Dawson Creek seniors in good hands with Better at Home

·2 min read

The Better at Home program continues to look out for seniors with the addition of Volunteer Coordinator Carmella Maga.

Maga brings 30 years of non-profit experience after a lifetime of living in the Northern Rockies in Fort Nelson. She says she's ready to tackle seniors' needs in Mile Zero and is actively recruiting volunteers.

"It's a learning curve for me, but not so much. I don't know as many people here, but I'll get there. I really enjoy working for seniors," said Maga.

She added that a huge need for seniors is visitors, socialization is critically important with the COVID-19 pandemic dragging on.

"Especially now with COVID, there's a lot of shut ins, they're scared to go out. A lot of people don't want to have someone come into their home, they're scared of the unknown," Maga said. "So even telephoning can be helpful. Just being a friendly visitor and seeing if they're okay or if they need anything. That's always good."

Coordinator Linda Studley has run the program for 11 years, and says it wouldn’t be possible without residents generously donating their time and resources.

“We’re very proud of the fact that we’ve never had to run a wait list, it might take a week to get things in place, but no one’s ever had to wait indefinitely,” said Studley. “We owe that to good volunteers and good people in the community.”

The program started in 2010 as a pilot project and snowballed from there. It offers seniors services such snow shoveling, yard work, and more, so seniors can remain living in their homes.

After the pilot project concluded, 90 programs were put in place across B.C. to further the volunteer driven initiative.

“Each one is fine tuned to the community, so depending on what other services are available in the community, what the needs are, they can adjust a little bit so they are actually meeting the needs that are pertinent in our community,” said Studley, adding it’s the little things that count the most for seniors.

Anyone looking to get in touch with Better at Home can give them a call at 250-782-2341

tsummer@ahnfsj.ca

Matt Preprost, Local Journalism Initiative, Alaska Highway News

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