10 years of Caring

Women get a special day at NorWest Co-op Community Health.

The 10th anniversary of the Women’s Day of Caring at NorWest Co-op Community Health’s resource centre on Alexander Ave. was hosted by the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) on Tuesday.

SuperFUNtasticEvent provided photos to each of the ladies with their fresh cuts.

SuperFUNtasticEvent provided photos to each of the ladies with their fresh cuts.

Almost 50 smiling women socialized and enjoyed free haircuts, manicures, and lunch at the United Way agency partner. They chose from clothing, shoes, and books, and came away with gift bags of jewelry, toiletries and cosmetics.

Students from Scientific Marvel Beauty School volunteered their skills.

Students from Scientific Marvel Beauty School volunteered their skills.

“It’s really great to give them a day where they’re pampered and have someone take care of them,” said NorWest Community Development Coordinator Elizabete Halprin.

Some of the women live isolated lives, Elizabete said. They may be alone or single parents living on a low income, or going through issues stemming from abuse or trauma.

Yvonne Clements thinks she may have missed just one Women’s Day of Caring in 10 years.

Yvonne Clements says the Day of Caring is a chance for women to connect.

Yvonne Clements says the Day of Caring is a chance for women to connect.

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world,” said Yvonne, tucking into a sandwich and veggies after her haircut.

“It’s time for women to be pampered. They might not have had their hair done for years, seriously, and it’s a chance to get new clothes for free.”

Yvonne said residents in her Blake Gardens housing complex “don’t really socialize, so this is a chance to get to know each other.”

“This is the one big social event.”

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As in past years, Scientific Marvel Beauty School students – 19 of them – were on hand to provide the free haircuts and manicures.

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Scientific Marvel Esthetics Instructor Romona Boeve said the day is about more than “making someone pretty.”

“It’s a connection. You’re making a connection with a person and talking to them.”

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Jan Morowski of the WRHA, which had seven volunteers helping out, said making personal connections is a wonderful part of the event.

“They connect through this as neighbours and become friends.”

WRHA provided clothing and shoes through an employee drive – enough for each woman to leave with multiple bags full.

The ladies got to choose a new book provided by Frontier College, which also provided children’s books for the prize baskets.

All the women took home gift bags, and 15 lucky winners also got prize baskets.

All the women took home gift bags, and 15 lucky winners also got prize baskets.

“We support United Way and Day of Caring,” said Frontier College Community Coordinator Karen Ste. Marie.

“Literacy happens at every level. There’s always an opportunity to learn, and women who use NorWest can be lifelong learners, right?”

France Croteau picked out a book that resonated with her.

France Croteau picked out a book that resonated with her.

France Croteau passed on the fiction for Flat Out Rock – Ten Great Bands of the 60s. She said she attended Woodstock in 1974 as an 11-year-old girl and remembers “dancing with my mum and dad.”

Learn more about United Way Days of Caring online or contact Day of Caring manager Hillary at 204-924-4273 or hgair@unitedwaywinnipeg.mb.ca.

9-day-old Annabelle was not interested in a manicure. Maybe next year!

9-day-old Annabelle was not interested in a manicure. Maybe next year!

Peg shows impact of poverty in Winnipeg

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A new Peg report shows poverty triples the chances of dying in Winnipeg before 75, while the life-expectancy gap between highest and lowest incomes is almost 20 years.

The report – Our City: A Peg Report on Health Equity – is highlighted and linked to from Peg’s  Facebook page and Twitter account.

It shines a light on 11 indicators that show gaps in health based upon income and other social circumstance existing in 12 Winnipeg community areas and 25 neighbourhood clusters. In the lowest income cluster area in Point Douglas the life-expectancy gaps for men and women are 18 and 19 years respectively in comparison to higher-income areas.

An overview of the report indicator information shows gaps related to health, and change trends, between the highest and lowest income areas in Winnipeg.

An overview of the report indicator information shows gaps related to health, and change trends, between the highest and lowest income areas in Winnipeg.

“Disadvantage profoundly limits opportunities to be healthy. This is about much more than individual health choices,” said Dr. Sande Harlos, Medical Officer of Health with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority, in a news release.

Life-expectancy gaps of 18 years for men and 19 years for women exist between the high and low income levels among 25 neighbourhood clusters.

Life-expectancy gaps of 18 years for men and 19 years for women exist between the high and low income levels among 25 neighbourhood clusters.

The report, echoing the experiences of those working in health and social services, highlights that addressing these gaps will require the involvement of all aspects of our community – including business, government, non-profits, and other groups.

“It is concerning to see such significant health inequity in our city – and in some cases, to see inequity growing. By working together, we can change this picture”, said Connie Walker, President and CEO of United Way Winnipeg.

“Peg clearly continues to be a crucial tool for Winnipeggers to understand some of the inequities that exist in our city,” said Scott Vaughan, President and CEO of the International Institute for Sustainable Development. “These sobering findings are an urgent call for collaborative action.”

The report, Our City: A Peg Report on Health Equity, was developed in partnership with the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority.

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Peg, an accessible and interactive community indicator system that measures the health of our communities year after year, can be found online at mypeg.ca.