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Still going strong

One down and how many more to go? Depends on the response from the senior drivers in Squamish.

One down and how many more to go? Depends on the response from the senior drivers in Squamish.

The first of the Mature Driver's Workshops took place Monday (March 20) to an "in house" group of participants, mainly the members of the Seniors Creative Connections committee, to give the facilitator a chance to become familiar with the material. The purpose of the workshops is to help seniors assess their risks and improve their driving so that they can keep driving as safely as possible for as long as possible and have been developed and materials provided by the BCAA Traffic Safety Foundation and the Vancouver Foundation. The workshops are being offered to senior drivers in communities throughout BC and are meeting with a high participation rate and are greatly appreciated by the participants. Classes of 20 to 25 are recommended so watch the newspaper for when the next session(s) in Squamish will take place. The just completed workshop was very well received with the most familiar comment on departing being, "All senior drivers should take this workshop."

On Sunday (March 26) the Legion is holding another of its very popular Family Breakfast events, starting at 8:30 a.m. and costing $5. Contact Bruce at 604-898- 3913.

The Squamish Reiki Community will meet from 1 to 4 p.m. on Sunday (March 26) in Trinity Hall at the United Church. Contact Barb at 604-898-3803.

The Over the Hill Hikers have a Lighthouse Park, in West Vancouver, trip planned for Tuesday (March 28). Meet in the Brennan Park parking lot at the end near the Forestry Building at 9 a.m. to carpool. Bring a lunch. If the weather is bad a local walk will happen instead.. Contact Ray at 604-898-4316 or Lesley at 604-898-1628.

The Tantalus Walking Club will meet at 10 a.m. on Thursday (March 30) at the south end of Galbraith Avenue, the far end of Loggers' Lane, for a walk twice around the Nexen Beach. Contact Joyce at 604-898-5594.

The ever popular Soup and Sandwich takes place at 11:30 a.m. on Thursday (March 30) at the Tantalus Seniors' Centre. "The works" is still only $5; a great day to invite a friend to lunch. Contact Ray at 604-898-4316.

One of the things you find out about after you retire is just how many people are out in a community advocating for seniors' needs so that the programs, facilities and personnel required are more likely to be in place when needs do arise. One such hard working group became organized as a result of a survey taken at the Seniors' Wellness Fair in 2003.This group of seniors and concerned citizens meet once a month to discuss and take action on seniors' issues in Squamish, Pemberton and Whistler. Representatives in Squamish are drawn from such diverse organizations as the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority, Brennan Park Recreation Centre, Squamish Public Library, the Select Committee on Seniors' Issues, Tantalus Seniors' Centre, Branch 70 of the Senior Citizens' Association of B.C., The Chief, etc.

One of this groups many accomplishments in its short one and a half years existence is to establish a One-Stop Information Line for Seniors. By calling 604-892-2293 or 1-877-892-2231 staff can answer your questions or provide you with the appropriate numbers to contact, make inquiries on your behalf if necessary and will even assist in the filling out of certain forms. In other words, if they can't directly help you, they will put you in touch with the department or person who can. It is also a One-Stop Brochure Centre and well worth a quick visit to peruse what is on offer to see if some issue for yourself or a senior family member or friend could be cleared up or at least guided along the correct path to a more satisfying conclusion.

Another successful venture for the Seniors' Creative Connections group in Squamish was to secure funding through the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority to assist District of Squamish Recreational Services coordinate the very much appreciated Keep Well Program for Seniors now reaching completion of its second twice weekly series. Really good news for seniors currently benefitting from this fitness for seniors program, and others who may now wish to join, is that sufficient funding has again been secured so that the program will continue on after the March 30 end of the present session. Contact Carol or the Brennan Park staff at 604-898-5559. Arrangements for bus transportation can also be arranged.

Ground breaking news, not quite literally, is that only a servicing agreement (power, water, sewage, etc) remains to be concluded before an assisted living complex for the seniors of Squamish becomes a reality. On land owned by the Squamish Senior Citizens Home Society, on Third Avenue just beyond the Cedars and the Manor, a building of 20 assisted living units funded and to be administered by the province as well as 50 more market rental units is proposed. On site meals are planned and will be utilized as much as is needed by the residents; plans are underway to also include access to the food facilities by the Cedars and the Manor.

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