Saturday, June 22, 2024
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Connections for seniors and caregivers

CALEB NICKERSON
OUTAOUAIS April 22, 2020
Connexions Resource Centre, a non-profit group that supports the health and well-being of seniors and caregivers across the Outaouais has had to adjust their operation in recent weeks as a result of COVID-19
“We offer an information and referral service to help people find the services that they need, we also offer different activities in the community for all age groups,” explained Connexions Executive Director Danielle Lanyi. “We also work with different partners, as well as with the health and social services system, in terms of increasing their awareness of the English-speaking community and how can those needs be met and how can services be adapted … making sure that the community’s also aware of those services, that’s a really big issue. Often there are services out their but people aren’t aware of them.”
She added that their services are available to the French-speaking citizens of the Pontiac as well.
Due to COVID-19 concerns, the group has suspended their in-person community activities, though Lanyi said that they would be putting out some virtual workshops in the coming weeks. She said that many of their clients aren’t used to the technology, so they would be putting out surveys to see what needs the community has.
On one hand, it’s to find out how people are doing, on the other hand we have some questions about having to reorient our outreach activities using technology,” she said. “So you know, finding out how comfortable people feel with that and what topics they would like to have.”
They have been putting out videos and information on their social media pages. Lanyi said that maintaining social interactions while still obeying public health directives is key.
“If I had a message to really put across, it’s to contact them on a more frequent basis by whatever means that you have, even if it’s just standing in the window and waving at somebody,” she said. “That can go a long way or have kids write letters to send to people. But that’s the big thing for everybody, the isolation.”
She added that the times can also be hard on the people caring for loved ones quarantined in seniors homes or other facilities.
“For the caregivers and their families it’s extremely difficult because I think that maybe there’s a feeling of helplessness where you don’t have that contact with your family member, of course you worry,” she said.
Those looking for more information visit the website centreconnexions.org or contact the centre at 819 777 3206 or info@centreconnexions.org

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