Find out what`s going on with
various ESCC projects

ESCC E-Update

                      May 24, 2013
Greetings ESCC Followers.

Our Annual Report for 2012 is now available. It provides an overview of the many projects and initiatives we worked on in 2012 and provides information about current directions. If you would like a copy of this please contact

Our Annual General Meeting was attended by over half of our member organizations and it provided a good opportunity to network and hear about our work. On June 26th we will be hosting a Summer Conversation Café to be held at Central Lions Senior Centre in the afternoon. If you are a board member of one of our member organizations, this is another excellent opportunity to meet other boards and exchange information that can be helpful. This year we will be including members of special committees i.e. nominating committees, fundraising committees etc., to register. This event organizes tables for presidents, tables for treasurers, and other positions to allow there to be focused conversations.

Please contact Rich to find out
how to register for this free event.

Age Friendly Edmonton's is an initiative to model respect and to support the safety, diversity, well-being and inclusion of seniors in our communities. The City and the ESCC are co-leading the implementation of the Vision for an Age-Friendly Edmonton Action Plan. Nine working groups have been meeting and prioritizing actions for 2013 and beyond.
  1. Community Support Services
  2. Health Services
  3. Communication and Information
  4. Social and Recreational Participation
  5. Transportation
  6. Respect and Social Inclusion
  7. Civic Participation, Volunteerism and Employment
  8. Housing
  9. Outdoor Spaces and Buildings
Their action plans will be presented as information to the City of Edmonton's Community Services Committee at the June 11 meeting. 2013 work will include raising awareness of the initiative, as well as projects designed to address barriers identified by seniors.  City Council approved a budget for this work through the City of Edmonton's Community Services Department.

Some projects are already underway, such as a community pilot site in west Edmonton where the Westend Seniors Activity Centre will work with businesses and community organizations to increase their awareness of seniors' needs and help businesses be more age-friendly. Mayor Mandel spoke with the leaders of 14 Business Revitalization Zones (BRZ) May 24 to encourage them to work with seniors in their areas and come up with ways to make improvements to meet their needs. The zones can apply for some funding to undertake work in 2013 and 2014. Two BRZ's will be chosen as pilots for each year. Expect to see a lot more mention of Age-Friendly as projects unfold from the various working groups!
Door-Through-Door Seniors Assisted Transportation Project

Three volunteer-driving organizations (Seniors Assisted Transportation Society; Lifestyle Helping Hands Seniors Association; Society of Seniors Caring About Seniors) send one staff and board member to bi-weekly coordinating committee meetings facilitated by Rosalie Gelderman (ESCC) and Ingrid Hoogenboom (City-Seniors Team). The committee is well into its one-year work plan to develop/implement a shared service model for coordinated, city-wide coverage.
To date they have established an evaluation framework to track learnings. They have compared different procedures for membership registration, volunteer management, ride bookings, reports/statistics, referral process, and training. They have agreed on common ride destination categories to enable the use of a common registration form for collecting data. They have compared their different approaches to fees and agreed on a standard fee. They have made progress on a system that could eliminate the need for a physical ticket for a ride and they've begun to work on a system for a subsidy pool. They are close to agreeing on a common software program and are soon putting out a request for proposals for  joint branding/marketing of the service. This work builds on existing strengths and enhances the capacity for organizations to offer a system of services.

   Door-Through-Door Assisted Transportation for      
   Seniors is intended for seniors who have mobility
   challenges, are low income and have other special needs that require a
   higher level of service than is available through
   public transportation.

Core Services for Supporting Seniors to Age in Place
On May 15th ESCC member agencies gathered to hear updates from core service working groups. For the last several months three working groups have been looking for ways to improve coordination in three priority areas: Snow Removal; Health Promotion; and Telephone Line for Information and Referral. The goals they were working towards were:
Ensure Access To Snow Removal And Yard Maintenance
Seniors are able to access snow removal services and/or yard maintenance services in a timely manner as required.
Health Promotion and Injury-Disease Prevention
Seniors have the information and awareness they need to make informed choices to maintain their health and well-being.
Telephone Line (answered by a person) Information and Referral
Seniors are able to obtain timely and meaningful information and referrals through a telephone and referral line.

Working Groups include seniors as well as representatives from ESCC member organizations and representatives from Alberta Health Services, City of Edmonton, the Support Network, and the United Way.

The Snow Removal Working Group came up with two models of service for ESCC member organizations to consider. One model proposed that the city be divided into five districts and each district would have one existing organization (a senior centre or senior service organization) that would locate and provide seniors with four types of snow service depending on their means: paid individuals; paid private contractors; community groups that would be paid for service; and volunteers for seniors with special needs.  The other model built in one point of access for all seniors in Edmonton while still having each district locate their local resources for snow removal (paid individuals, paid private contractors and community groups). This model would maintain a registry of options (with help of districts) and if the senior didn't have the means to pay for service then the district agency would work with the senior to find more options. The working group is looking at feedback received from ESCC members and will decide next steps.

The Health Promotion Working Group renamed themselves Healthy Aging and they came up with a way to coordinate health and wellness information to enable seniors to obtain education, knowledge and skills to support their own health. They will be coordinating promotion of a number of identified speakers which senior organizations and community groups can access for free to come and put on various sessions on topics which have been identified as priorities by seniors.

The Telephone Line Working Group identified the Support Network and its existing 211 service as the best option to deliver the key functions needed for an effective seniors information and referral line. Work will soon begin to enhance the service the operators can provide when a senior calls. The hope is that this will be completed and ready to promote later in the fall of 2013. 

Outreach Project
Actions such as the development of a common assessment tool are well under way with help of outreach workers and they are beginning work on a resource manual which will support promising practices. The outreach workers have come up with consistent  descriptions for their services and  the Support Network database has been updated to include this. Professional development has been requested in the area of mental health issues and this will be organized.

There has also been special effort to build relationships to expand the network looking at roles the health care system and multicultural community play with outreach workers and programs.
This partnership could broaden the scope of clients for some outreach workers as many isolated seniors are not currently connecting with senior-service agencies, but could benefit from the linkage.

The Steering Committee met on May 21 and decided to make an effort to engage more Executive Directors in this important work.

Creative Age Edmonton June 4-9
The Creative Age Festival is fast approaching. Five free Art Cafes are scheduled as follows: June 4 at Northgate Lions Seniors Recreation Centre1:30-3 p.m.; June 5 at SAGE 1-2:30 p.m.; June 6 at SEESA 2-3:30 p.m.; June 7 at Mill Woods Seniors Activity Centre 1:30-3:30 and June 7 at Calder Seniors Drop In Society 1:30-3 p.m..  

The Paint Spot has come on-board this year and will have an opening reception of an art show "This Isn't Your Grandma's Art Show" featuring work of artists age 55+  beginning June 6 from 2-4 p.m. The Art show runs to June 30. They have tailored three workshops to seniors: Landscape Painting for Beginners June 7 from 1-3:30; Silk Painting June 8 from 1-3:30; Dragonfly on Canvas June 9 from 1-3:30 p.m. Cost is $25 per workshop for participants age 55+. Call 780-432-0240 to register.

Four workshops have been organized for the Timm's Centre beginning June 6 with Performance Storytelling at 10:30 a.m and Creative Movement at 2:30 p.m.; June 8 with Introduction to Acting 10:30 a.m. and Comedy Improv at 2:30 p.m. At the Timm's Centre on June 7 you can attend an Evening of Theatre  at 7 p.m. or an art café on June 9th at 11:30 a.m. Cost is $10 per workshop or performance. Register at Tix on the Square.

You can also visit City Hall from June 1-6 to see a Photography Exhibition  celebrating seniors by James Parker, Major Head of Photography in Design Studies at MacEwan University. 

There are many other community events and you can find detailed event descriptions on the festival website  
Greetings ESCC Followers.

In an effort to keep you updated on the work of the ESCC (Edmonton Seniors Coordinating Council) we have produced this electronic newsletter which will allow us to provide more project details to supplement our weekly Link Letter. Our plan is to send this out monthly so that ESCC member organizations (board of directors, their staff and members) and other stakeholders can stay informed.

We invite, and encourage you to forward this newsletter to people who may find it useful and informative and if they wish to be added to the subscription list they can send us an e-mail to . If you do not wish to receive further issues of this newsletter kindly unsubscribe to the address listed at the bottom of this newsletter.

As always, the ESCC Board of Directors and staff are willing to attend a meeting of member boards and give a presentation about any of the work we are involved in. You can make this request by e-mailing or by calling 780-423-5635.
Edmonton Seniors Council
Edmonton Seniors Council
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