Elder Friendly Communities

Elder Friendly Communities are cultivated using a classic grassroots Community Development model.

We take the time to find out what’s meaningful to community members: from being able to take transit to see friends to actively advocating and lobbying for city-wide social justice concerns. Then we work within that range to help participants uncover personal strengths.

We name those strengths, lift them up, and find ways to create positive change within communities and for community members.

carya facilitates five Elder Friendly Communities throughout Calgary.

Greenwood Enrichment Network (GEN)

GEN people are community leaders who are enriching their neighbourhood and the lives of their neighbours by:

  • Being trustworthy companions
  • Making the most of our beautiful location
  • Being active and engaged
  • Bringing artists together
  • Sharing services with each other
  • Making sure that everyone has nutritious food
  • Learning for life

GEN people have regular, weekly meet-ups for exercise, learning and more.

Please contact Joan Bever Joanb@caryacalgary.ca or call 403-205-5279 to learn more.

ACT III

ACT III members are creating change within the Northwest and Northeast communities surrounding Centre Street by:

  • Embracing the whole community: older adults, families, people from diverse cultures and all those seeking connections
  • Identifying needs
  • Holding meaningful conversations
  • Generating enthusiasm
  • Facilitating action to become the most inclusive and welcoming community possible

ACT III members volunteer with CUPS and Calgary Reads and have launched a program for sharing services called Neighbours helping Neighbours. They also partner with the Unitarian Church to run a new community kitchen program called Caring Cooking Connections.

ACT III members meet regularly for yoga, learning and more.

Please contact Joan Bever Joanb@caryacalgary.ca or call 403-205-5279 to learn more.

Starbright Grandmas of Pineridge and Dover

The Starbright Grandmas have been developing relationships with Grade 6 girls for four years.

The Starbright program is operated by Carya Calgary in partnership with the Calgary Board of Education to help girls build capacity and develop essential building blocks to foster healthy decision making and positive peer interactions.

Each Starbright grandma is matched with a Starbright girl for 4 weeks in an after-school program that focuses on story-telling, fun activities, and creating some special crafts together.

Please contact Joan Bever Joanb@caryacalgary.ca or call 403-205-5279 to learn more.

Northeast Support Group

The Northeast Support Group meets regularly within the Northeast community for exercise, cultural exchange, learning and workshops, singing and craft-making.

Groups are generally taken in Cantonese.

Please contact Anita Chow AnitaC@caryacalgary.ca or call 403-619-5371 to learn more.

Elder Friendly East Village

Reaching into a condensed resident population of over 800 older adults, the Elder Friendly Community of East Village looks to provide meaningful connections for residents while addressing social isolation using leadership and confidence development. 

The East Village Seniors Drama Group meets weekly to laugh at themselves and have fun while practicing communication and expression through acting games. They also work on storytelling as they create, rehearse, and perform original pieces of theatre. The group is open and inclusive and takes new members on an ongoing basis – no experience or performance required!

The Pony Express letter-writing exchange program partners East Village seniors with junior high students in Calgary in a pen pal relationship. This monthly exchange of hand-written letters and cards brings light into the lives of the participants, allowing them to connect to another generation, relive or share memories and practice communication skills in ways that can become forgotten or overlooked in our new age of technology. This program is also open and accepts new members.

Please contact Cherie Ratte: CherieR@caryacalgary.ca or call 403-705-7564 to learn more.


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