Boyle McCauley News

Since 1979 • April-May 2024 • Circulation 5000

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Multicultural Health Brokers Cooperative (MCHB)

Supporting newcomers to Edmonton.

The Edmonton Intercultural Centre (EIC) is a community full of love, caring, and support. In this and future articles, we will inform readers of the non-profit organizations operating in the EIC facility in order to bring light to their many good deeds.

Multicultural Health Brokers Cooperative (MCHB) merged out of a public health initiative to enhance maternal and infant health within immigrant and refugee communities. Since 1995, MCHB has supported immigrant, refugee, and other newcomer families isolated because of cultural and linguistic distance. 

What is a Multicultural Health Broker? A Multicultural Health Broker is a bilingual and bicultural community health worker who practices “cultural brokering” and is often a member of the community they serve. The practice of cultural brokering is an intentional act of linking, bridging, and mediating between our families or communities with formal systems for the purposes of reducing conflict and creating change. 

MCHB is an award-winning cooperative recognized for its services to communities by Public Interest Alberta, the Alberta College of Social Workers, the Canadian Worker Co-operative Federation, Capital Heath, and the Edmonton Mennonite Centre for Newcomers.

MCHB is dedicated to fostering reciprocal exchange, mutual transformation, and equitable relationships. These are values that resonate throughout their diverse range of programs and services, such as the “First Step to Integration” initiative, a cornerstone of the English for Employment program launched in September 2016. This program has successfully assisted more than 190 newcomer students in acquiring training and securing meaningful employment in Canada. It not only imparts essential linguistic skills, but also aids participants in navigating and seamlessly adjusting to the intricacies of Canadian work culture. MCHB recognizes the importance of embracing multicultural perspectives as a means to enrich communities and fortify the fabric of society. 

Other programs and services include Perinatal Health Outreach, Multicultural Family Connections, Family Support for Children with Disabilities, Food Dignity Program (such as the MCHB Grocery Run), Mental Health Counselling and Therapy, and more. 

MCHB has more than 100 multilingual community health workers of diverse cultural backgrounds. They serve families within 25 local communities including Arabic-speaking, Bhutanese, Chinese, English-speaking African, Eritrean, Ethiopian, Filipino-speaking, South Asian, Somali, Spanish-speaking, Sudanese, Turkish, and Vietnamese, all working to deliver MCHB’s programs and services in the first language at no cost to the individual or family. 

For more information, please visit MCHB’s website at www.mchb.org or call 780-423-1973.

Information provided by the Edmonton Intercultural Centre, which is located at 9538 107 Avenue.

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