George Publow, a volunteer driver who takes seniors to medical appointments and shopping for Community Care’s Escorted Transportation Program.
Volunteers help seniors live at home
Prince Edward Community Care for Seniors has provided seniors with escorted transportation to medical appointments and essential shopping for 30+ years yet many still don’t know it’s available to them.
As the population ages in this community, there will be an increase in requests for services to support seniors. The recent Vital Signs report released by the Prince Edward County Foundation stated that "getting around" is a huge issue in the County and especially for seniors.
Community Care is the only organization operating an Escorted Transportation Service for this client population with the involvement of volunteer drivers.
A recent grant from The Stark Family Fund will support promotional efforts to make seniors and their caregivers more aware of the programs operated by Community Care to help transport seniors and recruit additional volunteers. The goal is to enhance the profile of the Escorted Transportation Service. A promotional campaign will take place over the next month including a householder mailing (on October 28th) to all 11,000 addresses in Prince Edward County. There will also be advertising in local newspapers and online (countylive.ca and the Community Care website).
Community Care offers "kitchen table to kitchen table" service where the driver stays with the client the entire trip as an escort, thus making this a suitable service for frail elderly people. Referrals are received from partnering organizations including direct requests from individuals.
"The benefits of this program are that seniors who need a ride to medical appointments and essential shopping will know that there is a way to get there" commented Debbie MacDonald Moynes, Executive Director, Prince Edward Community Care. "Seniors are able to continue to live at home successfully even if they don’t drive, and caregivers are provided with much needed support", says MacDonald Moynes.
Recruitment of volunteers to help seniors is also an important part of the operation. These drivers provide rides to medical appointment and for essential shopping. It is anticipated that this campaign will encourage additional people to volunteer to boost capacity in providing this important service for seniors.
"Our programs continue to have a positive impact on the quality of life of seniors here in the County and we anticipate that this campaign will continue to address the issue of getting around, highlighted in the Vital Signs report", says MacDonald Moynes.
The Prince Edward County Community Care for Seniors Association supports seniors to live independently at home. Services include Meals to Home, nutrition and reassurance programs, caregiver support and respite, homemaking, yard work, snow shovelling and home maintenance. The agency is partly funded by the Ministry of Health & Long-Term Care through the South East Local Health Integration Network and supported by donations and community fundraising efforts.
For more information call Prince Edward Community Care at 613-476-7493 or www.communitycareforseniors.org
For more information contact:
Debbie MacDonald Moynes, Executive Director