DRAGONFLY: BuilDing Resilience And RespondinG tO SeNior FraiLtY Program Selected For Funding
In 2019, we received support from the Canadian Foundation for Healthcare Improvement and Canadian Frailty Network to pilot ways of identifying frail older adults, and to trial new ways to connect those older adults to services which improve their resilience. The funding will allow us to hire a frailty assessment coordinator for the clinic, furthering our commitment to to increase knowledge of frailty in primary care, advance best practices, and build capacity.
In the delivery of DRAGONFLY, Sage will use a modified version of the Seniors Community Hub intervention and existing systems in place to address three core elements of practice change: frailty identification, geriatric assessment, and tailored intervention. Using a combination of both the Clinical Frailty Scale (CFS) and Vulnerability/Resiliency assessment, this project will identify opportunities for interventions that will seek to decrease vulnerability and increase resilience. After the tailored intervention(s) are implemented, the primary care providers will reassess the patient’s CFS score at three, six, and 12 months.
Health Services - Expanded Services to Meet the Needs of Seniors
Health Services at Sage exemplifies the potential of global funding in a community-based, Nurse Practitioner-led clinic. Embedded within an established senior serving organization, Health Services @ Sage has successfully overcome the artificial barrier between the physical and social determinants of health to provide quality, innovative, person-centred care to seniors across the greater Edmonton area.
Health Services at Sage, along with all of Sage’s programming, aims to meet the physical, mental, and emotional health needs of low-resourced older adults - defined as those who are marginalized or hard to reach, homeless or near homeless, caregivers, living with a physical or mental disability, newcomers, or financially challenged seniors with limited disposable income and limited access to financial resources. As such, Sage places great importance on being as accessible as possible - it has a central location; excellent access to public transit; and accessibility for those who use have limited mobility. In addition to seniors being able to access Sage’s physical location, Nurse Practitioners also provide outreach and home visits to older adults all over Edmonton.
The program employed four Nurse Practitioners in 2019, and contributed to integrated, wraparound services at Sage which incorporate both health and social components. The benefit of using Nurse Practitioners as the primary providers in the Health Services at Sage model is the opportunity this provides for seniors to discuss the full scope of their health challenges and learn more about managing their own health/wellness concerns.
Because health is about the whole person at Sage, when our patients use our Health Services program, we can also help them with non-medical related issues like housing and financial concerns or connecting them to social supports and opportunities to meet new people and get involved in the Sage community.
Seniors Housing Forum
The Seniors Housing Forum, presented by Age Friendly Edmonton, was held on Saturday, September 28, 2019 at the Central Lions Seniors Recreation Centre. The event was attended by over 800 people, who received information and resources that expanded their knowledge of housing options in the Capital region, and enabled them to make more informed choices regarding this critical topic.
This annual event continues to be important, as increasing numbers of "Boomers" reach retirement age and beyond, and need to make decisions about where and how they want to live. This informative, free event provides seniors, their families, and caregivers with an excellent opportunity to learn more about housing and related resources that support older adults in the Greater Edmonton area. The Seniors Housing Forum also provided education and support to those considering things like supportive and facility living, others who want to downsize or adapt their current homes, and those who are just beginning to think about this next phase.
Seniors Health & Wellness Forum
On Saturday, November 2, over 650 seniors packed the Central Lions Seniors Recreation Centre for the Seniors Health & Wellness Forum - a free, one-day event where attendees obtained information and resources related to the health, wellness, and social supports vital to aging in place.
To develop sessions for the Forum, Sage and a committee of community partners used the guide Thinking About Your Future? Plan Now to Age in Place—A Checklist released by the Forum of Federal/Provincial/ Territorial Ministers Responsible for Seniors. The checklist covers important points, like how seniors plan to take care of their physical and mental health, where seniors plan to live as they age, how they plan to get around, how they will afford to live after retirement, how they plan to stay connected and safe, and how they will access necessary services and supports.
Sage would like to thank the many sponsors, exhibitors, speakers, and volunteers who helped to make these Forums a success!
Our Wonderful Volunteers
Did you know that 336 people volunteered for Sage in 2019, and that together they logged over 23,000 volunteer hours? That's a lot! Simply put, we couldn't do what we do without them.
Volunteer Appreciation events at Sage were held in April and December. The spring event, held during National Volunteer Week, had a theme of “birds of a feather, volunteer together” from the Welsh proverb "birds of a feather, flock together". Volunteers were treated to a sit down lunch, served by staff and student volunteers. Entertainment followed the meal and volunteers received a small gift. In December, we tried something new - a Volunteer Christmas Party Brunch - where students from Norquest’s Transitions to Employment Program assisted with decorating and setting up the auditorium, and helped serve the brunch alongside Sage staff on the day of the event. For entertainment, we had the Richard Eaton Songsters - a small group of choristers associated with the Richard Eaton Singers, a premier symphonic choir - lead our guests in a Christmas carol sing-a-long. Their dulcet tones helped to brighten everyone's spirits during the holiday season!
The volunteers at Sage have built a supportive, caring community, making Sage feel like a second home. Our annual volunteer appreciation events are an opportunity to show our volunteers how much we value their work and dedication , and to celebrate their enormous contributions to the organization. Thank you!