Elgin-Portland Pastoral Charge Outreach

Aiding Rural Community Health (ARCH)

The Elgin United Church (EUC) “Aiding Rural Community Health” (ARCH) fund replaces the dissolved Dental Issues Group “DIG) Fund.  ARCH is EUCs way of supporting the Social Prescribing Flex Fund initiative. Currently, donations will be sent to the Social Prescribing Fund at Country Roads Community Health Centre, where the money will be used in the areas of greatest need. In the future, the ARCH fund will allow EUC flexibility in designating money to community health initiatives and needs as they arise.

Community Flex Fund (CFF)

The Community Flex Fund (CFF) is a fund Portland United Church uses to support local needs. Although not the only local initiative supported by the fund ,the main beneficiary is the Social Prescribing Flex Fund sponsored and operated by Country Roads Community Health Centre (see below for a more complete description). This fund replaces the Dental Issues Group which was limited in scope to Dental issues. Money for the CFF is raised through numerous fundraisers, direct donations and the pay by donation PUC Community Lunch held the fourth Tuesday of every month at the church.

Social Prescribing Flex Fund

The need for support of individuals exists throughout our community. Country Roads Community Health Clinic (CRCHC) is a provincial lead in a Social Prescribing initiative. Providers meet with a client and make a referral to the Social Prescribing Team to navigate and connect a client with the answers to their social need. By providing formal and informal supports for the client and assisting them in navigation of the systems, CRCHC assist them in meeting their wellness needs as close to their home community as possible.

In the past, donation dollars were earmarked for one particular group such as DIG (Dental Issues Group). With the development of Social Prescribing, and its lens on all social determinants, there is some flexibility to align the dollars with the carrying needs. In regards to oral health, dollars will continue to be used to support those who do not meet the criteria of provincial funds such as income cut offs or age restrictions. Donations designated specifically for the now dissolved group of Dental Issues Group, will be overseen by Rideau Community Health Services further support the clients who meet some of the criteria of the Seniors Oral Health Program. Dollars designated for the Social Prescribing Flex Fund, CRCHC will oversee these dollars for folks who do not meet any criteria for any provincial program.

Some concrete examples of how Social Prescribing donations have supported the holistic health of low- income residents in our community:

  • Vouchers for parking and gas to support families who must make multiple visits for treatment in hospitals in Kingston or Ottawa
  • Walking poles for a senior who was referred to a walking group to help alleviate health problems
  • Computer support:
    • A large screen monitor for a resident with vision issues
    • educational software for children with learning disabilities