Wellness grants help combat COVID-19 blues


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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 09/02/2021 (843 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

The civic level of government can sometimes seem slow-moving and mired in red tape. However, we have an initiative this winter that was been developed quickly and is getting money out the door to assist with “mental, physical and spiritual wellness” during this depressing winter quarantine.

Coun. John Orlikow (River Heights-Fort Garry) created the Winnipeg Wellness grant program through which each ward councillor has $40,000 to spend this winter. Applications close Feb. 28, and the money must be spent by April 30.

This is a short-term program that City staff have jumped to implement.  

Supplied photo St. Vital city councillor Brian Mayes (left) and Dakota Collegiate phys-ed teacher Lindsay McLeod.

I have been pleased to announce several grants to date:

• The Louis Riel School Division is trying to do physical education outdoors throughout the winter. So I’ve contributed a grant of $4,000 each to enable Dakota Collegiate and Glenlawn Collegiate to buy wide-tire fat bikes. I have also approved $2,400 for J.H. Bruns to buy outdoor equipment and I’m working with École Sage Creek School to buy snowshoes;

• To boost spirits, I approved a grant of $4,000 to help out with the outdoor light display at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, leading up to the opening of Qaumajuq, its new Inuit art centre;

• A grant of  $2,500 for fireworks displays in Sage Creek on Feb. 14, and (we hope) another fireworks display in Bonavista in March;

• To assist with outdoor activities, a grant of $4,000 to Winnipeg Trails for various cross-country ski trails around the ward (St. Germain Park is high on the list), as well as $500 to help with rope handrails to access the skating trail on the Red River;

•  To help with parent/child issues, a $1,700 grant to Youville Centre to fund a “tween” program for parents and their children aged seven to 12.

By the end of February, I hope to have funded additional projects throughout the ward.

The pandemic has affected all Winnipeggers, but thanks to Councillor Orlikow’s inventive thinking, every city ward has some additional resources to help fight off the winter blues. 

Brian Mayes

Brian Mayes
St. Vital ward report

Brian Mayes is the city councillor for St. Vital.

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