Wood's Homes Blog

When your well is empty: Empathy in the time of COVID-19

April 12, 2021

COVID-19 has impacted all people and every aspect of life. One of the significant impacts has been for people who have huge hearts, or deep wells of empathy. For many of us, we have felt that well running dry. People are having to dig a little deeper into their reserves in order to choose kindness. So what do you do when you find yourself quicker to be irritated, faster to fall into frustration, just generally annoyed more frequently than typical?

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Success of Wood’s Homes and Central Library pilot project leads to extension

March 30, 2021

Eastside Community Mental Health Services and Central Library in downtown Calgary began a pilot project last fall that offers library patrons immediate, no-charge, walk-in mental health and addictions support.

We are pleased to announce that this partnership has been extended to December 2021. 

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Mission Possible: Moving in-person counselling to a virtual world

March 26, 2021

A year ago, the therapy and crisis counselling teams at Eastside Community Mental Health Services (formerly Eastside Family Centre and the Community Resource Team) faced a daunting task. 

We were looking to create an immediate overhaul of a service delivery model that was 30 years in the making - because of something called COVID-19. 

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Stepping forward to help: Staff experiences from Wood's Homes Pandemic Team

March 11, 2021

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, social service organizations – such as Wood’s Homes – have been challenged to keep pace with ever-evolving public health policy and protocols, while also maintaining focus on the effective delivery of our mental health services.

Over the last year, Wood’s Homes has been shoulder-to-shoulder with other children’s mental health congregate care programs and has been faced with positive COVID-19 cases in our live-in programs. Faced with this challenge, senior leadership put out a call to all staff, looking for ‘trailblazers.’ These would be frontline workers who were prepared to join Wood’s Homes Pandemic Team – a team of employees who were able to commit to working (up to one month) in a program where there was a positive COVID-19 case.

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How I coped with being pregnant during the pandemic

March 03, 2021

I found out I was pregnant on July 27, 2020.

My husband, Dylan, and I had never been so excited – after 11 years together, we were finally taking the next step in our journey as a couple and becoming parents. At that time, it appeared as though the global COVID-19 pandemic was slowing down – active case numbers were low, provincial restrictions were lifted and life was pretty much the same as it was before the pandemic (aside from the face masks, of course). Yes, we knew that COVID-19 was still here and could potentially be around for many months to come; however, many of the fears and anxieties we had in the spring were slowly disappearing as we saw case numbers decline.

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The last people standing

February 24, 2021

If you remember the last entry in this series, I spoke about how using a substance is a negative maladaptive strategy to cope with trauma.  

Now that we’re in our second lockdown, many of us may be thinking about some of the things we’ve given up over the past year – hugging friends and family members, meeting a child born during the lockdown or celebrating the life of a loved one who passed away – and for some, it may be a long list.

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The expression of love is never lost

February 12, 2021

This blog post is result of a conversation had between Tye Rhyno, Indigenous Liaison at Wood’s Homes, and Elder John Crier from Maskwacis, Samson Cree Nation, around Valentine’s Day. It shares knowledge on self-love, love for your children, love for your partner and love for your community. We acknowledge the impact of colonization on Indigenous families and the loss of traditional teachings, and that finding new pathways requires access to knowledge, with the understanding that we can integrate new teachings at any point along our journey.

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Invincibility is not a trait that belongs solely to adolescents

February 10, 2021

To say I was blasé about the risks associated with COVID-19 is an overstatement; however, I can also say that I was not as rigorous about following the protocols as I could have been.

It is for this reason that I’m sharing my personal experience with COVID.

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Navigating and supporting the world of teen relationships

February 02, 2021

During a time when COVID (and all things related to COVID) seems to dominate our news feeds, it sometimes feels like a challenge to also have to deal with the uncertainties and often tumultuous world of raising adolescents. The increasing concern about adolescents’ mental health due to COVID’s increased social isolation and restrictions may make it feel that starting conversations around relationships and sexual health are not high on your agenda right now; however, we know that COVID is here to stay for a while longer and addressing the important developmental changes that occur during adolescence creates a healthy foundation for assisting our young people in navigating this new stage of their development.

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No one has time for Blue Monday

January 18, 2021

No one has time for Blue Monday. We don’t even know what day it is anymore.

Several years ago I wrote a blog debunking the myth of Blue Monday, but this year I could not help but think about how little importance specific days have become in the wake of COVID-19.  COVID birthdays and other special events have all taken on new (or less) meaning because they can’t be celebrated in the same way. I recently wrote a celebratory note to a friend who had achieved an important milestone, realizing “wish we could celebrate in person” could not be made more palatable by suggesting that we will somehow do it in the future. There is only so much you can put off before there is a sense of not wanting to bother.

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