This month the Shalem team is witnessing a very exciting growth event in our life as an agency. Shalem’s head office in Hamilton will be moving into a new building in early February.
Our Hamilton home has been at 1 Young Street for 25 years. We’ve grown fond of the Medical Arts Building, and in many ways are sad to leave. However, in recent years it’s become clear that our growth would necessitate a change of venue—what a great reason to move!
We are moving to 875 Main Street East, a 2.5 story house about 5 minutes away. Here are some of the things that our team is most excited about:
First is the nature of this expansion. A very generous donor has bought the building for Shalem, allowing us to rent with an arrangement to buy that keeps our cost at the same rate as our current space. This gift will mean a qualitative change to how we are able to care for clients in Hamilton without challenging the budget, and we are so grateful for this gift!
Another aspect that we are excited about is the warmth of the space. It is a converted home, previously used by a team of psychologists. We see why they chose the space for their practice for many years. It has a very warm and comfortable vibe—lots of old wood features, fireplaces and charm. Our hope is that it creates a safe and comfortable place for healing conversations to happen.
Another detail that will be very appealing to our clients is parking. This has been a thorn in our side for many years, and a challenge for many clients using our services. In the new building there is both on-site parking spaces and generous street parking. We’re thrilled for the convenience this will bring for those visiting our space.
Perhaps the best aspect of this new office from the vantage point of the counselling team is the additional space—we are adding 2 counselling offices to our capacity, giving us a total of 5 offices and a greater ability to serve our clients. We will also be able to increase administrative support hours to include two evenings a week, again improving client care.
Given the focus on moving and all that is involved in this process, we have decided to postpone our conference on LGBTQ and Mental Health to the Fall of 2017. We’ll share the new date as soon as it is finalized.
Stay posted in coming weeks for social media and website information sharing new details about the new building, as well as an Open House gathering in coming months. Please consider joining us to celebrate this new stage with us!
Jennifer Bowen, M.Div., RMFT, is the Clinical Director of Shalem Mental Health Network’s Counselling Services.