Government of Canada invests close to $3.7 million to tackle seniors' isolation in GTA

TORONTO, July 28, 2015 /CNW/ - The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors), today announced the first in a series of New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP) pan-Canadian project clusters, that aim to address social isolation among seniors in targeted populations across Canada. This group of six interconnected projects is being funded through the 2015–2016 NHSP Call for Proposals for Pan-Canadian Projects, which opened May 29, 2015 and closed July 10, 2015.

The NHSP call for proposals invited organizations applying for project funding to submit an impact plan describing the respective roles they and their project partners would play in addressing the important issue of social isolation among seniors. NHSP pan-Canadian funding of close to a combined $3.7 million is being provided over a three-year period to support the six projects that were proposed as an integral part of the Toronto Engagement to Reduce Isolation of Caregivers at Home and Enhancing Seniors (ENRICHES) Collective Impact Plan.

The Toronto ENRICHES plan targets isolated seniors who are caregivers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA)—a highly populated and culturally diverse area. Partners in the plan's six socially innovative projects will work collaboratively to deliver measurable results to reduce social isolation in this population. The overall impact of their concerted effort will have far-reaching benefits for metro seniors who are caregivers and for the existing network of GTA seniors-serving organizations.

The Toronto ENRICHES project partners include the Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation of Toronto, the Sinai Health System – The Reitman Centre, WoodGreen Community Services, the Alzheimer Society Toronto, the Canadian Mental Health Association and North York Community House. Each has a vested interest in addressing the needs of seniors and in supporting isolated seniors who are caregivers facing the complex challenges and effects of loneliness and isolation.

Minister Wong made this announcement in Toronto, at the MaRS Discovery District.

Quick Facts

  • Since 2006, the NHSP has funded nearly 15,000 projects in hundreds of communities across Canada, representing a total Government of Canada investment of $350 million.
  • With over 200 project proposals, the overwhelming response to the 2015–2016 NHSP Call for Proposals for Pan-Canadian Projects, which was open from May 29 to July 10, demonstrates that both the Government of Canada and communities across Canada consider social isolation to be an important issue.
  • Under the NHSP, funding for pan-Canadian projects can be up to three years in duration and with funding between $150,000 and $750,000.
  • More than $24.3 million is being made available (more than $8.1 million per year over the next three years) for pan-Canadian projects focusing on reducing social isolation among seniors.
  • A wide range of information for seniors, including details on the NHSP and the Government of Canada – Action for Seniors report, is available at Canada.ca/Seniors.
  • The National Seniors Council (NSC) recently devoted its energies to further examining and reporting on the social isolation of seniors and measures to effectively reduce it. The NSC's Report on the Social Isolation of Seniors, 2013–2014 highlighted the importance of working with a wide array of dedicated organizations that deliver services and programs to alleviate isolation among seniors. The report can be found on Canada.ca/Seniors.
  • Since 2006, $2.8 billion in annual tax relief has been provided to seniors and pensioners.

Quotes

"These pan-Canadian projects will focus on reducing social isolation among seniors. They will have a tangible impact on older Canadians through creating social connections, strengthening social bonds and building a sense of community. We have seniors' best interests at heart. Through both collaboration and social innovation, our Government is taking action to enable all Canadian seniors to enjoy a high quality of life."
– The Honourable Alice Wong, Minister of State (Seniors)

"We are very grateful that the Government of Canada recognizes the opportunity it has to support an entire generation of senior caregivers who are looking after their loved ones, often alone, in isolation and with limited support. The ENRICHES partners, led by the Cyril & Dorothy, Joel & Jill Reitman Centre for Alzheimer's Support and Training,  are honored that our collaborative partnership is recognized and supported with funding to reach isolated senior caregivers, making their lives, and those of the loved ones they care for, better."
Kevin Goldthorp, CEO of Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation of Toronto and Executive Vice-President, Advancement & Marketing,  Sinai Health System

"The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation's Innoweave Initiative congratulates the Toronto ENRICHES partners. We look forward to working with ENRICHES and other successful collaboratives as they implement innovative approaches to reduce the rate of seniors social isolation in communities across Canada."
Aaron Good, Managing Director for SiG@McConnell

Associated Links

 

Follow us on Twitter

Like us on Facebook


 


Backgrounder


 

For the 2015–2016 New Horizons for Seniors Program Call for Proposals for Pan-Canadian Projects, the Government of Canada invited organizations seeking project funding to each submit an impact plan describing the respective roles they and their project partners would play in collectively addressing the important issue of social isolation among seniors by using collaborative approaches that place an emphasis on measurable results.

For this call for proposals, the Government partnered with the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and its Innoweave initiative to support the development, implementation and scaling of these collaborative approaches to reduce social isolation among seniors.

The following six GTA organizations identified in the Toronto Engagement to Reduce Isolation of Caregivers at Home and Enhancing Seniors (ENRICHES) Collective Impact Plan are receiving project funding as a result of the NHSP call for proposals. These organizations have a vested interest in addressing the needs of seniors and in supporting isolated seniors who are caregivers facing the complex challenges and effects of loneliness and isolation.

 

ORGANIZATION NAME

PROJECT SUMMARY

FUNDING

AMOUNT

Alzheimer Society Toronto

The Community Connection Program (CCP) project aims to provide education, consultation, and support to caregivers, community partners, dementia champions and the general public leading to the reduction of isolation among senior caregivers.

$345,405

Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation of Toronto

Mount Sinai Hospital Foundation of Toronto (MSHFT) will be the lead organization responsible for coordinating the overall ENRICHES Collaborative Management Project using a collaborative model that relies on understanding each partner organization and on developing strong group processes and common goals and procedures. The overall objective of the project is to provide centralized project and evaluation coordination as well as communication and administrative support to the ENRICHES Collaborative Impact Plan.

$556,575

WoodGreen Community Services

The Financial Wellness and Community Capacity Building for Caregivers project aims to build volunteer and staff capacity to reach isolated senior caregivers (through collaborative partnerships with Toronto Community Housing Corporation, Toronto Public Library and over 15 different ethno-specific community groups) to make a targeted impact on their financial wellness issues, connection with community services, friendly visiting supports for those with mental health issues, and health education modules for isolated senior caregivers.

$744,932

Canadian Mental Health Association

The Living Life to the Full for Older Adult Caregivers project aims to deliver an evidence-based mental health promotion course to older adult caregivers in Toronto. Living Life to the Full (LLTTF) is a community-based, 8-week (12-hour) course offered in groups of 10–15 people.

$671,470

North York Community House

The Newcomer Connections for Senior Caregivers project aims to identify, engage and connect senior caregivers living in northwest Toronto who are at a high risk for isolation due to language and cultural barriers.

$674,393

Sinai Health System – The Reitman Centre

The Innovation and Training to Reduce Isolation in Caregivers and the Elderly (i-TRICE) project aims to expand and adapt the proven best practices of Reitman Centre (RC) programs and methods to a new context—isolated and marginalized seniors. The goal is to provide assessment, therapeutic support and skills training to mitigate the socially isolating effects of caregiver burden and maximize the abilities of elderly caregivers to care for both themselves and their family members.

$747,035

TOTAL

$3,739,810

 

New Horizons for Seniors Program

The New Horizons for Seniors Program (NHSP) is a federal grants and contributions program that supports projects led or inspired by seniors who make a difference in the lives of others and their communities. Through the NHSP, the Government of Canada encourages seniors to share their knowledge, skills and experiences to the benefit of others.

The objectives of the NHSP are:

  • promoting volunteerism among seniors;
  • engaging seniors in the community through mentoring of others;
  • expanding awareness of elder abuse, including financial abuse;
  • supporting social participation and inclusion of seniors; and
  • providing capital assistance for new and existing community projects and/or programs for seniors.

NHSP funding supports pan-Canadian projects and community-based projects.

Pan-Canadian projects

Pan-Canadian projects test and share best practices across the country and replicate interventions that have worked well in addressing seniors' issues. The 2015–2016 NHSP Call for Proposals for Pan-Canadian Projects (now closed) focused on projects that help reduce social isolation among seniors. Funding proposals are currently being assessed.

Successful projects will be up to three years in duration and eligible to receive funding between $150,000 and $750,000. Due to the focus on creating large-scale change by using collaborative approaches, it is anticipated that selected projects will be geographically clustered.

Community-Based Projects

The annual NHSP Call for Proposals for Community-Based Projects closed on July 10, 2015. It invited organizations to apply for funding of up to $25,000 for projects that help empower seniors to share their knowledge, skills and experiences with others and support communities by increasing their capacity to address local issues. Funding proposals are currently being assessed.

For more information on the NHSP, visit Canada.ca/Seniors.

The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and its Innoweave initiative

Established in 1937, the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation has a mandate to enhance Canada's ability to address complex social, environmental and economic challenges. It does this by developing, testing and applying innovative approaches and solutions; by strengthening the community sector; and by collaborating with partners from various sectors—community, private and public.

The Government of Canada is partnering with the J.W. McConnell Family Foundation and its Innoweave initiative to support the development of collaborative approaches that measurably reduce the rate of social isolation among seniors. Innoweave will provide implementation support to funded projects.

 

SOURCE Employment and Social Development Canada

For further information: Justin Wood, Office of the Minister of State (Seniors), 613-852-3761; Media Relations Office, Employment and Social Development Canada, 819-994-5559, media@hrsdc-rhdcc.gc.ca

RELATED LINKS
http://www.hrdc-drhc.gc.ca

Custom Packages

Browse our custom packages or build your own to meet your unique communications needs.

Start today.

CNW Membership

Fill out a CNW membership form or contact us at 1 (877) 269-7890

Learn about CNW services

Request more information about CNW products and services or call us at 1 (877) 269-7890