The 2018 Healthy Canadians Grants support community-based programs focused on seniors’ wellness.
The recipients are:
- Kennebecasis Valley Oasis Youth Centre: Generations Walking Together Project — The centre is bridging the generation gap by matching young people with seniors. Once a week, pairs go for a short walk with the help of walking poles. Both young and old benefit from the exercise, social interaction and sharing of knowledge and life experience. The project helps seniors stay vibrant, healthy and active in their communities.
- Parrainage Civique de Vaudreuil-Soulanges: Les sorteux! — The organization is expanding the recreational activities it offers to seniors with limited independence, helping them integrate into community life. Regular outings into the city break seniors’ isolation, encourage physical activity and provide a chance for seniors to learn how to use regional buses to get around. In addition, art therapy workshops help participants break their isolation and express their feelings through art.
- Pilgrims Hospice Society: Care for Seniors with Dementia — The hospice is enhancing its respite day program for seniors. The new program provides therapeutic support using games, art, dance and music to improve seniors’ moods and stimulate memories. At the same time, caregiver relief is provided as family members can relax knowing their loved ones are in good hands. Extra training in dementia care is also being provided to staff and volunteers.
- SPEC Association: Kinesthetic Arts Program — Along with the local community arts council, the association is getting seniors moving in a creative way to reduce isolation, improve quality of life and well-being. Seniors participate in daily activities focused on healthy movement and exploration of art expression, where they enjoy moving their bodies to create art.
- St. Ann’s Bay Community Health Group: The Reassurance Program — The group is offering a check-in system for seniors who may be socially isolated to make sure they are safe in their homes. Seniors register online and receive visits from community members. They can also request rides to and from appointments, as well as trips into town and to community events. Part of this program is time banking, which allows seniors to receive one hour of service for each hour they volunteer. These hours can also be donated to another senior in need.
- St. Paul’s United Church: Daybreak Program — This program offers friendship, food and exercise to seniors living in the rural community, as well as caregiver relief, by providing a safe space. Programming focuses on therapeutic cognitive activities and connections with the local community, such as guest speakers and student volunteers. Daybreak is run by volunteer seniors who like making a difference in their communities.
- The St. James Assiniboia 55+ Centre: Oral Health Clinic for Low Income Seniors — The community centre is bringing dental clinics directly to low income seniors in their homes. Dental students team up with a mobile clinic to offer cleanings, fillings and other oral health care, to patients who don’t usually have access to these services.
- St. John Ambulance Council for NS/PEI: Therapy Dog Program PEI Expansion — The organization is adding 30 new therapy dog teams that will visit long-term care facilities. The animals and their owners will provide seniors with greater social engagement, stress reduction and distraction from pain.
- West Niagara Palliative Care Services: Accessible Transportation Services — This program is filling a void in its small rural community, with no public transit, though a partnership with Driving Miss Daisy. Seniors can use this accessible transportation service, free of charge, to bring them to drop-in and bereavement programs, and medical appointments.
- DIVERSEcity Community Resources Society: Intergenerational Cooking and Nutrition Project — The society is training 20 newcomer seniors to run community kitchens. The seniors teach other newcomer seniors and young people how to cook affordable and nutritious meals from their countries of origin, including South Asia, Latin America and China. The community kitchens will be delivered in the newcomers’ first languages and will include nutritional sessions led by certified Food Safe instructors and dieticians.
- Ocean View Continuing Care Centre: BikeAround — The centre is purchasing a technology that combines a stationary bike with Google Street View. Seniors take virtual tours of familiar streets and sites from towns and cities around the world. They share their experience with family, friends and youth volunteers who help them use the technology.
- Saskatoon Council on Aging Inc.: Saskatchewan Globe Walkers: Walking Their Way to Better Health — During the winter months, older adults join teams that track their physical activity, with half an hour of exercise equalling one mile. All forms of exercise count. The teams motivate one another to see how many times they can walk around the globe — on paper — and keep each other active and social throughout the winter months.
- Mount Pleasant Neighbourhood House: Nourishing our Seniors at Home — The neighbourhood house is creating a small social enterprise to tackle two issues facing seniors. The program employs seniors who need extra income and teaches them to prepare nutritious soups. They hand-deliver these meals to other seniors who have trouble shopping and preparing their own food. The deliveries encourage friendly visits between the seniors, reducing isolation.
The CMA President’s Grant is an additional grant provided to a charity in the CMA president's home province or territory. This year’s recipient is:
- Sercovie: Vacuum-packed Meal Service for Seniors — The seniors centre, run by volunteer retirees, is feeding more seniors in need by using innovative food packaging. Purchasing new equipment and technology will allow Sercovie to deliver vacuum-packed meals to a greater number of its 3,500 clients. A week’s supply of meals is delivered at a time and stay fresh for seven days.