|Back to Home||Feature Article - May 3, 2012|
New Seniors Health and Fitness Directoryby Julie Druker
Photo: The Working Group of the North and Central Frontenac Area Seniors Health and Fitness Directory, l-r, Kelly Cowdy, Dorothy Fraser, Ray Fletcher, Betty-Anne Blyth, Ruth Pearce, Joyce Bigelow and Susan Leslie Campbell. Courtesy of Betty-Anne Blyth.
Over 4500 residents of North and Central Frontenac received a copy of the North and Central Frontenac Area Seniors Health and Fitness Directory (a.k.a. SHAFD) this past Thursday, which coincided with an official release party at the North Frontenac Telephone Company in Sharbot Lake.
Funded by the Healthy Communities Fund, part of the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care, the directory has been in the works since July 2011 and was begun when Gail Hawley-Knowles, the former program manager at the Sharbot Lake Family Health Team, successfully acquired funding for the project.
The project was led by the Northern Connections Adult Learning Centre in partnership with Northern Frontenac Community Services (NFCS), Sharbot Lake Family Health Team (SLFHT) and Rural Legal Services (RLS). Though an earlier application to do the project was turned down, a second application that included an educational component offered through Northern Connections was approved. The directory was put together by an advisory committee and a working group of volunteers, who through the educational component of the project learned the computer skills needed to gather the information that was included in the directory.
The realization of the need for a single comprehensive directory listing the plethora of seniors health and fitness services available in the two townships was first established by the SLFHT and various seniors groups over three years ago. Joyce Bigelow, executive director at Northern Connections who managed the project, said that she, the volunteers and the partners are extremely pleased and proud of the directory. “The project involved extensive research since we had no pre-existing base to work from. Though we missed a few things, we are extremely pleased with how it turned out and believe that it will be a very useful document for seniors looking for a wide range of services in the community.”
Laura Baldwin, program manager of the Sharbot Lake Family Health Team, who picked up on the project where Gail Hawley-Knowles left off, said that the Family Health Team is equally pleased. “To be involved in a project that will be so beneficial to seniors in the community was extremely rewarding. Seniors will now have a comprehensive guide to all of the health and fitness services available to them, which is a great thing.”
Over 8000 copies of the directory were printed and for those who did not receive one, copies can be picked up at the Sharbot Lake Family Health Team and Dental Office, NFCS and Northern Connections. An electronic copy of the directory will be available in upcoming weeks on the Central and North Frontenac and Southern Frontenac Community Services websites. Anyone with services to add to the directory can contact staff at Northern Connections at 613-279-2499 or firstname.lastname@example.org.