The Les Passerelles Heart for Social Pediatrics will open its doorways in August in Saint-Martin

The four co-founders of the project, namely Lynda Nadeau, far left, dr. Hélène Cormier, France Fortin and Karyna St-Pierre, behind, as well as others. Julie Poulin, go ahead. (Photo: Amélie Carrier)

The Center for Social Pediatrics (CPS) Les Passerelles opens its doors on August 8 in Saint-Martin. Ready to welcome their customers as soon as the construction holidays return, the latter will occupy the ground floor of the former municipal presbytery. Intended for children aged 0 to 18 who find themselves in vulnerable situations, its free services will be targeted at residents of the Beauce-Sartigan MRC.

The first social enterprise of its kind to be established on the territory of the MDGs, the idea behind which arose from the desire to offer children and their families local medical and psychosocial services in complementarity with the community network and the health network.

“The trigger was the closure of schools in March 2020 due to the pandemic. It was then that I took steps to establish a CPS in the region, the fourth in the Chaudière-Appalaches after Lévis, Thetford and Sainte-Marie, ”explains Karyna St-Pierre, the initiator of the project.

Surround yourself with people from different backgrounds
A psychoeducator living in Saint-Martin, the latter will act, among other things, as a volunteer for the strategic and operational aspects of the organization. She also surrounded herself with four women who are currently working or have worked in the past, directly or indirectly, on a daily basis with young people in order to bring her project to fruition.

These are primarily dr. Julie Poulin, a pediatrician who has owned her clinic for 35 years, will take over the role of on-site clinical director, and others. Hélène Cormier, family doctor in Beauce for twenty years. France Fortin, a child and adolescent psychologist in Saint-Georges, as well as Lynda Nadeau, a teacher at the Grande-Coudée primary school in Saint-Martin, are also co-founders of this new Center for Social Pediatrics.

“Many people from different spheres also believed in my initiative, joined me and contributed to its success. I am thinking in particular of the members of the board of directors and the start-up committee, as well as all the people who had a supporting role with all of us, “added Ms.yes St Pierre.

Incomparable mobilization of citizens
Strongly believing in this mission of proximity to the community and wanting to preserve the vocation of the presbytery, Martinois entrepreneur Jean-François Drouin, co-president of Matre, bought the building with the aim of welcoming the CPS within its walls. He also wanted to take on the full cost of the renovation.

“From citizens to business people, including the Chamber of Commerce and members of the municipal council, the entire village of Saint-Martin has shown great interest and great commitment to the project. Several important players also wanted to work together to improve it, such as the Chaudière-Appalaches Integrated Health and Social Services Center, the Beauce-Etchemin School Services Center and the Department of Youth Protection, ”says Lynda Nadeau.

It should be noted that the Center de pediatrie sociale Les Passerelles will be funded in equal parts thanks to fundraising organized by the local population, the contribution of the Fondation du Dr Julien, as well as subsidies from the Ministry of the Family.

Give a voice to the child and his family
Advocating for the values ​​of listening, respect, benevolence and the right to equality, Saint-Martin CPS will not be an outpatient clinic for occasional health problems. Instead, its goal will be to detect, reduce or eliminate toxic stresses that hinder the development of children’s full potential, as well as to detect a lack of response to their basic needs and rights.

“Social pediatrics developed by Dr. Gilles Julien is a medical practice that combines social, family and community networks with social sciences and law. It is a human, personalized and global health approach without condemnation. It is offered in a warm and hospitable environment in which the child is listened to, heard and brought to take care of themselves, ”informs Dr. Julie Poulin.

In order to create a protective circle around the child and to give him back the power to progress and realize his dreams, many stakeholders and organizations will work together to provide care and services that will positively impact their physical and emotional journey, in addition to improving quality of their lives.

“Assessment and subsequent examinations, given only on the basis of a referral, will always be performed by a doctor in tandem with a social worker. They will take the time to establish an action plan based on the strengths and skills of young people and their families. Every child will have the opportunity to be accompanied by important adults at all meetings “, says Dr. Hélène Cormier.

Improved service offering over time
An interdisciplinary team will improve the service offering over time. Services in special education, psychoeducation and speech therapy will be developed with the support of individual members of the start-up committee who want to actively contribute to their implementation. Frans Fortin, a psychologist, will also join the team on a weekly basis.

Selected by the Clinique Ostéo-Physio Familiale as one of the organizations benefiting from its Solidarity Fund, the Center will be able to meet the specific needs of its patients in occupational therapy, physiotherapy and osteopathy thanks to this partnership, of which it is particularly proud.

A highly esteemed gesture of generosity
After more than two years of effort and approaching the realization of the project, the co-founders were recently awarded a prize offered as part of the In the Heart of Your Community program, launched by Promutuel Assurances Chaudière-Appalaches.

The latter would therefore like to thank this company for its generosity, which enabled CPS Les Passerelles to earn $ 75,000 in financial support, in addition to giving this advertisement wide visibility.

It should be noted that people who are interested in the general management of the Center, who want to work in it as professionals (social worker, psychoeducator) or want to get involved as volunteers are invited to send an e-mail to

Board members
Jean-Francois Drouinchairman (co-chairman of the Matra group);
Louis Bilodeauvice president (city councilor in Saint-Martin);
Catherine GiguereTreasurer (CSSBE Education Manager);
Karen Lacroix (Social Worker in the DPJ Youth Program for CISSS-CA);
Dr. Julie Poulin (pediatrician);
Guillaume Rancourt (Educator specializing in private practice at the Clinique de l’Enfant);
Karyna St-Pierre (Psychoeducator in CISSS-CA).

Start-up committee members
Louis Bilodeau (member of the Saint-Martin Chamber of Commerce);
Robert Boucher (pharmacist at the Boucher et Morin pharmacy);
Andree-Anne Buteau (speech therapist and interim clinical coordinator at CISSS-CA);
Melissa Cliche (manager at CISSS-CA);
Annie Deblois (Social worker and special education teacher at Cégep Beauce Appalaches);
Catherine Giguere (Deputy Director of Education Services at CSSBE);
Raynald Goudreau (psychologist);
Sarah Pare (Psychoeducator and special education teacher at Cégep Beauce Appalaches);
Milisa Pepin (City Councilor of Saint-Martin);
Louise-Andree Poulin (Social Worker, M.Sc. and Assistant Interim President and Director General of CISSS-CA);
Sandra Poulin (Intervention Assistant at Le Havre l’Éclaircie);
Sarah Rodrigue (CEO of Beauce Etchemins Community Development Corporation);
Maryna Veilleux (Social Worker for DPJ in CISSS-CA).

Supporting roles
Susie Bouffard (Notary with notaries Suzie and Yves Bouffard);
Elise Cabanac (Concertmaster at the Dr Julien Foundation);
Jean-Francois Drouin (Co-Chair of the Matra Group);
Olivier Duval (Community organizer in the Office for Cross-Sectoral Action and Community Relations Support);
Lany Fortin (Beauce Economic Council Development Officer);
Micheline Grenier (member of the Community);
Yves Rancourt (member of the Community);
Marie-Mathilde Gay Degardin (Director of the Support and Certification Office at the Dr Julien Foundation);
Johanne Journeault (Territorial Development Officer at MRC Beauce-Sartigan);
Paul Morin (Lecturer in 2e cycle of education management and training programs at the University of Sherbrooke);
Stephanie Robert (Economic Development Officer at the Beauce Economic Council);
Maude Julien (Executive Director of the Center for Social Pediatrics in Lévis).

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