I am honoured to serve as Chair of such an esteemed group of individuals, who are genuinely committed to the well-being of our community and to excellence in counselling. We take great pride in being a part of an organization that is carrying out such impactful work.
After a monumental 50th anniversary in 2012, Calgary Counselling Centre embarks on its next chapter, continuing its relentless focus on providing the best outcomes to its clients through effective counselling backed by extensive research, education and training. This dedication and focus continues to solidify the Centre's position as a leader in mental health in our community.
It was nothing short of inspiring to see Calgary Counselling Centre's response to the 2013 Southern Alberta floods. The collaboration, adaptability, and assistance provided by staff and volunteers went above and beyond. This is a true testament to the Centre's commitment to its clients and the community. The board is proud to stand behind an organization that impacts so many people and never loses sight of its mission and vision.
The Centre's ability to identify and swiftly respond to the needs of the community either during a time of crisis or through the creation of new counselling programs, continues to change the landscape of mental health in Calgary.
I speak on behalf of all the board members when I say it is a true honour and privilege to be part of this great organization. We invite you to join us in the conversation and learn more about the Centre as it continues its journey.
Our 50th anniversary celebration in 2013 inspired us. The outpouring support and appreciation we received further strengthened our sense of purpose and our commitment to our clients and community. Our focus remains on providing the greatest results for our clients. Through continued dedication to best practices in counselling and research, we can ensure our clients receive the best possible treatment based on solid, reliable evidence.
In June 2013, Calgary and surrounding area experienced some of the worst flooding to hit our community in history. A natural disaster not only takes a toll on the physical environment around us, but also the mental health of our community.
Collaboration and community played a large role in the restoration and recovery efforts during the flood. We had the opportunity to join local and national organizations, offering mental health knowledge and assistance to the community. Initially, we responded by providing counselling services via phone and Skype. When the need was determined, the Centre was invited to open a satellite counselling centre in High River to support the mental health needs of that community. I am excited to announce that the new High River Counselling Centre opened in early 2014.
The High River Counselling Centre will facilitate the timely delivery of counselling to a population in need. Further proof of our commitment to client focus.
Calgary Counselling Centre reached an all-time high in demand with an increase of 14 per cent in requests for counselling services in July following the flood. Throughout this time of crisis and despite the increase in demand we ensured our commitment of no waiting lists was maintained. Calgary Counselling Centre is here to assist with the mental health needs of our community that can arise out of any situation, no matter the scale or magnitude.
Calgary Counselling Centre is immensely grateful for our own community filled with compassionate donors, community partners, funders, volunteers, courageous clients, and highly dedicated staff. Thanks to you, Calgary Counselling Centre provided over 24,000 counselling and group sessions with over 45,000 people in 2013 which helped many individuals and families in need.
I am filled with pride when I look back at our 50 years of service in the community and the direction Calgary Counselling Centre is headed as we move forward and continue to meet the needs of our community.