June Newsletter

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

  • Bay Seniors BBQ picnic is June 20
  • Saturday Sparkle in person June 18
  • Member’s Story: A walk with the King

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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 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 or call Carl Breckenridge at 902-820-2212.


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 or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.


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 or call the info centre at 902-820-3334.


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

For more information contact Mike Maher at or 902-444-0262.


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

For more information email 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 or 902-823-1144.


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 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

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 or call 902-820-3334.

“More hands make light work.”

Forget the war – let’s get married

MEMBER STORY – Neil Everton & Halina St James

A chance encounter in the Jordanian desert during the first Gulf War led to a lot of changes for a couple who, for the last 25 years, have called Tantallon their home.

“I was on assignment for the BBC,” says Neil Everton. “I had no idea that I was about to meet a red-head who would become my wife and take me to a new life in Canada.”

The red-head was Halina St James – on assignment for the CBC. Halina’s regular beat had been covering politics with the CBC’s bureau in Ottawa.

On one memorable day she survived a crash in a small plane with NDP leader Ed Broadbent.

Off the political beat, she covered Olympic Games in Atlanta, Barcelona and Norway.

A few years after moving to Tantallon they quit journalism and set up a company to help people overcome the fear of speaking in public or being interviewed by the media.

Halina had been shot at in the Romanian Revolution. Neil had been arrested as a spy by Russian soldiers in Afghanistan. But a bigger threat came in 2012. Halina had a stroke and lost the power of speech. Halina worked hard to get her voice back… singing her ABCs and re-learning how to write.

She made a complete recovery – and celebrated by delivering a speech in Newfoundland.

She has just published her fourth book and launched a new online training program for speakers.

“Nova Scotia has been our sanctuary,” says Halina. “We couldn’t live anywhere else.”

Halina with CBC correspondent Joe Schlesinger in the burning oilfields of Kuwait. And (above) racing with CTV anchor Lloyd Robertson to beat a deadline at the Barcelona Olympics.

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 for more information.

Healthy Gut – Healthy Brain

Professor Tara Perrot (right) and dietitian Edie Shaw-Ewald talked at our September meeting about the connection between a healthy gut and a healthy brain.

Tara is a professor in the Department of Psychology and Neuroscience at Dalhousie University. She explained how it is important to think of our body holistically. The brain and gut talk back and forth to each other, and what we eat influences how strong or weak is the communication path.

Edie Shaw-Ewald, registered Dietitian at the Tantallon Superstore, talked about our diets and which foods are best for brain health.

We heard that many experts consider the Mediterranean Diet and Dash Diet as the overall healthiest way of eating, lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of heart disease and diabetes. By taking research from both diets, scientists were able to pull the key ingredients that specifically targeted brain health and combined the results into what is called the MIND Diet.

The MIND Diet focuses specifically on brain health, and is designed to prevent dementia and loss of brain function as you age.

To learn more, click here to view a PDF of the presentation!

It’s Media Literacy Week!

Break the fake: four tips to help you tell what’s true online

Do you feel like you don’t know who to trust on mainstream or social media? It can be tough to tell what’s true and what’s “fake news” just by looking at a headline.

And how do you know if the people making claims online can be trusted? Are they independent voices, or just peddling a product or pushing a conspiracy theory?

Media Literacy Week starts on October 7. With that in mind, here are four quick and easy steps to find out the truth and share good information. Sometimes you only have to do one of these things:

Tip # 1: Use Fact-Checking Tools

Sometimes a single search can break the fake, if a professional fact-checker like Snopes has already done the work for you.

The site has a search tool where you plug in a couple of keywords and discover if the item has been flagged as fake.

Or you can use MLW’s custom fact check search tool . Put the title or keywords in the simple search box.If no reliable fact-checker has covered the topic yet, move on to Tip # 2 – Find the Source or Tip # 3 – Check Other Sources.

Tip # 2 Find the Source

Because it’s so easy to copy and share things online, it’s important to find out where something originally came from before you decide whether or not to trust it.

The easiest way to find the source is usually to follow links that will lead you to the original story.

In social media like Facebook or Twitter, the link is usually at the end or bottom of thepost.

Tip # 3 Verify the Source

Whether you’re looking at a website, a photo or video, or a news story, what really matters is whether or not the people who originally created it are trustworthy. If the source isn’t reliable you have no reason to believe their information.

To find out if a source is reliable, ask three questions:

1 – Do they really exist?
“About Us” pages and profiles are easy to fake, so use a search engine or Wikipedia to research the credentials of the source.

Some social networks, like Twitter and Instagram, verify users by putting a blue check mark next to their name. This does not mean they’re necessarily a reliable source, but it does mean that they are who they say they are.

2 – Are they who they say they are?
It’s easy to pretend to be someone else online, so once you know the source really exists, you need to find out if what you’re looking at really came from them.

3 – Are they trustworthy?
For sources of general information, like newspapers, find out if they have a process for making sure they’re giving you good information.

For more specialized sources, find out whether they’re experts or authorities.

Tip # 4 Check Other Sources
The News tab is better than the main Google search for this step. While not every source that’s included is perfectly reliable, they are all news outlets that really exist.

MLW’s custom news search, searches ten Canadian and international sources of reliable news.

Make sure to take at least one of these steps to double-check before you share anything you see online, every time. Because only you can break the fake.


About Media Literacy Week

Media Literacy Week is an annual national campaign hosted by MediaSmarts and the Canadian Teachers Federation to promote digital and media literacy, with activities and events taking place in classrooms, libraries, museums and community groups from coast to coast.

October Newsletter

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

  • We’re looking for volunteers
  • Ten foods for a healthy brain
  • Reusable bag campaign back for second year
  • NEW feature! Members share their stories
  • Upcoming events, local info and much more!