April 30, 2020
Seniors Sector News

CBSS INITIATIVE RELEASES REPORT DETAILING CONSULTATIONS TO BUILD A COORDINATED SECTOR 
Edmonton Seniors Coordinating Council, Sage, carya and Age-Friendly Calgary 
 
In the fall of 2019, over 180 representatives from many different seniors serving organizations participated in more than 25 conversations across Alberta. The sessions were hosted with a goal of developing an integrated community-based senior serving (CBSS) sector in Alberta. 
 
The sessions resulted in a resounding consensus: community-based seniors serving organizations see the value in working collectively and systematically to support the healthy aging of seniors in Alberta. A full report of what we heard is included here for your review.
 
If you have any questions about the report or the CBSS initiative, contact one of the CBSS coordinating members:
More seniors sector news
(links to the ESCC News for Seniors Organizations web page)
Grants and Awards
ALBERTA NORTHERN LIGHTS VOLUNTEER RECOGNITION PROGRAM
Government of Alberta

The volunteers in our communities deserve our gratitude now more then ever. The Alberta Northern Lights Volunteer Program gives them the recognition they deserve.

Individuals and groups from across the province can be nominated for the program if they:
  • contribute unpaid service to the community through formal or informal volunteering
  • demonstrate community spirit
  • serve as a role model for others in their community
More awards and funding news  (links to the ESCC News for Seniors Organizations and Funding Options web pages)
Resources
COVID-19 FACT SHEET: SUPPORT FOR THE NONPROFIT/VOLUNTARY SECTOR
Government of Alberta

A new fact sheet with information specifically for nonprofits and voluntary organizations is available. The resource includes new information from the Government of Alberta, including WCB premium deferral information for employers and an update about expanding the use of charitable gaming proceeds by the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission (AGLC). The document also provides a comprehensive listing of supports and services that had been announced previously. 
COVID-19 Q AND A
Government  of Alberta, Ministry of Seniors and Housing

The Ministry of Seniors and Housing previously released a Q and A containing information specifically for housing providers and seniors. This document has been updated since its original release and the new version is available for download. Note this document is not available on the Government of Alberta website for search engine optimization reasons. The up-to-date document is posted on the Edmonton Seniors Coordinating COVID-19 information page
GUIDELINES FOR COVID-19 OUTBREAK PREVENTION, CONTROL AND MANAGEMENT IN CONGREGATE LIVING SITES
Alberta Health Services

This helpful document provides the best practices for preventing and controlling outbreaks in congregate living settings. In the context of this document, "congregate" refers to settings where residents/clients receive care and/or services in a communal environment with other residents/clients.
COVID-19 PUBLIC HEALTH RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ENVIRONMENTAL CLEANING OF PUBLIC FACILITIES
Alberta Health Services

Maintaining a clean environment is a key prevention measure to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. This document provides an at-a-glance overview of cleaning tips for public environments. Current recommendations include an increase in daily cleaning of common areas and surfaces, including door knobs, light switches, staff rooms, desktops, washrooms, and other "high touch" surfaces.  
OLDER ADULTS & ISOLATION DURING COVID-19
Mental Health America

Being an older adult comes with unique challenges. Many face dramatic changes in their relationships and employment, grief over the loss of loved ones, and changes in their physical health. During COVID-19, these concerns can be magnified. This webinar recording discusses the strengths and weaknesses of traditional behavioral health services in meeting the needs of this population, particularly around social isolation. It also demonstrates how peer support and peer-delivered services can make an impact on seniors' wellbeing and sense of connection.
FUNDRAISING IN A TIME OF CRISIS
The Rainmaker Fundraising Podcast

This podcast episode addresses whether nonprofits should stop fundraising because of COVID-19, what the impact of pulling back or delaying will be, and how your organization can be successful in spite of this global crisis. The episode talks about specific tactics and strategies you can leverage right now to stay top of mind with your donors and make sure that your cause is positioned for success in a crisis.
COVID-19 QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
The University  of Calgary 

The University of Calgary brought together a panel of experts to answer your pressing COVID-19 questions, like: where exactly did COVID-19 come from, and what does this mean for other viruses? What public health measures are being taken in response to COVID-19, and why is the global impact of this particular virus so big? Learn more in this informative webinar recording
More resources for sector staff
(links to the ESCC Resources web page)
Learning Opportunities
LONELINESS AND ISOLATION IN OLDER ADULTS DURING THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC
Older Adult Behavioural Health Initiative
May 7, 2 - 3 p.m. (Pacific)
Free
 
For older adults, staying social during COVID-19 while maintaining a safe physical distance is vital. However, physical distancing does not mean we have to be disconnected. This webinar will demonstrate the impacts of loneliness and isolation, major risk factors, and what we can do to address the issue to help seniors stay connected. 
RAISING THE BAR ON PARTNERING
Calgary Chamber of Voluntary Organizations (CCVO) 
May 14, 12 - 12:45 p.m. (Mountain) 
Free
 
Operating at a reduced capacity is an ongoing struggle faced by nonprofits the world over. Because of this, powerful partnerships between organizations are necessary to create social change. Partnerships can be highly rewarding by providing new and ground-breaking solutions to existing problems and adding value to partners through increased credibility, access to new resources, enhanced skills and wider influence on policy. This webinar will address how to build effective partnerships for lasting impact and meaningful improvements in communities. 
TOOLS EVERY NONPROFIT NEEDS TO SIMPLIFY THEIR LIFE
Firespring
May 21, 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. (Central)
Free

The best tools breathe life into your nonprofit's online presence. The question is which ones do you really need? Evernote? DropBox? Google Alerts? There's so much coming at you, it can feel like you're drinking through a firehose. This webinar will introduce you to the tools you need to build an effective online presence.
More learning opportunities for staff/volunteers in the seniors sector  (links to the ESCC Learning Opportunities web page)
News and Events for Seniors
ONLINE FITNESS CLASSES FOR SENIORS
Mill Woods Seniors Association 

We've heard there's still room in the following fitness classes at MWSA. Get fit while staying safe at home. To register for either class, email Karen at  karen@mwsac.ca with the name of your preferred class as the email subject line. 
  • Soft Pilates: May 2 - June 27, Saturdays, 9 - 10:30 a.m. 
  • Stretch & Release: May 2 - June 27, Saturdays, 10:45 - 11:45 a.m.  
ONLINE CLASSES FOR SENIORS
Westend Seniors Activity Centre

Whatever your interests, WSAC has an online class for you. Online activities are a great way to stay connected during the pandemic. From yoga to clogging and everything in between, these online options are sure to keep you busy. Current class offerings include:
  • Line Dancing
  • Clogging
  • Chair Yoga
  • Yoga for Stress and Anxiety
  • Total Fitness for Active Agers
  • Nutrition Series on Fiber, Bone Health and Heart Healthy Eating
  • Essentrics
  • Mindful Wellness Courses
  • Sleep Yoga
  • Spanish
  • Gentle Yoga
Check out WSAC's online registration portal for class dates and registration information. A new technology series is currently being developed, so check back soon for details. Non-members are welcome to register by emailing programs@weseniors.ca.
GENTLE MOVEMENT @ HOME
Pain BC
Various dates and times
Free

This online gentle movement and relaxation program is designed to help people with persistent pain learn to feel safe to move again. Topics include breath awareness and regulation, body tension regulation, and movement and relaxation techniques in both seated and standing positions. Each class is approximately 50 - 65 minutes in duration.
NEW FAMILY CAREGIVER WORKSHOPS
Norquest College
Various dates, 9 - 11 a.m.
$35 per workshop 

Did you know informal caregivers provide 80 per cent of caregiving required by older adults in the community? Caregiving can be taxing but Norquest College is offering online training to make it easier. In addition to their regular offerings, the college is providing a selection of new workshops this spring. Upcoming workshops include:
For more information about these courses, visit  www.norquest.ca/family-caregiver.
MAY TELEPHONE PROGRAMS FOR SENIORS
Seniors' Centre Without Walls 
Free

Want to socialize and make new friends during the pandemic? The good news is, you can do this safely from home with telephone programming from Seniors' Centre Without Walls. There are some great programs coming up!  History buffs will enjoy learning about Indigenous Canadian history in "Indigenous Canada" and hearing how Maritime inventions shaped the world in "Nova Scotian Inventions & Innovations". Want to have a dinner party but can't have company because of COVID-19? Join the virtual dinner party, "Come Dine with Us". Musically-inclined folks will enjoy belting out old favourites during the "Sing-a-Long and Live Music Night". These offerings are just a sneak peak of all available programs. Reference SCWW's May announcement and  schedule for full details. 
ONLINE COOKING CLASSES
Get Cooking Edmonton
Various dates and times available
$0-25 per class

Beef up your culinary chops with online cooking classes. This local company is bringing learning opportunities straight to your kitchen. Want to learn how to whip up pavlova? How about a fragrant dish of butter chicken? Get ready to don your chef's hat, roll up your sleeves, and learn! Go to getcookingedmonton.com for class information, including schedule.  
STORY CALLS PROGRAM EXTENDED TO MAY 10
Storytelling Alberta

Seniors interested in hearing an engaging 5-minute story from a talented storyteller are encouraged to call Storytelling Alberta. The program has been extended to run until May 10. To participate, simply complete the online request form. If you don't have access to a computer, call Doreen Vanderstoop at 403-816-6002 with your name, phone number, date/time preference and the type of story you'd like to hear (personal story/folktale/myth/historical story/fable/fairy tale/teller's choice). 
GET BOOKS, BOARD GAMES, AND PUZZLES DELIVERED!
Various local businesses

Local Edmonton businesses are offering delivery of entertainment options, such as books board games, and puzzles when you make a purchase from their shop.
  • Glass Book Shop: Free book delivery to homes in Edmonton, Sherwood Park, and St. Albert. Place your order online, then kick back and relax while you wait for the books to be delivered to your door. 
  • Audrey's Books: Free delivery for orders over $50. $5 fee for orders under $50. Delivery in Edmonton, Sherwood Park and St. Albert. Curbside pickup is also available. 
  • Table Top Cafe: Free delivery for board games/puzzles/food orders over $50, 7 days a week. Call 780-905-3577 for details. Curbside pickup is also available.
WATCH SHAKESPEARE ONLINE
Stratford Festival 

Watch the epic tragedies of famed wordsmith, William Shakespeare, leap off the page and come to life in recorded performances by the Stratford Festival. Currently, the company is streaming "King Lear" (April 23 - May 14). Upcoming recordings include "Coriolanus" (coming April 30) and "Macbeth" (coming May 7). 
COVID-19 RESOURCES
Edmonton Social Planning Council

The resources on this page are intended to provide everyone with access to important resources. The resources listed cover a wide range of topics for a broad section of our population. The intent is to inform as many people as possible and help them understand their options, available support, and tools to continue to isolate, social distance, remain in quarantine, or access health care support.
More  news and events for seniors
(links to the ESCC News and Events for Seniors web page)
Volunteer/Work Opportunities for Seniors
FIND VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES IN ALBERTA THROUGH ALBERTACARESCONNECTOR
VolunteerConnector and the Government of Alberta

Find volunteer opportunities in Alberta through AlbertaCaresConnector
VolunteerConnector and the Government of Alberta
Albertans seeking to lend their skills and talents during the pandemic can find opportunities on AlbertaCaresConnector. Whether your skills include sewing to make face masks, writing to brighten a senior's day, or anything in between, this helpful volunteer website can connect you with opportunities to make a difference during COVID-19.
(links to the Volunteer and Work Opportunities web page)
MORE INFORMATION

Link Letter includes new items each week.  If you're looking for content that was included in a previous issue of Link Letter, refer to the ESCC website:

Submissions for Link Letter can be sent to memberservices@seniorscouncil.net.  Review our submission guidelines for more information.