Our Core Values:
Shortly after arriving in Fort McMurray in August of 2008, and subsequent to his election as Lead Pastor at the Family Christian Centre, Rev. Edwin Rideout set out to conduct his own evaluation of the social needs of the Wood Buffalo Region. In a subsequent meeting with Mayor Melissa Blake during the Winter of 2009 he posed a simple but profound question: “When considering the unique role of the Church in Fort McMurray, and having a good understanding of the great works already being accomplished by many of our community-minded Churches, what would you say is an area of concern the Family Christian Centre should focus upon?” Without hesitation, Mayor Blake responded, “There continues to be a tremendous need for counselling; especially in the areas of family/relational dynamics and addictions.”
Over the next several months, Edwin continued his evaluation relative to the perceived ‘social needs of the Wood Buffalo Region.’ For the most part he concluded that the Provincial and Municipal Governments, together with, the non-profit sector is providing exceptional coverage. Our citizens are generally well care for. However, there was significant evidence indicating the need for additional counselling services; especially in the area of family/relational dynamics, Youth and Children services, and substance abuse.
After further information gathering, much prayer, and conducting a series of ‘vision-casting’ sessions with the Board of Directors at the Family Christian Centre; a new mission for the Family Christian Centre was established — one which included the establishment of a Counselling Centre for Wood Buffalo as a major element. The first attempt to establish a Counselling service was made in the Fall of 2010. However, a year later a decision was taken to revisit the model —the financial cost to launch the Centre was a major obstacle; there was a definite need to establish a corporate donor base.
Eighteen months later the miracle occurred! Early in December 2013, Edwin received a phone call from Dr. Dell Bouck, co-owner of the Legacy Group of companies. Over a coffee at his office, Dell committed to a long-term partnership with the Family Christian Centre, for the purpose of establishing a Counselling Centre to serve the Wood Buffalo Region. The very first cheque was presented to Rev. Edwin Rideout a few days later, in the amount of $300,000.00.
Another year would slip by as final plans were formulated, staff recruited, and a facility to house the Centre secured. This brings us to a second major miracle: Securing a facility adequate to house a Centre would require a minimum of 5,000 ft2 of space. At $60.00 ft2—The going rate in Fort McMurray — it would consume a significant portion of our budget, possibly delaying the launch indefinitely. Thankfully, late in 2013 The Family Christian Centre received approval from the Regional Municipal of Wood Buffalo to expand its Centre. This would free up 5,000 ft2 of space. After some negotiation, the Family Christian Centre leased the necessary space to Legacy Counselling Centre for $20.00 ft2— a third of the going rate. The lease also came with many other perks that would not be realized at other locations.
Finally, January 01, 2015 the Legacy Counselling Centre opened it’s doors to serve the needs of the citizens who call the Wood Buffalo Region home. This continues to be a journey of faith. Additional funds and staff are needed. Holistic and compassionate care are necessary ingredients to ensure people who fall on hard times are nurtured back to wholeness!