett said. “This allows people to remain in their community and enjoy all the important family and friend relationships that are an integral part of having a quality life. We are fortunate to be a part of their lives and have the opportunity to be a part of their extended family.” 

Also excited about the new home is Jesse Ramshaw, Multiworks’ associate director of residential and behavioural supports.

“Having this new group home means we’re able to better support the four individuals who are moving in because now they have their own space that meets their current needs,” Ramshaw said. “They have a place to call home, a place that’s their own. The group home is located close the mall, Lions Park and right across from Jonas Samson Middle School. They’re right in the middle of the action happening in the city.”

Ramshaw also stated one of his favourite moments in this whole process was being able to show the residents their new home for the first time.

“I watched them as they were choosing bedrooms and pointing out where the kitchen table would go, where the furniture would sit and so on,” he said. “In short, making it their home. The four ladies who moved into the group home were already clients at Multiworks, but their individual needs had changed over time and consequently so had the needs of their living arrangements. We believe this new group home has met those various needs. We’re proud of the partnerships that have been formed to this point, and look forward to the continued work we will see in the future. As always, we thank the community of Meadow Lake and surrounding areas for being an inclusive environment for persons with intellectual disabilities. While ‘home’ is certainly a building, it is also our community at large.”

This new group home, located at 802-B 7th Ave. West, supports the Saskatchewan Disability Strategy by creating more residential services for people with intellectual disabilities. Communities that have done work that aligns with the Disability Strategy are encouraged to share their accomplishments using the hashtag #SKDisability. 

by Phil Ambroziak