By Sophia Dawson
In the rural community of Medicine Lodge our commonwealth is abundant, valuable, and evident. Although I recognize each commonwealth on the map, there are a few assets that considerably catch the eye. Medicine Lodge, Kansas is a community rich in sense of place, foodshed, and the natural world. In my observations, there are some commonwealths that our community is rich in but seem to fly under the radar.
Reliable healthcare in a rural community is often scarce, but Medicine Lodge is extremely fortunate to have a supported healthcare system. Medicine Lodge Memorial Hospital and Physicians Clinic serves our community with exceptional skill and care. Services provided include but are not limited to: family practice, cardiology, well-baby checkups, outpatient surgery and endoscopy, radiology, lab and diagnostics and physical therapy. Next, Maydew-Thibault Optometry of Pratt, Kansas serves our community 3 days a week with quality eye care. In addition, Barber County Health Department offers an array of services for our county. Immunizations, foot care and fingernail care for senior citizens, family planning services, and an access point for SNAP, KANCARE, and WIC nutrition programs are all services offered to our community. Regarding mental health, Horizons Mental Health Service’s offers a wide variety of services for all ages including individual therapy and medication assessment. Our community has several other wellness resources such as Massage Haven, a women run, local business provides exceptional massages to enhance physical care. Mindful Remedies provides a selection of CBD products to enhance and better health. Finally, the Wellness Center provides our community with a gym, sauna and basketball court to keep our community active! Encouraging the community to utilize available healthcare services is a continuous goal!
Spirituality is a defining commonwealth that unites our community. Medicine Lodge has nine churches operating within our community. I believe that many people find spirituality through the land and sky in Barber County. We are gifted with beautiful sunsets, the Gyp Hills rich with minerals and stories of the past, and land from which our livelihood is rooted.
This community is wealthy in communal assets and mapping them emphasizes the importance of connecting each commonwealth to one another. This ensures that the community is aware of their connections and able to help one another grow!