Envision Counselling and Support Centre held its Annual General Meeting last night in the Community Room at the Weyburn Credit Union. The non-profit organization is celebrating 30 years of serving southeast Saskatchewan.

In 2023, its staff of 50-plus supported 1,937 individuals, couples, and families in need.

During the meeting, Former Board Chair Ann Favreau passed the torch to the newly-elected Chair, Roberta DeRosier of Estevan. DeRosier was the Vice Chair for the past two years, which is the way the organization creates a streamlined board succession.

"I'm feeling confident and hopefully I have the right tools to get the job done," she shared. "Envision definitely doesn't like staying where they're at. They definitely like looking towards the future and what we can do. I think it's no secret that everybody's looking for some sort of a shelter in southern Saskatchewan at some point. So we all kind of have our eye on that and there's no firm plans yet, but it's definitely a direction that we want to go."

During the meeting, presentations were made on the financials from auditor MNP, a Statistics overview, Rapid Access Counselling, and Child and Youth Counselling. 

As well, a new Strategic Plan was unveiled. It supports their newly redefined mission statement, 'to provide inclusive supports that nurture healing, resilience, and positive change'.

Derosier from Estevan said they develop a new Strategic Plan every five years. 

"We just completed this one. It just kind of makes sure that everybody, from your casual staff to the executive director to the board, is on the same page going in the right direction."

"I just want to say how proud I am to be a part of this organization. It truly is an incredible organization that is really making a difference in our area. Yeah, love it." 

envision agm

Their strategic priorities are: 

1. Developing and delivering essential programming and services
2. Strengthening networking opportunities
3. Building staff capacity and expansion
4. Increasing financial supports and maintain financial stability
5. Providing excellence in governance

Representatives were in attendance from the Ministry of Social Services and the Ministry of Justice, as well as almost all of the organization's 50 staff members, and most of the 11 board members.

During Favreau's retirement speech, she said, "Every day, we are surrounded by empowered individuals who aspire to enact positive change in our world. These individuals inspire us all to strive for excellence and continuous improvement. Our recent strategic planning session revitalized our team, infusing us with renewed energy and enthusiasm for the future. We eagerly anticipate what the next few years will bring as we continue our journey of making a difference in the lives of those we serve."

She also shared that the year commenced with the rollout of their latest counselling initiative, the Rapid Access Counselling program for Children, Youth, and their Caregivers, offering services throughout the region, located in our Estevan, Weyburn, Carlyle, and Oxbow offices. 

"Generously funded by Saskatchewan Health Authority through Family Services Saskatchewan, this program has garnered enthusiastic reception across all areas. Understanding the financial intricacies of our organization highlights Envision's pivotal role in Southeast Saskatchewan. Managing 13 distinct programs, each within its allocated budget, demonstrates the breadth of our operational impact. In the 2023-2024 fiscal year, our total operating budget exceeded $2 million. As expected, the majority of our budget is dedicated to our most valuable asset—our employees. With a team of over 50 full-time and part-time employees, Envision allocated more than $1.6 million to compensation and benefits."

"We deeply appreciate the unwavering support we receive from our government funders, whose contributions are essential in sustaining our services and enhancing community well-being. Special recognition is extended to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Social Services, Saskatchewan Ministry of Justice, Saskatchewan Health Authority, and the United Way of Estevan and Regina for their steadfast commitment. In addition to the crucial financial support, we are genuinely grateful for the continuous collaboration and assistance we receive from our funders throughout the year."

Favreau noted that while government programs serve as the primary source of funding for Envision's operations, the organization also relies on fundraising, sponsorships, and donations from businesses and residents in the communities they serve. 

"If you have contributed financially during this fiscal period, or in the past, we extend a heartfelt thank you. Your generosity is deeply appreciated, and we cherish the relationships we have built within the communities we serve."

"As an agency, Envision remains dedicated to bridging service gaps in Southeast Saskatchewan. In the fall of 2023, we initiated our Strategic Planning process to chart Envision's course for the coming years. This invaluable opportunity allowed both employees and the board to reflect on our collective vision and mission, fostering a shared sense of purpose and motivation to propel us forward."

In 2023, Envision offered 698 Rapid Access Counselling sessions to individuals and families in need; Spent a total of 11,792.06 hours supporting Family Support and Diversion clients; Collaborated with over 13 other partner agencies to provide innovative supports within its communities; Provided 300 sessions to children who have been exposed to violence; Provided 3,784 counselling sessions; recorded 1,520 program referrals for services; supported 237 individuals and families at risk for violence within the new family intervention rapid support team program; and drove over 279,934 km to reach Family Support and Diversion clients across the southeast corner of the Province.

Find the Envision website HERE.