The Northumberland Community Counselling Centre would like to share a story with you. Actually, we’d love to share some of the compelling stories that we witness daily. Unfortunately, our guiding principles regarding privacy won’t allow for this, save anecdotal mention of the many types of challenges people face with their day-to-day.
It surprises us on a daily basis the number of people who are confronted with unfair life challenges. Seemingly innocuous life events rarely impact the community until they’re met with a personal connection. This insight of desperation presents itself regularly and with increasing frequency, especially as we age. For example, the survivor of a loved one wrestles with their responsibilities to immediate and extended family. Rarely, do they consider themselves as fragile, or the victim of this inevitable, natural life event. In fact, we often remark just how strong they are. How much love they show towards their spouse, their children, that extended family. Yet, this one natural incident is rarely predicted, never prepared for and certainly comes with varied degrees of debilitation. That stalwart individual we speak of, more often than not, requires professional intervention. This is one compelling example of why we are here.
The human condition can be loving, caring, generous, thoughtful and respectful, but what happens when it is not? Not natural. Out of control and in some instances—criminal. We know of job loss, alcoholism, poverty, homelessness, those struggling with gender identity, bullying, loneliness, anxiety, isolation and depression. What we rarely witness (hopefully) are the savage realities of substance abuse, rape, mental and physical violence against men, woman, children– thoughts and even actions towards suicide.
What we can share with you is the transformation we are experiencing today, locally, and what is propelling us to become the leading centre for access to improved mental wellness across the county.
If you know of the Northumberland Community Counselling Centre, chances are you have been a client, a supporter or just learned of us. There are several reasons for this. Namely, we have remained ‘under-the-radar’ out of necessity. Like a successful small business, our service is reportedly excellent, the need is very high and consequently the demand for service far outweighs our resources. Therefore we felt we were compelled to remain silent, to manage our resources, and manage our wait times with a focus on the clients we treat.
To coin a phrase, ‘the silence is deafening’, and we recognize there is little value remaining in the shadows. Our community—your community— is in critical need for change. No longer can our county endure “not-in-my-backyard” thinking when considering people’s mental wellbeing. Together, it’s time that we stand up and address the root causes for people’s mental instability, making changes where we can, while supporting and nurturing our friends and neighbours back to mental wellness.
As of 24 hours ago (from date of writing) Finland was named happiest country in the world. While it is not the role of the Northumberland Community Counselling Centre to “make people happy” it is interesting to learn that the Finns have two words for “happiness”. One of them describes that sensation of giddiness and elation, the other, “onnellinen” refers to a feeling of contentment. Feeling fortunate for what we have.
Let us ask ourselves, what do you want for yourself? For your family? Community? How do you wish people would act? Do you feel safe? Do you feel loved? Do you know people who reside in the shadows that you wish could emerge with a better outlook on their current life situation? What would you do if you were in a position to help?
Your Northumberland Community Counselling Centre has just moved its head office to a new location with an improved facility to host individuals, youth and families. We have added an office in Campbellford (General Hospital) and Colborne to improve access for help. We have recently partnered with Rebound Child Services and the Northumberland Hills Hospital to open walk-in counselling for youth, (two days a week). We are working diligently to increase our resource base so that we can better serve our community, serve more people in need while decreasing wait times and improving access to additional programs.
Together, we believe that we can work to make Northumberland the ‘happiest’ county in Canada? Together, can we help people reach “onnellinen”. It is our hope that you will consider becoming part of our community.
Ways to help, consider:
• Sharing our story
• Pay it forward —sponsor a person in need of professional
• Discuss the values of professional
counsel with friends & family, recommend the NCCC.
• Become a volunteer, become part of our extended community.
• Inform your Municipal, Provincial & Federal politicians that with
their assistance, we can become the ‘happiest’ community in Canada.