The Carleton Community Centre is a public amenity located on the Lower West Side of Saint John that aims to promote wellness and quality of life in community members through the provision of various different social, recreational, and basic-needs programs/services. Also known as the ‘Neighborhood Hub’ by staff and residents in the community, the Carleton Community Centre has been serving residents of the West Side for nearly 160 years.
Today, the Carleton Community Centre is a recognized registered charity that operates primarily on donations, grants, and service agreements with the city of Saint John. The Carleton Community Centre offers an assortment of recreational activities to keep all members of the community busy –regardless of age, gender, culture, physical ability, etc. From providing meals to families who are struggling to make ends meet to hosting special community events, the Carleton Community Centre is creating a lower west where residents are valued, and no one is left behind.
The original building that houses the Carleton Community Centre was constructed in 1863. It served as a public meeting hall and was used by the water department, health department and even the police, who had a lock up in the basement. While a fire destroyed the third story in 1925, the hall was rebuilt and used as a theatre until the 1950s when it became a recreation centre. In 1970, the City of Saint John took over full operations to deliver recreational programming. Since then, the Carleton Community Centre has seen many generations of west side residents come through its doors.
What began as a recreation centre for families and youth in the Lower West Side has grown to become much more. Today, users come from far beyond the borders of the lower west side to participate in youth and adult sport, seniors fitness, art classes, cooking classes, computer access, social activities, and educational and life skill development opportunities.
Residents now also benefit from the addition of primary healthcare services offered at the Market Place Wellness Centre, food security services through the West Side Food Bank, and even gardening plots at the community garden. All of these assets contribute to improving the quality of life for west side residents.
Our Mission, Vision and Objectives
The Carleton Community Centre inspires and promotes a holistic approach to wellness and quality of life through the delivery and support of programs and activities responsive to local needs.
To create a Lower West that is a thriving community where residents feel valued and no one is left behind.
To provide quality recreational opportunities for citizens of all ages and abilities.
To provide access to quality of life services, which address the needs and challenges of residents of low-income and local neighbourhoods.
To deliver educational opportunities which support the personal growth of residents.
To foster community engagement.
To maintain fiscally responsible and sustainable operations.