Community Health Team staff "willing to listen, willing to help"

Wednesday, December 4, 2013 - 10:52am

Watch Samantha and Angelina's video to see how the Dartmouth Community Health Team helped Samantha and her daughter Angelina and read their story below.

Samantha was struggling. She felt alone and a bit overwhelmed, and found herself struggling to raise her daughter Angelina.

Then the Community Health Team opened in Dartmouth and Samantha gave them a call. She met with a wellness navigator, Heather, at a community space close to where Samantha and Angelina live. Heather explained all the resources that were available to Samantha and Angelina through the Community Health Team and community partners. Samantha started working with these resources immediately. Heather put her in touch with programs run by the Community Health Team as well as through Mental Health Services at Capital Health. Samantha said that the self esteem course helped her a lot and gave her the confidence to seek out more resources for her and Angelina.

Monique, from the IWK Health Centre and a staff member of the Community Health Team, got Samantha and Angelina into the IWK’s Cool Kids program for children with anxiety. Samantha recalls Monique making them feel comfortable and allowing them to talk about the things they needed to talk about. Samantha and Angelina have seen improvements in themselves and in each other.

Samantha says that approaching the Community Health Team was much easier than accessing care through hospitals. Hospitals are too busy, she says, for them to be able to take the time to sit down and really talk to you. The Community Health Teams have the time and really use it to help. “Heather listened, Monique listened and that has made a huge difference for both of us,” Samantha recalls.

Samantha has taken courses for physical activity, financial management, buying and cooking healthier food, mindfulness and stress reduction. For her and Angelina, the best part is that the courses are easily accessible in their community and they’re free.

The team is making a difference in Samantha’s and Angelina’s lives. As Samantha affirms, “The Community Health Team has been part of making our family better, whole. It makes me feel better each day. I feel I have a chance. This is what the city needs, a place where you can go to help yourself.”

Community Health Teams are located in Dartmouth and Spryfield, and serve residents who live, work or have a family doctor in those areas. Visit Community Health Teams to learn more about their free wellness programs.