College launches GPRC Cares campaign to support community during COVID-19 response
Wednesday, April 8th, 2020
GPRC launches GPRC Cares to support the community during the COVID-19 response.
GRANDE PRAIRIE – Grande Prairie Regional College (GPRC) is launching its new “GPRC Cares” initiative to support the communities it serves while we respond together to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“GPRC knows how deeply the response to this global pandemic has affected organizations, businesses and individual families in our communities and we want to make sure GPRC is part of helping people through these challenging times,” said Dr. Robert Murray, President and CEO of GPRC.
GPRC’s response to COVID-19 saw most of its courses, services and programs move online in a matter of days in the middle of March. It was a tremendous effort by staff and faculty to make this transition as seamless as possible for students.
Now, the College has started to make many of the services it offered in-person daily to students available online for the entire community.
The “GPRC Cares” initiative has two key focuses – the first being a mental health strategy for GPRC staff, students and the broader community, and the second being a community outreach program to assist those in need during the COVID crisis.
GPRC’s mental health program is doing live weekly video seminars by videoconference between noon and 1 p.m. in addition to a regular Mental Health Tip. Students and faculty in Fine Arts are performing and sharing music online that inspires them in difficult times. Wolves Athletics and the Sport, Fitness, Wellness department are working on at-home workouts and sharing inspiring tips for their student athletes that will be shared online for the entire community to try.
All this is being shared on the College’s social media accounts and can be found on GPRC’s YouTube channel. Follow GPRC on social media to stay up to date on these initiatives.
“We take seriously our responsibility to help the community tackle the problems and challenges being faced and these are just some of the examples we could make our expertise widely available to the community,” said Dr. Murray.
GPRC is also reaching out to other community organizations who are directly helping members of our communities to see what supports are needed. Our goal is to connect these needs to GPRC staff supported by College resources. For example, various community organizations are working on initiatives to deliver meals, groceries and prescriptions to those who need such supports and the College is exploring having staff use fleet vehicles to help these organizations.
Other community organizations are pairing local residents with seniors and other community members who are experiencing isolation to connect with a phone call, letter, or video chat to help build community connections and reduce those feelings of isolation. GPRC is finding ways to support those organizations by supporting our employees to get involved in these important initiatives.
“I’m so proud of everything our staff and faculty have done to serve our students these past several weeks as we responded to COVID-19. We could not have accomplished this without the support of the communities we serve, and these are just some small ways in which GPRC can shows it cares and can give back,” said Dr. Murray.