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A place for community growth

Our creativity comes from our ability to envision potential, sometimes even before our clients do. In the case of Lethbridge Family Services (LFS), our Stantec Lethbridge team saw an underutilized courtyard space at their facility, and imagined the possibilities for a social, educational, and programming space that would serve the goals of LFS, and even the community beyond.

Our team had previously supported the organization through employee and client event fundraising, seeing the value they provide to the Southwestern Alberta community. LFS serves over 6,800 individuals and families through their work in counseling, outreach, education, disability services, home care, and immigrant services.

We wanted to take that support a step further, and donate our design services to convert their relatively empty courtyard into a rich, vibrant space with the capability to serve a number of purposes for the organization’s staff and clients. Our design team invited LFS representatives to join in an interactive design session to ensure that the space would be everything LFS needed and wanted it to be. Then, what started as a design activity quickly became an exercise in community building. LFS and Stantec were both engaging their community and industry partners to secure donations of materials and services to make this dream a reality.

The response was overwhelming, and with design and materials in place, the Stantec Lethbridge staff and their families joined LFS staff to actually construct the space. The crew literally got their hands dirty, landscaping, building, and painting over two weekends to complete the build.

For our staff, it was so much more than a design exercise. For LFS, it was so much more than a sponsorship. Watch the video to hear about the experience from Stantec’s Kathryn Kitt and LFS’s Melody Garner.

Our Stantec Lethbridge team designed and built an outdoor space with endless social, educational, and programming potential.

Transcript of the video follows
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<p>Kathryn Kitt:</p> <p>“It’s been a really good learning experience both in terms of what Lethbridge Family Services has to offer in the community and how we can give back to it. We are donating this portion of the design process but we will also be involved in the construction and that is where we can take the whole Stantec family in our office and their families and we will be able to build the whole site for them.”</p> <p>Melody Garner:</p> <p>“We had this incredible experience today with the team at Stantec. Our staff actually got to engage in hands-on design for a space that only they are going to use but that our clients are going to use and that the community is going to use.”</p> <p>Kathryn Kitt:</p> <p>“It was a good project to see our work from start to finish in a slightly different context. We were able to use all of our Design Tools as well as all of our Construction management skills sets all the way through and to see it first-hand because we didn’t have somebody coming in partway through the project and doing a piece for us. We physically went in and ordered the materials and put all of the pieces into the group ourselves rather than relying on some of the trades that we often do.”</p> <p>“One of the things that struck me the most and made it the most rewarding was to see how quickly they made it their own.”</p> <p>“We could see the potential of what it could be and I think that is the most rewarding piece. It’s a beautiful site and it’s nice to be in and see and look at but to see it used and to see what it means to the people that will be using the facility is a tremendous reward.”</p> <p>Melody Garner:</p> <p>“To us at LFS this is more than just a space. This is our place where our clients can connect with nature, can learn and can really grow as individuals and we can really grow as an agency.”</p> <p>“I can’t tell you how immense this transformation has been from where we started to where we are headed and what the final outcome is going to look like. It’s life changing.”</p> <p>“Having partners like Stantec, that are community leaders and that are engaged with the most vulnerable populations also sends the message to our clients that they are not alone in this world and that the Business Community cares for them, that the whole community cares for them and that we are here working together. Our whole agency is so pleased to have Stantec as a partner because we know that we going to be able to make so much more of a difference in people’s lives because of the partnership.”</p>

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