Smoky River Family and Community Support Services – In Focus
Community Development Coordinator
The Smoky River Community Transportation is now in its 13th year of operating and is unique to the Smoky River region. This program, administered by Smoky River FCSS, is funded through user fees and the generosity of our five municipalities – the MD of Smoky River No. 130, the Towns of Falher and McLennan as well as the Villages of Donnelly and Girouxville. The program originated to provide access to doctors and specialists in the larger centres. It has evolved into a program that encourages social visits to family and friends for all residents in the Smoky River region. This program has two units, a 20-passenger bus as well as a mini van, both units are wheelchair accessible. The drivers of the program have had their criminal record checks, as well as the Youth Intervention Check and carry current first aid training as well as the AED training.
Who can ride? Residents of the Smoky River region can all access the van for scheduled trips to Peace River and Grande Prairie as well as additional special trips organized by FCSS to Grande Prairie, Valleyview or Slave Lake for socialization, Winagami Park or Saskatoon Island for a relaxing picnic and to pick Saskatoon berries.
The community transportation program is also utilized by the FCSS Summer youth program, providing opportunities for the youth around the region as well as weekly trips for swimming in Falher and weekly trips to Winagami. Our youth programming also provides youth trips throughout the year for opportunities in and around the region to offer alternatives and new experiences.
In addition, the smaller unit is used for non-emergent medical trips from the local hospital to residences in the Smoky River region by persons unable to travel in a normal vehicle. The units can also be rented by individuals or families for residents in need of being transported to medical appointments with or without a wheel chair. Rentals are subject to user fees established by the Smoky River Transportation Committee, which consists of the funding municipalities. Rentals are also subject to guidelines that are also established by the same committee.
If you would like to receive a three-month schedule for the Smoky River Transportation program please contact us at the office (780) 837-2220 so we may add you to the mail out list!
It takes dollars to keep this program going!! And, our municipalities have generously contributed to the program since the beginning and can only do so much! So, Diana Penner and her husband Andy from Manitoba (formerly from the Town of Mclennan), have donated $500 to the Smoky River Transportation Program and are issuing a challenge to residents and businesses in the Smoky River region to donate! Diana is a former driver for the program and knows firsthand how important this program is to people in the Smoky River region. She is the lady in pink in the attached picture on one of her many trips when she was living here. She has driven people to doctor appointments, to visit at the hospital, to shop and socialize. She has also taken youth on trips to learn more about the region or to explore many venues in the Smoky River municipality.
Please help your community! Donate to the Smoky River Transportation program! Donations are tax deductible over $20 and cheques are to be made payable to the Town of Falher.