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Wednesday , 25 May 2022

Bonnyville Youth Group The Hive painting welcoming mural

A dedicated team of community groups, led by the Primary Care Network, has been working hard to bring an exciting concept to fruition for the youth of the Bonnyville and surrounding area. Today, those youth will be painting a mural at the new location of ‘The Hive’ located at 5011 50 Ave on Main Street in Bonnyville.

The goal of The Hive is to integrate health and social services into a youth-friendly environment. Through partnerships with existing agencies and businesses in the communities and easy access to these essential resources in one hub, all youth needs can be met with compassion and collaboration.

“It’s best understood as the integration of health and social services and a youth-friendly environment,” Mayor Elisa Brosseau from the Town of Bonnyville told Lakeland Connect on the Morning After.

Mayor Brosseau said ‘The Hive’ is a safe space where youth between 14 and 21 could go hang out and they have about six dimensions where they can help them if they should need it.

“Resume building, mentorship counseling, just an inclusive atmosphere, exercise classes, a coffee house, it’s really going to be geared to what the youth feel is missing for them in this community,” Brosseau said. “If you follow them on social media, they’ve got amazing campaigns.”

Named “The Hive” for the positive energy and social nature of the space and located on Main Street (in the former Thinkwerx location), students and community partners have been visualizing how to create the ideal new space along with organizing funding partners to bring their ideas to life.

“It’s been an exciting but challenging time working to bring this idea to life through the pandemic but we know our community and our kids need access to this kind of space, so we persevered to make it happen,” shared Chantal Vallee, NP Chair of The Hive Steering Committee.

“Outside of sports venues and schools, what safe space do our kids have in this community to be together? In addition to the social aspect, if they aren’t comfortable or don’t know how to access mental health or physician’s help, The Hive will be a place for them to be welcomed and supported,” she added.

With support from the Canadian Mental Health Association, Bonnyville FCSS, Northern Lights, École des Beau Lacs and Lakeland Catholic School Divisions, Dragonfly Counselling and Support Centre as well as early sponsors like Lakeland Coop, Ross + Sylvestre CA, Sure Shot Wireline, S&T Energy Services, and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd, the support is very strong and momentum is building.

Members of The Hive plan on painting the walls of the building today, April 5, and on Thursday, April 7. Make sure you give them a honk when you’re driving by to show your support.

“Youth in our community have come together to design a mural wall that is unique and showcases the Lakeland and The Hive,” Youth coordinator Aimie Kathan told Lakeland Connect. “They have also included an instagrammable wall. They are very excited to be able to come together and do this project for their Hive Cafe.”

For more information on The Hive click here.

About Arthur C. Green

Arthur C. Green is an award winning journalist and is from Whitbourne Newfoundland. Green graduated from the CNA Journalism Program. Arthur also studied Business Marketing and Political Science at Memorial University in Essex England and St. John's Newfoundland. Green has worked for such organizations as CBC, CBC Radio, NTV, Saltwire, Great West Media, CKLB Radio, River Radio, Vista Radio, and Postmedia. He also loves Jiggs Dinner and can fillet a Codfish.