Glebe Centre Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Abbotsford Program Gives Needed Support to Seniors

By: Julie Ireton

The hard, crusty February snow was much more than senior Margaret Pick could handle with her own shovel. She turned to the Glebe Centre and its community support programs at Abbotsford to help her out.

Now she has a young man, vetted by the centre, who comes and shovels her steps after a snowfall.  But she didn’t stop there.

“I have a housekeeper,” said Pick. “She’s just a sweetheart and the centre also helps me find a gardener in the summertime.”2017_March-Article-glebe-IMAGE.jpg

The community support programs allow seniors like Margaret to stay in their own homes longer, with little assistance. She pays for the cleaning, shovelling and gardening, but all the service providers are cleared and recommended by Abbotsford staff.

“I pay them individually for what they do,” said Pick. “It’s not astronomical and they’re very accommodating, cheerful and nice.”

Other seniors, including Zandra Strickland welcomes a check-in call every morning. Strickland lives by herself and she says it’s a comfort to know someone will give her a ring to see how she’s doing.

“Brian calls me every day to see if I’m still standing or not,” laughed Strickland. “He’s a sweetheart. I’ve never met him, but he’s very nice.”

Strickland who’ll be 81 on her next birthday also has two daughters who check on her, but she says they’re also busy with their work and lives.

Like Pick, Strickland has her driveway cleared thanks to the community support program as well as house cleaning.

“I have to go downstairs for the laundry and my family doesn’t want me to do that anymore. So the housekeeper comes twice a month,” said Strickland who’s had a hip replacement, cancer and other health issues.

Abbotsford’s Day Away program also helps seniors living with dementia.

Shirley Kingston who is 90 never misses her day away at Abbotsford where the staff leads the group in songs, games, discussion and sometimes crafts.

“She thinks it’s wonderful. She loves it there. Everyone is so kind and friendly,” said Kathryn Kingston.

Before dementia, Kingston said her mother was outgoing and able to leave the house by herself, but now she’s not able to get out as much.

“Day Away allows her to be social again, have some friends in the same situation. It really lifts her mood,” said Kingston.

She also knows her mother is safe. In January, Shirley became weak and Abbotsford staff were quick to call an ambulance. At the hospital, the doctor realized she had low hemoglobin.

“They caught the problem and acted right away,” said Kingston.

To find out more about the Community Support Programs offered at Abbotsford and how to access them contact reception at 613-230-5730.

Abbotsford is your community support centre for Adults 55+.  We are the community programs of The Glebe Centre Inc., a charitable, not-for-profit, organization which includes a 254 bed long term care home.  Find out more about our services by dropping by 950 Bank Street (the old stone house) Mon- Fri 9-4 pm, telephoning 613-230-5730 or by checking out all of The Glebe Centre facilities and community programs on our website www.glebecentre.ca