Monday , 21 June 2021

In-home support for seniors program free in Bonnyville area

A new support program can help tidy the house while engaging with local seniors in the Bonnyville area.

The Bonnyville and District FCSS’ is offering an In-Home Support Program where staff come and help clean for the elderly and keep them company.

It is free until March 31st, said Diahann Polege-Aulotte after the FCSS earned a grant from United Way.

They’ve been laying the groundwork for the program since September.

“In the grant, I wrote that because of COVID, seniors that might have family coming in to do cleaning for them, may not be able to have that anymore, because they could be isolating. Seniors now need to isolate and be careful, as we all do. And I was successful with the grant and I was so excited about that,” said Polege-Aulotte.

“This is a dream of mine to provide the housekeeping for my seniors, because they deserve it. Right now, I have quite a few seniors signed up.”

How it works is FCSS staff will call the senior the day before they are set to come over and do a COVID symptom questionnaire. Then that morning, the staff member going into the senior’s house goes through the same protocol. If both are showing no signs, then the program goes ahead.

Staff use the equipment already in the home, so it’s not being transported from each site.

“My supervisor has the health inspector on speed dial to check on the changes, So currently, the day before or the date or the morning of the visit to the individual, my staff have to phone and do the pre-COVID checklist with them.

“I have three amazing ladies Diana, Tracy and Carol. And they, they’re just awesome. I can’t say enough about them. They carry in that compassion and professionalism that they bring into the seniors,” she said.

The program is available for residents in Bonnyville and those in M.D. wards 1-4, which includes the Muriel Lake, Thierren, Glendon, La Corey, and Moose Lake areas. Other wards in the M.D. of Bonnyville fall under Cold Lake FCSS jurisdiction.

Polege-Aulotte said they are working on new funding outlets to extend the program free of charge past March 31.

Snow Angels program

This winter, Bonnyville FCSS Snow Angels program continues. It relies on good samaritans helping out their neighbours, who might not be able to keep up with the snow.

“Our snow angel program, don’t forget about it. So that program is one that you can get assigned to put in your yard saying a Snow Angel is needed here. But we don’t take names, or have a list of individuals that utilize that or to do that program. It’s out of the goodness of your heart,” said Polege-Aulotte.

“So if you see a sidewalk of a person that needs it, please just shovel it.”

Call 780-826-2120 to get yourself or someone in need registered.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.