Since it began in 1936, The Victoria Foundation has granted more than $160 million to support hundreds of organizations, $14 million last year alone.
But how can The Foundation be assured that they’re spending that money on what matters to the community? That’s where Vital Conversations comes in.
The “Inclusion and Wellbeing As We Age” workshop is one of dozens of seminars offered, free of charge, during “Embrace Aging Month”
“Embrace Aging Month” is initiative of the Eldercare Foundation.
“We launched it in 2006” explains Eldercare Foundation Executive Director Lori McLeod, “because we really wanted to connect people with all of the resources and educational opportunities that are available in their communities…
“So that they can start to plan, and think about how they want to navigate through their journey of aging.”
Sandra Richardson, CEO of The Victoria Foundation explains why these partnerships, and these workshops, are so important.
“We look at what Vital Signs puts the focus on” says Richardson.
“An issue in the community has been seniors social isolation, so who are the experts in the community…?
“We just look at building a collaboration [with those experts] to bring the public out, to learn more, to hear from them.”
Feedback from those attending this workshop appears to be positive.
“I think it’s wonderful that they do what they do,” says participant Diane Swanson.
“I mean…I’ve got a lot out of them…I think that they’re great.”
Swanson’s husband Wayne agrees.
“They’ve talked about a lot of things…even financial stuff, and health concerns, exercise…
“And we’re at that stage of life where we sort of are changing, and we need a little bit of a refresher…”
What’s interesting, according to McLeod, is it’s not just people at “that stage of life,” as senior Wayne Swanson called it, attending.
“We’ve also noticed that we’ve had a lot of younger people.
“People are starting to see that their loved ones are aging, and they want to know how they can help, and how they, too, can look at their own journey of aging and plan for that a little bit in advance.”
Richardson sees an added benefit to holding these workshops for The Victoria Foundation.
“It’s a way that we can collaborate with good partners in the community” says Richardson.
“And also listen to what people have to say, and that feeds into future additions of Vital Signs, and just puts a little emphasis in the community about our seniors.”
Click here to support future workshops with a tax-deductible donation to the Eldercare Foundation, or contact the Foundation at 250- 370-5664.
You can also mail your donation to The Eldercare Foundation at 1454 Hillside Ave, Victoria, BC V8T 2B7.