November 26, 2020
SENIOR SECTOR NEWS
NEW COVID-19 RESTRICTIONS FOR ALBERTA
Government of Alberta
On Tuesday, November 24th, the Government of Alberta declared a state of public health emergency and announced new restrictions to help fight the spread of COVID-19. They include: 

  • Mandatory masks for indoor workplaces (Edmonton and Calgary areas only) 
  • No indoor social gatherings in any setting 
  • Outdoor gatherings limited to 10 people 
  • People who live alone may have two “close contacts” (must be one another’s close contacts) 
  • 10-person limit at weddings and funerals 
  • No festivals or events allowed

There are also restrictions pertaining to businesses, places of worship, and schools. The Government says the measures will be in effect for three weeks and re-evaluated after that. 

NATIONAL INSTITUTE ON AGEING LAUNCHES NEW MyCOVIDVisitRisk WEB TOOL
Ryerson University National Institute on Ageing
Free
This web tool was created to help people better understand the factors that affect the risk of visiting with others on both getting and dying from COVID-19. Using the best available scientific evidence and the input of leading experts in infectious diseases and epidemiology, MyCOVIDVisitRisk has been designed to help people of different ages and states of health figure out how to visit with others more safely during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

SENIORS BECOMING CAREGIVERS THEMSELVES
Statistics Canada and The Daily
Data from across Canada is providing new insight into the experiences of Canadians age 65+ who are caregivers themselves. An article in The Daily sums up the findings, including:  

nearly one-quarter of Canadians aged 65 years and older consider themselves caregivers 

senior caregivers' activities are often divided along gender lines 

more than one-quarter of senior caregivers reported their own overall health had suffered because of their caregiving duties 

The data was collected as part of the 2018 General Social Survey on Caregiving and Care Receiving. While it does not include COVID-19 related data, the results highlight the many challenges senior caregivers already faced prior to the pandemic. 

More seniors sector news
(links to the ESCC News for Seniors Organizations web page)
GRANTS & AWARDS
COMMUNITY GRANT
Edmonton Community Foundation
Deadline: Dec. 1, 2020
The Edmonton Community Foundation’s Community Grants program provinces financial support to charitable organizations in the greater Edmonton area. Grants up to $80,000 may be awarded, depending on the organization’s eligibility. The funding supports a wide range of sectors, community needs, organizational needs, and types of projects and programs. 

More awards and funding news (links to the ESCC News for Seniors Organizations and Funding Options web pages)
RESOURCES
COVCARES SURVEY
University of Alberta and University of Waterloo 
Free  
A team made up of researchers from the University of Alberta and University of Waterloo is looking to speak with Designated Supportive Living Homes in Alberta and loved ones of residents to study the impact of COVID-19 and related restrictions. The main benefits of this study will be (a) an improved understanding of the pandemic’s impact on family/friend caregivers of older adults living in Designated Supportive Living Homes and (b) evidence to help guide Designated Supportive Living Home policies and practices surrounding the involvement of family/friend caregivers in future similar scenarios. 

CALL FOR A COORDINATED FEDERAL SENIORS' CARE STRATEGY
The Council of Canadians
The Council of Canadians is calling on the federal government to bring homes into public hands, provide a coordinated seniors' care strategy to be implemented in all provinces and territories, and ensure all long-term care workers have all the support, tools and equipment they need. An online petition is currently circulating related to the federal government’s actions surrounding COVID-19 and long-term care homes. 

TRACKING THE TRENDS 2020
Edmonton Social Planning Council
Now available
The annual Tracking the Trends report compiles data from seven categories to provide a clearer picture of the social changes taking place in Edmonton and offer a comprehensive understanding of those persons in the population that are disadvantaged or marginalized. Data on COVID-19 is not captured in the 2020 edition, but will be seen in future Tracking the Trends.

THE OFFICE OF THE SENIORS ADVOCATE IN ALBERTA
Canadian Association of Retired Persons (CARP)
At the end of 2019, the provincial government abolished the role of the Seniors Advocate, consolidating the office’s responsibilities with those of the Health Advocate. Many seniors organizations spoke out about the implications. One of the advocacy efforts that has emerged comes from the Calgary Chapter of CARP in the form of a letter writing campaign.


More resources for sector staff
(links to the ESCC Resources web page)
LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
THE STATE OF THE SECTOR: A LOOK AHEAD TO 2021
Imagine Canada and CharityVillage
Dec. 3, 11 a.m.-12 p.m. 
Free 
2020 was likely the year we won't forget for a long time. From the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic and WE Charity controversy, to the soul searching that has taken place related to systemic racism, the nation's charities and nonprofits have been in 'pivot overdrive'. In this session, Imagine Canada will facilitate a panel discussion to address key implications from 2020 and look ahead to the coming year to provide sector leaders with insights that they can use when building their upcoming plans. Note this webinar is limited to the first 1,000 participants. Registration is first come, first served. If you cannot attend the webinar, please register anyway and the full presentation will be sent to you after the event. 

COMPASSION FATIGUE TRAINING
CORE Alberta Elder Abuse Group and the Alberta Elder Abuse Awareness Council 
Dec. 10, 1:30-3:30 p.m. 
Online 
Free 
Compassion Fatigue is often called the "cost of caring". Providing support for older adults experiencing elder abuse or trauma can take its toll on caregivers and service providers. In this session, service providers will learn about how recognize the symptoms/effects of compassion fatigue in themselves and their co-workers; understand the risk factors and personal/systemic barriers in receiving help; and, create a personal self-care plan that includes personal resiliency-building skills and steps to improving workplace mental health. 

PEARLS OF WISDOM WITH HARRIET TINKA
National Council of Jewish Women of Canada and Jewish Family Services Edmonton 
Dec. 7, 7:30–9:00 p.m. 
Online (Zoom) 
Free 
Join JFS Edmonton therapist Anna Jongeleen for a Zoom-hosted evening of personal enrichment and growth with domestic abuse survivor and entrepreneur, Harriet Tinka. Tinka is the founder of EmpoweredMe, whose mission is to “inspire, educate, empower, value and support all individuals to have a sense of purpose and live to their full potential.” Pre-registration is required.  


More learning opportunities for staff/volunteers in the seniors sector (links to the ESCC Learning Opportunities web page)
NEWS FOR SENIORS
THE SHARED MIC PODCAST: LISTEN TO INTERGENERATIONAL CONVERSATIONS
Age Friendly Edmonton 
Free 
Episode four of The Shared Mic’s second season is available to stream now! The Shared Mic is an intergenerational initiative intended to get Edmontonians of diverse backgrounds and generations talking. This most recent episode brings together Maryanne Doherty and Jennifer Foote, both faculty members from the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Education. With Maryanne in the role of Associate Dean and Jennifer acting as Assistant Professor, both women are at distinct stages in their careers. As the conversation unfolds, they discover they have much in common—curiosity and a passion for making a difference through their research. You can listen to their conversation and other riveting local discussions at thesharedmic.blubrry.net.  

HOLIDAY PHONE PROGRAMMING
Alberta Seniors’ Centre Without Walls  
Ongoing 
Free 
December is almost upon us and Seniors’ Centre Without Walls has a great new roster of phone programming to keep you entertained and social throughout this festive season. Seasonal activities, including ‘Name that Tune: Holiday Edition’ and a reading of ‘A Christmas Carol’ offer some great holiday entertainment options. Of course, the program continues to offer old favourites like ‘Armchair Travels’, ‘Did You Know?’, ‘BINGO’, ‘Coffee Chats’ and much more. For a full selection of December programming, view the calendar.  

NEW ACTIVITIES AND PROGRAMS FOR SENIORS
Twin Brooks Community League Seniors Innovation Fund
Ongoing  
Online 
Check out these new and exciting online programs for seniors, including singing and dancing sessions using ‘Zoom.’ Additionally, the league is providing an information service, ‘Live Well During COVID-19', to share information for seniors in need, including mental health counselling, personal protective equipment (masks, gloves, sanitizer), and pick-up/delivery/driving services. Contact Maggie at wmengzhe@hotmail.com for more information. You can learn more about current program offerings on the Twin Brooks website.  

  • Music is Life: Thursdays, 7-8 p.m.
  • Dancing & Exercise: Tuesdays, 7:15pm

DIY: MINI MOCCASIN CHRISTMAS ORNAMENT CRAFT
Moonstone Creation 
Ongoing 
$20 (+$5 shipping fee for craft materials) 
Learn how to craft an adorable pair of beaded mini moccasins to adorn your Christmas tree this holiday season. The folks from Moonstone Creation are offering online Indigenous crafting tutorials, so you can get crafty without leaving home. Learn from Amy Willier, a Cree First Nations woman who has mastered ancient Indigenous artforms, such as tanning hides and creating beautiful beadwork. Simply register online and you will be mailed a bundle of crafting supplies for the project and detailed instructions, including a step-by-step video tutorial. Additional workshops include how to make baby moccasins and beaded feathers.


BYOBeads BEADING CIRCLE
East End Arts and Native Women in the Arts 
Alternating Thursdays (next session: Dec. 3) 
Online
Free to participate (you must have your own supplies) 
BYOBeads is an intimate opportunity for traditional bead artists, hobby-beaders just learning their craft, experts, Elders, and enthusiasts to gather and work together on current project(s), share skills, and show off the beautiful things they’ve been working on! This Indigenous-centered online workspace assumes some level of prior experience. If you would like to learn how to bead, check out virtual workshops like the ones offered by Moonstone Creation or organizations like the Archeological Society of Alberta. The next BYOBeads circle is a Holiday Beading Extravaganza and will take place on December 3. 
 

WILLS AND ESTATE PLANNING INFORMATION
Edmonton Community Foundation 
Online 
Free 
The Edmonton Community Foundation has now posted recordings of sessions from this year’s Wills Week, which was held in October. The free presentations help Edmonton and area residents learn the value of creating and maintaining an up-to-date will.

SUPPORTING SENIORS IN ACCESSING INCOME SUPPORTS AND FINANCIAL COACHING
Indo-Canadian Women’s Association 
Ongoing 
Free 
The Indo-Canadian Women’s Association is providing services to help seniors access income support and financial coaching through subsidized and cost-free community resources. Seniors who are newcomers, permanent residency card holders, and/or self-identify as being low income may benefit from this program. For more information contact Krishna Kumari Vaishnav at krishna.icwa.edmonton@gmail.com or 780-707-9696. 
NEW ACTIVITIES AT SHAAMA
The Shaama Centre for Seniors and Women  
Ongoing 
Free 
Since the lockdown began, the Shaama Centre has offered an abundance of exciting social meetings, activities, and classes on Zoom. The centre continues to expand on its online programming repertoire. Current online programs include:  

  • Chair Yoga: Mondays, 11 a.m.-12 p.m.  
  • Crafts and Quizzes: Tuesdays, 12-1:30 p.m.  
  • Exercise Class: Wednesdays, 11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.  
  • Cooking Class: Wednesdays, 12:30-2 p.m.  
  • Functional English Class: Thursdays, 12-1 p.m.  
  • Painting: Thursdays, 3-4:30 p.m.  
  • Chai and Chat: Fridays, 2-3 p.m. 

For more information, call 780-465-2992 or email light@shaama.ca.  

More news and events for seniors
(links to the ESCC News and Events for Seniors web page)
VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
NO SENIOR FORGOTTEN
Edmonton Meals on Wheels  
Let a local senior know you’re thinking about them this holiday season with Edmonton Meals on Wheels’ No Senior Forgotten campaign. Your $25 donation will be used to buy a delicious turkey dinner delivered to all Meals on Wheels’ clients on Christmas Day. Additionally, a holiday gift drive is currently underway to collect gifts to accompany the turkey dinners. 

STOCKING STUFFERS FOR SENIORS
London Drugs
Spread a little joy! This campaign has a mission to bring more holiday cheer to seniors across the country. Donated items don’t need to be purchased from a London Drugs store—any new, non-gift wrapped item is accepted. London Drugs has COVID-19 precautions in place to ensure everyone’s safety. You can learn more about how to participate in this year’s Stocking Stuffers for Seniors campaign on the London Drugs website. 

(links to the Volunteer and Work Opportunities web page)
MORE INFORMATION
Link Letter includes new items biweekly. If you're looking for content that was included in a previous issue of Link Letter, refer to the ESCC website:



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