(pixabay.com)

NEAT program aims to socialize isolated seniors

Saanich Parks and Recreation offers program to those in Sidney, Victoria, Oak Bay and Saanich

Saanich Parks and Recreation aims to address older adult social isolation with a new program called Neighbours Engaging in Activities Together (NEAT).

This program, offered in partnership with Island Health, Oak Bay, Victoria and Sidney, is designed to build self-confidence, connection and provide a sense of belonging to participants. Many older adults live alone or face various barriers to participation. Barriers can include everything from financial, transportation, physical, emotional and social challenges. With Island Health recreation therapists and recreation staff, participants develop skills to overcome these perceived barriers, make sustainable social connections and are introduced to a variety of activities.

READ ALSO: Victoria seniors want to know more about marijuana

According to a 2012 Statistics Canada report, nearly one in four seniors reported they would like to participate more in social activities, while a 2008/09 Canadian Community Health Survey found that one-fifth of seniors felt left out, isolated from others, or lacked companionship.

The NEAT program combats that isolation. It is offered at apartment buildings or local meeting spaces where people already feel comfortable. Participants get to know each other in a relaxed space with fun ice breakers and exercises. They are introduced to resources and activities in their neighbourhood and after two weeks of leisure education the participants choose activities they would like to experience.

These activities can be anything from art to sports and everything in between. Each of the following weeks include an activity of the groups’ choice. They will be responsible for their attendance and finding their own transportation but will feel supported by the group. Emerging leaders are encouraged to take on an “ambassador” role and help make the group sustainable after the program ends.

READ ALSO: New ElderDog program helps seniors keep dogs at home

Applications are now being accepted for the next set of programs. Contact Julie Wallace, Saanich Parks & Recreation, Community Services, at 250-475-5408 or Julie.wallace@saanich.ca for more information.



c.vanreeuwyk@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Autism support dog helps Langford boy hold his head high

Family shares story for Autism Awareness Month

Give your immunity a boost for National Immunization Awareness Week

Immunize Canada calls on Canadians to stay up to date with their immunizations

Bear sightings historically rare in Langford: City staff

51 bear complaints or sightings in last year

Families hop over to Easter celebrations at Millstream Village

Annual Easter Eggstravaganza had lineups before 11 a.m.

Parishioners bear the weight of a large wooden cross on Good Friday

Good Friday Passion Procession winds through streets of Victoria

WATCH: Movie star and PACE alum Calum Worthy talks musical theatre and his career

“American Vandal” and “Austin and Ally” actor has been returning to the program for over 20 years

POLL: How often does your family use BC Ferries?

Navigating the lineups for BC Ferries is a way of life for… Continue reading

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for the week of April 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

B.C. RCMP receive application for Police Cat Services

RCMP announced the launch of the Police Cat Services unit as an April fools joke

Kirkland Signature veggie burgers recalled due to possible metal fragments

Recalled products came in 1.7 kg packages with a best before date of Apr. 23, 2019

Parents of 13 who tortured children get life after hearing victims

One of their daughters fled their home and pleaded for help to a 911 operator

Flooding, climate change force Quebecers to rethink relationship with water

Compensation for victims of recurring floods limit to 50% of a home’s value, or a maximum of $100,000

Storms blast South, where tornadoes threaten several states

9.7 million people in the Carolinas and Virginia at a moderate risk of severe weather

Private cargo ship brings Easter feast to the space station

There are three Americans two Russians and one Canadian living on the space station

Most Read