Three years ago a group of dedicated women, who wanted to make a difference in Saskatchewan, developed a retreat program for Indigenous girls.

This year, the group decided to formalize and grow as a non-profit co-op — and Co-operatives First was honoured to help the group form the Heart Linked Community Services Co-operative.

The co-op continues to provide programs for at-risk youth from Northern communities — participants have come from La Loche, La Ronge, and Sandy Bay. Now that it has incorporated as a co-op, founding member Cathy Edwards said the organization “is poised to blossom into something more”.

The co-op plans to expand its programming to include building positive life skills, and has received funds to build an online platform to reach even more young people in new ways. It also plans to develop a new facility to host events next year.

Started by Edwards (an entrepreneur with backgrounds in accounting, law, and hospitality) and Shelley Kavia (a pharmacist with a passion for wholistic health and philanthropy), Heart Linked Community Services Co-op will continue to make a big impact on Saskatchewan communities.