Learn how Bay Seniors is serving the Bay and how you can help

For the past ten years, Bay Seniors volunteers have contributed in many ways to the lives of seniors and all residents of the broader St. Margaret’s Bay area. The Bay is a wonderful place to live, retire and make friends – especially when we do good deeds and carry out valuable projects with each other!
 

Below is a summary of some of our many activities. As Bay Seniors keeps expanding our services in our community, we are always looking for new volunteers to help. If you or a friend are interested about volunteering in the Bay, contact us using the information below.

We are always looking for new volunteers to help!

Seniors Information Centre

The Seniors Information Centre helps find services for seniors and their families, including Seniors Association activities and programs, government services that help seniors save money and live safely in their own home.

Volunteer Role: Helping visitors find resources. Answering telephone and email inquiries. Training and support assistance is provided! Time commitment is 2 hours weekly on a Tuesday or Thursday from 10am to Noon or Noon to 2pm.

For more information email centre@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Reuseable Bags

In an effort to reduce the use of plastic bags in our area, Bay Seniors has been working on collecting recycled materials to make cloth re-useable shopping bags. Once completed, the bags are marketed in St. Margaret’s Bay to promote the use of cloth bags and as a fundraiser for Bay Seniors.

Volunteer Role:
Volunteers participate on cutting days to cut out the bag pattern, assemble sewing kits and sew bags at home. We are especially in need of more volunteer sewers. You will be given written sewing instructions and a demonstration of how the bags are assembled.

This will be an ongoing project and we appreciate donations of bag fabric, cotton lining, thread and strapping.

For more information email reuseablebags@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Grocery Bus

In partnership with BayRides, Seniors Association volunteers help participants purchase their groceries. Social time with tea and snacks is included. Participants are delivered back to their home.

Volunteer Roles:
・Help on the grocery bus run on Tuesday mornings from 9:15am – 11:15 am.
・Help with coordinating Grocery bus volunteer activities, 1-2 hours a week.

For more information email Heather Thompson at neighbours@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

NEW! Senior Safety Program

Create and work with a small team to establish a “Senior Safety Program” modelled on the already existing program in Lunenburg County (LSSP). The LSSP have made a commitment to support our endeavour through sharing their start up plan, grant application process and mentoring throughout.

Volunteer Role: Volunteers be able to dedicate considerable time and effort at the start up, eg. to interview and hire a qualified coordinating person. Once established a Board of Directors will be required to supervise, recommend and ensure the success of the program.

For more information email Heather Thompson at neighbours@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Fitness & Exercise – Aerobics and Tai Chi

As the years go by, we tend to slow down, become stiff and be less active. It is important to remain as active as possible, and walking regularly is one good way to achieve this. A brisk walk for 30 minutes three times a week is a good start.

For the more determined, the Seniors Association provides TaiChi and Aerobics classes. TaiChi is on Monday mornings and Aerobics on Wednesday and Friday mornings. For those with reduced mobility, a chair aerobics class is available on Monday mornings.

The exercises are low impact and can be performed at the participant’s own level. A relaxed and welcoming atmosphere is part of all our classes.

For more information email fitness@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

St. Margaret’s Bay Housing Coalition

The Housing Coalition is a registered NS society with its own Board of Directors and membership representing many sectors in our community. The goal is to create multi-generational affordable housing for seniors, families and people with disabilities in an inclusive caring community. The startup of the Housing Coalition is supported by the Seniors Association.

Volunteer Roles:
・Leading or assisting with communications and social media activities.
・Assisting with preparation of housing needs surveys, financial planning and business plans.
・Liaison with community groups, government housing agencies and political representatives.
・Developing into leadership roles and joining the volunteer Board of Directors

For more information contact Nancy Gilbert at gilbertnancy@hotmail.com or 902-826-7050.

Bay Treasure Chest

The Seniors Association is one of the founding partners of the Bay Treasure Chest. Fourteen community volunteer groups and some 230 volunteers organize and support Treasure Chest activities and often work together to provide resources and services through all sectors of our community.

Volunteer Roles:
・Help with the Wednesday afternoon counts, once or twice a month.
・Partner with the Seniors Association leader to supervise 1 count a month.

For more information contact Fred Dolbel fred@bayseniors.ca or 902-823-1144.

NEW! Home Safety and Repair

A small team of Seniors Association and community members are interested in supporting seniors with the repair and maintenance of safety issues with their homes. There is a need for community organizations and businesses to help.

Volunteer Role: Team members will coordinate activities with trades people, government agencies and local not-for-profit groups. Seed funding is in place and volunteers from community organizations and businesses are needed to ensure the success of this program.

For more information email Heather Thompson at neighbours@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Grant Writing

As your Seniors Association continues to expand the breadth and variety of services offered for seniors, their families and the community additional funding is required to keep new and old programs alive.

Volunteer Role: Join a small team who researches and writes grant applications.

For more information email centre@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Monthly Meetings

Our monthly meetings are usually held at 2pm on the third Thursday each month (except July and August) at Shining Waters Marina. Everyone is welcome and we hear from, and talk with, experts who work with seniors and their families, as well as speakers on a wide variety of topics from gardening to healthy eating, housing, travel and local interests.

These public meetings are free and are a great opportunity to inform, socialize, meet friends and get to know what’s going on in the community. Light refreshments are served.

Volunteer Role: Help develop interesting topics. Helping at the reception desk with nametags, etc.

For more information email Michelle MacLean at programs@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Social Committee

Social Committee volunteers discuss suggestions and topics for the monthly speakers series to make all the meetings meaningful and enjoyable.

For more information email Michelle MacLean at social@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Book Club

The Bay Seniors Book Club meets at a member’s home once a month to discuss and share ideas around a featured book. The Halifax Public Library accumulates a selection of book kits.

Reading books helps keep the brain alert and the social aspect of the book club brings new friends together. Members appreciate varying points of view and responses and learn about each other’s tastes in literature and our experiences that form our opinions.

For more information email neighbours@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Neighbours Helping Neighbours

Neighbours Helping Neighbours started out as an idea, that if neighbours were friendly with the people who lived near them, they would notice when a neighbour may need a little help. That help may be a friendly visit for a cup of tea, sharing some freshly baked goods or helping with snow removal from walkways.

For more information email Heather Thompson at neighbours@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Bay Expo

The Bay Expo is a free, family-friendly community event hosted by the Seniors Association every Spring. Families and friends of all ages come out to see what is new each year – we have a Silent Auction in one big room and fun games, new to you jewelry, books and household items in the other room. Local businesses, home crafters and not for profit groups in St. Margaret’s Bay display their goods and services . Each year the Expo continues to grow and offer new additions.

Volunteer Roles:
・Planning and coordination for the May 2020 Expo (2-7 days leading up to May).
・Helping with setting up exhibits, meeting visitors (2 days in May).

For more information email expo@bayseniors.ca or call Carl Breckenridge at 902-820-2212.

Newsletter

The Seniors Association produces a monthly “Bay Seniors” newsletter which provides news of interest to seniors, identifies government and community resources, and informs members of upcoming Bay Seniors activities and community events.

Volunteer Role: Finding and writing interesting stories about local seniors’ activities.

For more information email info@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Facebook

Many seniors use Facebook to stay connected with family and friends. You can also find out more about local seniors and community activities by joining the Seniors Association Facebook.

Volunteer Role: Participating in Facebook posts about local seniors’ activities.

For more information email info@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Photography

Volunteer Role: Assist with taking photographs of various Seniors Association events.

For more information contact Mike Maher at mike.maher@bellaliant.net or 902-444-0262.

Membership

Volunteer Role: Welcoming new members and updating membership records (using MS Excel).

For more information email centre@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

Computer Tech – Microsoft Excel, Bookkeeping (SAGE)

Volunteer Role: Help project leaders maintain participant and volunteer lists.

For more information contact Fred Dolbel at fred@bayseniors.ca or 902-823-1144.

Excursions

A summer or fall excursion is a chance for members to get together for a day and just “go somewhere”. Excursions are subsidized to be affordable for members to meet and engage with others, enjoy and remember pieces of Nova Scotia’s rich history and culture offerings. Bus transport allows folks to just relax and enjoy themselves.

Volunteer Role: Asking members for excursions ideas, coordinating the 2020 excursions.

For more information email centre@bayseniors.ca or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.

“How can I help? I’ll do anything”

Every once in a while someone comes along and says “I’ll do anything”. There are so many neat things going on in our community we’ll help you find something that is fun and interesting!

Drop in to the Information Centre between 10am to 2pm Tuesday or Thursday, call us at 902-820-3334 or email centre@bayseniors.ca.

Your Seniors Association encourages members and friends to share our skills and life experiences by volunteering for association projects and activities. If you have a favourite skill or interest to pursue, please contact us at volunteer@bayseniors.ca or call 902-820-3334.

“More hands make light work.”

Beautiful temples – but watch out for landmines

MEMBER STORY – Joan Redmond

I think I was born with the ‘Travel Bug’, and I know that I acquired it from my mother.

She and I travelled to places like parts of Canada and the US, Cuba, Venezuela , Costa Rico and Hawaii.

As much as I enjoyed these trips I think the most moving and awe inspiring was the trip made to Angkor Wat, near Siem Reap, Cambodia.

This is a site that dates from the 6th to the 8th century. It is beautiful beyond imagination. The temples, the walls, the history, the people.

Temples with the most intricate carvings you will ever see. Walls carved with a parade of elephants. Temples with several levels.

It is hard to imagine just how these magnificent buildings were created at that time period with the tools available to them.

My husband and I had a wonderful guide who even took us to see the sun come up over the temples.

I was brave and climbed as many of the temples as I was allowed; husband and guide stayed on ground level.

We had to be careful to stay on the paths as there are still undetonated land mines. It is not unusual to see victims of these mines: people who have lost feet, legs and arms as they worked in the fields or walked the paths where the mines were hidden.

It is a country that has suffered the turmoil of war and the impact of poverty. But in spite of this history, it is a country with a beautiful culture, where the people are proud of their heritage and where several languages are spoken. A truly awesome country with so much to offer.

We want your stories!

What is your experience living in Nova Scotia? Have you lived or traveled to an exotic location? Perhaps you have a surprising hobby? Or you’ve met famous people as part of your job? We are looking for members to share (or nominate a friend to share) their story at an upcoming monthly meeting of the Association and/or in the monthly newsletter. Email monique@bayseniors.ca for more information.

Recycling expert provides the answers on ‘what goes where’

Loren Horwich, Local Waste Educator at Divert NS, joined us at our October monthly meeting to talk about recycling in HRM.

We learned that in HRM, we have 5 waste streams:

  1. blue bag recycling
  2. paper recycling
  3. corrugated cardboard recycling
  4. green bin (organics)
  5. garbage

Out of all the streams, blue bag recycling gets the most questions as there is such a variety of what can go into the bag. Loren’s top tips are summarized in the panel below.

HRM has been collecting recyclables since 1992, at the recycling plant in Bayer’s Lake where everything is sorted by hand. What is accepted in recycling is based on the need and a market for that particular material.

We learned about innovative projects in Nova Scotia that take old plastics and turn them into recycled plastic lumber and furniture, carpet and even a soft fibre that feels just like cotton.

Although most of our time with Loren was spent talking about recycling, she reminded us about the 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle – with the first in the list being the best solution for the environment.

Even if you are a diligent recycler, remember to reduce first, maybe supporting your local farmer’s market to reduce the amount of food packaging, using cloth bags instead of plastic or keeping your own reusable straw or coffee mug in your car. The less you use, the less that has to be recycled.

Here are some of Loren’s tips for blue bag recycling:

  1. HRM is now accepting old metal pots, pans and cookie sheets (plastic handles are ok).
  2. When recycling plastics, ask yourself, is this a container? If it is made of plastic but is not a container, it can’t go into the blue bag.
  3. All caps and lids must be removed from containers (these DO NOT go into the blue bag). Instead of throwing them in the garbage, you can collect all caps and bring them into your closest Enviro Depot. The caps are used as part of a new pilot project in Nova Scotia to aid in waste-water treatment.
  4. Paper labels DO NOT have to be removed from containers. The paper is burned up when the plastic recyclables are melted down.
  5. Food containers DO NOT have to be scrubbed clean. Containers have to be empty but not spotless; like paper labels bits of food residue is burned up in the melting process.
  6. Use the ‘rule of thumb’ when determining if a plastic can be recycled. If you can use your thumb to stretch the plastic it can be recycled, if it does not stretch it can not be recycled. That means no hard plastic packaging and bags, plastic cutlery, plastic straws or Keurig cups.
  7. Bundle all soft plastics into one plastic bag. This makes it easier to sort on the assembly line at the recycling plant.

You can find the complete list of what goes where at halifax.ca/recycle

Fall Prevention Month

Did you know...

  • Falls are the leading cause of injury among older Canadians
  • 20-30% of seniors experience one or more falls each year
  • Falls are the cause of 85% of seniors’ injury-related hospitalizations
  • Falls are the cause of 95% of all hip-fractures
  • 50% of all falls causing hospitalization happen at home

You can reduce the risk of falls by following some simple strategies, most of which take less than a minute:

Personal Risk Factors

  • Personal risk factors can include: vision, hearing, balance problems, dizziness, weakness, medications, pain, chronic illness, footwear.
  • Tell your doctor if you often feel dizzy or lightheaded. There are many different causes of dizziness, including some medications.
  • Once a year, have your doctor or pharmacist review all medications. As you age, the way some medications affect you can change and increase your risk of falling.
  • Have your eyes checked every year.
  • Keep open communications with your healthcare provider about any concerns!

Known Environmental Hazards

  • Environment hazards can include: lighting, clutter, spills, uneven surfaces, stairs, rugs, flooring, furniture.
  • Keep pathways, halls and stairways well lit and clear.
  • Install grab bars and use walking devices as needed.
  • Watch out for ice, cracks and uneven surfaces.
  • Wear shoes that support your feet.
  • Avoid rushing and doing too many things at once.

Keep Active, Eat Well, Hydrate

  • Regular exercise can increase muscle strength, improve balance and help prevent you from falling. Take part in activities that improve your balance such as Tai Chi.
  • Follow Canada’s Food Guide. Choose foods from the four food groups at each meal.
  • Dehydration can make you dizzy. Drink water often, even when you’re not thirsty.
  • You may not get all the calcium and vitamin D you need from foods.
  • Talk with your healthcare provider to see if supplements are right for you.

For more information and resources, visit fallpreventionmonth.ca or bayseniors.ca/health

November Newsletter

Our November newsletter is now available! Click the cover image below to view or download.

IN THIS ISSUE:
  • A bright new look for your Association website
  • Joan Redmond recalls her most memorable trip
  • Children host Seniors for stories and dress-up
  • Simple strategies that could prevent a fall
  • Upcoming events, local info and much more!