By: Karen Anne Blakely
As we work towards building community immunity, Abbotsford House is looking forward to a summer of online and telephone programs for older adults aged 55 plus with a shift toward in-person programs when it is safe to do so. For the summer programs, see what is on offer on our website www.glebecentre.ca under community programs. For new members, we are now offering a prorated membership fee of $25 for the rest of the year. All of our summer classes will be virtual or on the telephone. We hope you enjoy visits to the gardens surrounding Abbotsford House on sunny days and have a rest on our commemorative metal bench as it is in the shade after 1 pm. We continue to stock the bookcase with books and puzzles so come have a look to find the best summer read. Call Elleni Adane, our new receptionist, at your convenience to pay for the books and puzzles. We have booklets on Cannabis and Older Adults published by Active Aging Canada for you take at no cost.
Our Community Support Services continue throughout the summer. If seniors or adults with disabilities require assistance getting to medical appointments or vaccine clinics, call and register with our transportation coordinator, Jane Stallabrass. Currently our paid drivers, Tim and Terry Dale are driving seniors to where they need to be in our air-conditioned Pro Master van.
Whatever you might require assistance with to remain at home safely, we will work with you to find solutions. Kirsten O’Brien helps seniors find home help, gardening help, and referrals for professionals and trades people. If you have need groceries, let us know, as we have a new grant to help low-income seniors access food hampers.
Nick Bermudez is assisting seniors to acquire tablets so they may get connected to programs, family and friends, perhaps a learn game, check email or get a Facebook account. On Facebook, you can like our Abbotsford and Glebe Centre pages to get regular updates about what is happening and enjoy photography of Abbotsford’s blossoming plants.
Janet Kuntz is offering support to caregivers on Zoom and sends out weekly emails with resources and other information to help those caring for loved ones at home or have a loved one living in long term care.
Cassandra Ford, Shirley Lee and Jen Dare, our dedicated and skilled Program Facilitators continue to provide Zoom and telephone programs for those living with dementia and are being cared for at home. They facilitate activities, fitness and engage in interesting discussion topics to keep seniors and caregivers involved and entertained. Porch and driveway visits at a safe distance have resumed and they are enjoying the pleasure of each other’s company after a long break.
Kirsten O’Brien and Jane Stallabrass with the help of a few wonderful long-time volunteers continue the Luncheon Club on the Seniors Centre Without Walls, telephone conferencing platform. Participants only need their telephones to connect with their friends, exchange updates on how everyone is doing and groan together at Kirsten’s jokes.
Later in the summer when second doses of the vaccine are in community members and after the allotted waiting period has occurred, we will be keen to present our re-opening plans. We hope to offer some fitness classes in larger venues and smaller class sizes so seniors can exercise with generous space between each person. We will need to get accustomed to being indoors with others not in our household. Look for a mix of in person and Zoom programming in September. We look forward to communicating our plans to reopen Abbotsford House soon.
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 telephoning us: Mon-Fri 8:30 am – 4:30 pm at 613-230-5730 or by checking out all of The Glebe Centre facilities and Abbotsford Community Programs on our website www.glebecentre.ca