Premier Christy Clark joined staff of the Pacific Autism Family Network to cut the ribbon on the GoodLife Fitness Family Autism Hub Wednesday afternoon.

VIDEO: State-of-the-art autism facility opens in Richmond

60,000-square-foot space aims to be a one-stop shop for families looking for help.




A new centre in Richmond is providing first-of-its-kind support for families affected by autism spectrum disorder and other related disorders.

Premier Christy Clark joined staff of the Pacific Autism Family Network to cut the ribbon on the GoodLife Fitness Family Autism Hub Wednesday afternoon.

Hundreds of donors, and family and friends of network co-founders Wendy Lisogar-Cocchia and Sergio Cocchia got a look inside the new facility that supports those living with a disorder that effects up to 69,000 people in B.C.

The 60,000-square-foot space includes clinics, labs, classrooms, observation rooms, and information kiosks, and is home to the Variety Children’s Treatment Centre.

“Families need one phone number, one website, one place to start,” Wendy told the crowd.

Construction crews broke ground two years ago, after Wendy and Sergio created the network to raise money.

Large donations include $20 million from the province, $5 million from GoodLife Fitness, and $100,000 from LifeLabs to support an easier blood collection program. Those with autism often find it traumatic to draw blood.

Members of the Mayday Club Youth Choir for Autism Advocacy were on hand to sing the national anthem in the centre’s auditorium.

Nicole Provost, who directs the Abbotsford-based group made up of youth on the autism spectrum, calls the new facility “special.”

“(It will) fulfill a need in B.C. that hasn’t been filled previously,” she said.

 

Just Posted

Surrey RCMP seek family of elderly woman found wandering in Surrey

Public asked to help identify South Asian woman who is not able to communicate with police

Strong winds, rain knock out power to thousands in Lower Mainland

More than 34,000 BC Hydro customers in the dark on Sunday morning in region and Sunshine Coast

Semiahmoo wins Surrey RCMP Basketball Classic for second straight year

Totems’ senior boys battle back to top Tamanawis in tourney final at Enver Creek Saturday

Flavourful journey through the city

BIA’s Taste White Rock event returns

WIND WARNING: Metro Vancouver expecting 100 km/h gusts Saturday night

Environment Canada issues warns of possibly dangerous conditions

VIDEO: Surrey reviewing Clayton crosswalk after pedestrian hit

The city says investigation in response to safety concerns from local resident

Liberals quietly tap experts to write new paternity leave rules

Ideas include creating an entirely new leave benefit similar to one that exists in Quebec

Insurers say Canadian weather getting hotter, wetter and weirder

Average number of days with heavy rain or snow across Canada has been outside norm since spring 2013

Final phase of MDMA-assisted psychotherapy trials to kick off in B.C.

Doctors hope to get psychedelic-assisted psychotherapy legalized in Canada and the U.S. by 2021

VIDEO: Vancouver Giants blanked by Portland Winterhawks

Saturday’s 2-0 setback marks first regulation loss for G-Men in 10 games

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

VIDEO: Remember the Voyageurs at Fort Langley

Two-day historical festival underway

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

Most Read