A health fair put on by the Open Door Society on Thursday made newcomers feel more welcome in Saskatchewan by helping them learn the province’s health care system.
“When someone moves here, it’s a brand new place,” said communications manager Victoria Flores. “The way healthcare services function where they are from and here might be different.”
Joromi Arugha is a newcomer from Nigeria. He moved to Saskatchewan just eight days ago.
While the weather has been a hard adjustment, the health fair made the move a little easier.
“It makes it so easy,” he said. “It allows you to blend into the society.”
“Being healthy is part of feeling welcome in a society,” said Flores. “It’s important we connect them to the information they need so they can stay healthy.”
From vaccines to knowing where a good dentist is, the fair got newcomers acclimated to Saskatchewan.
It was also a chance for education on some tougher subjects like mental or reproductive health services and a chance to eliminate some stigma.
“We hope seeing them face to face and getting to know the people who are at the clinic will make them feel more comfortable to ask those questions,” said Amanda Dela Cruz, a licensed practical nurse for Planned Parenthood Regina.
But for Arugha and his family, its one step closer to making Saskatchewan feel more like home.
“I’ve come to a system that’s very organized and we’ll be kept in check,” he said. “We’re privileged.”