The Anchor Point Family Tree, crafted by Ben Firth of Ben Firth Studio, is the first thing visitors to the new health center see as they walk through the front door. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

The Anchor Point Family Tree, crafted by Ben Firth of Ben Firth Studio, is the first thing visitors to the new health center see as they walk through the front door. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

Anchor Point celebrates new community health center

After months of anticipation, the brand new SVT Health and Wellness Anchor Point Clinic is finally open for business on the corner of Sterling Highway and Milo Fritz Avenue.

The Anchor Point community turned out in droves to witness the grand opening and ribbon cutting ceremony last Saturday, March 8, their excitement unhampered by icy roads and overcast skies. Well over 100 people were estimated to be in attendance to witness the ribbon cutting ceremony led by SVT chief executive officer and president Crystal Collier.

Standing with her were architect Paul Baril from Nvision Architecture Inc, general contractors Jacob Baker and John Baker from Building Specialties Inc., Seldovia Village Tribe Council vice president Lillian Elvsaas, council secretary Trinket Gallien, council member Kim Collier, and council member John Crawford.

Before they cut the ribbon, Crystal Collier thanked the community for coming out to celebrate and supporting the construction of the new facility. SVT has been serving Anchor Point families since 2007, most recently in a rented commercial space adjacent to the Anchor River Inn.

However, due to an increase in patient visits to the Anchor Point clinic by 17 percent since 2015, it was clear that in order to continue serving the community properly, SVT was in need of a new, permanent home. The new facility provides more than double the space and allows for expanded health and wellness services.

“It’s taken a work of God to get to this point,” Collier said. “We want to continue walking this health journey with you.”

Also present were SVT Health and Wellness Director Emily Read and Director of Marketing and Public Relations Laurel Hilts. Beckie Noble, former SVT health center director and the project coordinator for the Anchor Point clinic, was absent due to a family emergency.

Pastor Jim Haning of the Anchor Point Baptist Church led the attendees in a prayer and blessing for the new facility. The above-mentioned council members and building contractors all cut the ribbon simultaneously and, at last, opened the doors to usher the community inside to tour their new facility.

When visitors walk in the front door, the first thing they will see is a large tree on the wall made from wood and glass. This is the Anchor Point Family Tree, made by Ben Firth of the Ben Firth Studio, and is a tribute to all those who donated to or facilitated the construction of the Anchor Point clinic.

The names of the individuals, families, and businesses who made donations are inscribed on the glass leaves of the tree in gold, silver, or bronze lettering, depending on the size of their donation. At the foot of the tree are stones inscribed with the names of businesses who contributed at least $500 to the project.

Leaves are still available for purchase, and the donation is tax deductible. For more information on opportunities to donate, contact Emily Read at 907-226-2228.

Contributions to the construction of the new clinic were also made by the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Anchor Point Foundation, the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, the Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority, the Rasmuson Foundation and Nvision Architecture, Inc.

According to a press release by Laurel Hilts from March 4, 2019, “our new state-of-the-art facility includes three exam rooms and the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Wellness Room, the Rasmuson Welcome Area, and additional staff offices.” The new heath clinic also boasts a laboratory, a health care provider’s office, a medical assistant’s station, laundry, employee break room, and a community room.

The clinic will be open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Appointments can be made by calling the Anchor Point Health Center’s direct line at 907-435-2238.

Staff at the Anchor Point clinic include family nurse practitioner Christine Brubaker, behavioral health therapist Osi Kaspi, licensed acupuncturist Ane Mane, health and wellness coach Patty Dolese, and healthy cooking instructor Sharon Bond.

Once a month, Sharon Bond and Patty Dolese will host healthy cooking classes in the community room at the clinic.

The first class is being offered from 1-3 p.m. on Tuesday, March 26.

Interested individuals can register by calling 907-435-3215 or emailing pdolese@svt.org.

Osi Kaspi is a licensed professional counselor who will be offering a variety of therapeutic services beginning in April. Ane Mane will also begin acupuncture services in April.

According to the press release, the “community gathering room…will be available in the future for use by partner agencies for meetings, workshops, and group sessions.”

SVT staff also hosted a dessert reception at the grand opening on March 8. Catering was provided by Darcy’s Decadent Designs and flowers were provided by the Alaska Flower Mill.

Delcenia Cosman is a freelance writer living in Anchor Point.

Members of the Anchor Point community and surrounding areas flock to the new SVT Health and Wellness center located on the corner of Sterling Highway and Milo Fritz Avenue for the grand opening ceremony and reception at noon Friday, March 8, 2019, in Anchor Point, Alaska. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

Members of the Anchor Point community and surrounding areas flock to the new SVT Health and Wellness center located on the corner of Sterling Highway and Milo Fritz Avenue for the grand opening ceremony and reception at noon Friday, March 8, 2019, in Anchor Point, Alaska. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

From left to right, John Baker, Jacob Baker, Paul Baril, Crystal Collier, Kim Collier, Trinket Gallien, Lillian Elvsaas, and John Crawford prepare to cut the ribbon for the new Anchor Point SVT Health and Wellness Center at the grand opening ceremony at noon Friday, March 8, 2019, in Anchor Point, Alaska. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

From left to right, John Baker, Jacob Baker, Paul Baril, Crystal Collier, Kim Collier, Trinket Gallien, Lillian Elvsaas, and John Crawford prepare to cut the ribbon for the new Anchor Point SVT Health and Wellness Center at the grand opening ceremony at noon Friday, March 8, 2019, in Anchor Point, Alaska. (Photo by Delcenia Cosman)

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