The Child Development Centre has long been well known by our closest community partners, our School Boards and others that work with us on a regular basis. However for a variety of reasons, we have been far from the “household name” that many Children’s Treatment Centres are in their communities. As a department within Hotel Dieu Hospital, we are sometimes confused with the Department of Child and Adolescent Mental Health or the Children’s Outpatient Centre. We have even been confused with another service provider in our catchment area with the same name!
Like many sectors, ours has undergone a great deal of change in the past number of years. We are proud of our history, from the early days of pioneering an integrated approach to children’s rehabilitation; the inclusion of the Infant and Child Development program in KFL&A; our early adoption of the family centred model of care in the 1990s; our extensive community collaboration and teaching role; and most recently, our active championing of the provincial Special Needs Strategy.
We have worked hard to respond to ever-increasing need, new technologies, and changing expectations from families. The population of children and youth we served 15 or more years ago has changed significantly. While we are certainly still “home” to many children and youth with complex motor needs and medical complexity we are also providing services to children and youth with autism and developmental delays along the continuum from mild to severe. Our staff continues to grow and evolve, and we are constantly innovating to provide the best possible services across our catchment areas with the resources available.
For some time now, staff have known that it was time to say a fond farewell to our name and out-dated logo and come up with a new name and modern look for the centre that is more in step with who we are now and where we are heading. Over the past several years, a group of dedicated staff and families have been working towards a name change for our centre, and it has proved to be a daunting task!
We wanted to arrive on a name that says something about who we are in our communities, and who we serve – without being limiting. We wanted a name that reflects our values of respect and inclusion. We wanted to include youth in our name, since we provide services to those up to the age of 18 years or 21 if they are still in school. We wanted a name that can grow with us in this time of system transformation and constant change. Most importantly, we wanted our name to be fun and family-friendly… as one of our moms put it “it should sound like a place where my kid would be excited to go.”
We hope you enjoy our new name and look as much as we do!