Senior Watch Old Ottawa South
Meeting Minutes of 26 June 2020
Held virtually via Zoom
Present: Barbara Brown, Anna Cuylits (chair), Sian Fitzgerald, Christine Franklin, Maura Giuliani (minutes), Catherine Read, Peter Wells.
Guests: Dawson Clark, Neda Fayazi, Pascal Juneau
Regrets: Niki DiVito, Terry Hunsley, Carolyn Inch, Lida Malinowski
- Agenda: Agenda approved and READi students introduced
- Minutes: Minutes approved, with correction to article for OSCAR. Proposed article was replaced with article on Community Pillars for Seniors
- Items for updates & discussion:
- Walkability: Request for another bench was discussed. It was agreed that two benches worked well, particularly for social distancing. Catherine suggested that the bench at the school might be reoriented and joined by another. This will be pursued. Anna reported receiving more support from our councillor’s office re the Sunnyside/Leonard bus stop.
- (Intergenerational) Social Connections:
- Community Pillars: Progress here was covered in the OSCAR article. Colonel By has named Evelyn Metcalfe (their sales rep) as a contact, although Sian offered to act on their behalf, if that is desired. Anna will contact Ms Metcalfe.
- Trinity’s RSOOS program: is ongoing, although participation has been almost entirely from the Anglican community.
- READi students: Neda reported that they have a final approval from their supervisor to begin interviews and will host a virtual symposium in September (dates to be announced). They will have results in late August for the SWOOS meeting.
- Housing: Maura reported the results of contacting all those who participated in the earlier housing survey (just over 100). There were 24 responses, of which 13 expressed an interest in living there; 9 simply wanted to be kept informed; and 2 wanted to be dropped from the mailing list. Six respondents were interested in possibly joining our housing committee.
- Feedback on SWOOS webpage: Peter noted that there is a need for sharper contrast on the pages, given an older audience. There was general agreement that material for seniors should be highlighted more effectively. Maura to pursue.
- Future OSCAR columns: Anna felt there was enough material to generate a column.
Next Meeting: Tuesday, 25 August 2020 at 7:30 pm on Zoom.
What are the conditions of life for older adults in Ottawa, before and during the COVID-19 pandemic? Join us to hear some key findings from a fascinating June 2019 study. You will also learn about a new study on the effects of COVID-19 on seniors living in Ottawa.
In June 2019, an international team of 20 interdisciplinary researchers and students descended on Ottawa to do a 10-day “rapid ethnography”, with attention to how experiences of aging were affected by gender, income, LGBTQ2+, dementia, Indigeneity, ethnicity, race, immigration, language, ability, culture, religiosity, and opportunities to live meaningful lives.
The team looked for “promising practices” within the city, focusing on thirteen leading or representative organizations that involve or serve seniors. These organizations ranged from public transportation, ethno-cultural groups and recreation centres, to day programs for dementia, caregiver supports, hospice programs and more. The team interviewed many, many seniors as well as these organizations’ workers and volunteers (many of whom are seniors themselves).
Researchers and students from the site study will report on some key findings from the June 2019 study, as well as explore the following questions with LinR participants: How do the findings compare to your experiences of living in Ottawa? What (and who) might they have missed? In planning policies and practices, how do we consider aging as a societal, rather than individual, phenomenon? How do we plan for aging populations in increasingly heterogeneous cities that are dealing with the effects of austerity budgets and economic uncertainty?
The team has also conducted similar studies in Toronto and Bergen, Norway, and is now repeating as much of this Ottawa study as possible to understand the effects of COVID-19 on seniors living in Ottawa.
- Day: Thursday, October 1
- Time: 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. EST
- Location: Zoom
- This lecture is offered via Zoom, which can be used on computers and mobile devices. We recommend you use a computer/laptop with high speed internet. A camera and microphone will enable to you to participate more fully, but they are not required.
- Fee: FREE
Lecturer biography: Susan Braedley (Social Work) and Renate Ysseldyk (Health Sciences) collaborate on many projects that research aging and care, including this SSHRC Partnership, Age-Friendly Communities in Communities: International Promising Practices. Dr. Ysseldyk’s work focuses on social identity and its relationship to health and well-being for older people, including religious and spiritual practice, ethnicity and culture, involvement in the arts and dementia. Dr. Braedley focuses on the relationship between care and capitalism in the context of socio-demographic change and welfare state developments. We learn a lot from each other, especially when we disagree, and we hope to learn from participants in this seminar, too!