3 min read

Celebrating Social Prescribing Day and the Impact of Connected Communities

Have you ever considered the profound impact of connection on our well-being? Having strong social support plays a crucial role in maintaining our physical and mental health.

In Alberta, social prescribing continues to gain momentum as a way to improve health outcomes, particularly for those experiencing isolation. As a social impact agency, Carya understands the significance of social prescribing, and we’re thrilled to raise awareness and celebrate its powerful impact on our communities for Social Prescribing Day.

What is social prescribing? It’s a holistic approach to healthcare that bridges the gap between medical and social services. It focuses on addressing the root causes of health concerns by connecting patients with non-medical resources in their communities.

Why is this important? It tackles the underlying factors that influence our health. It recognizes that a person’s well-being can be affected by a range of social, economic, and environmental factors, especially as we get older. By addressing these, social prescribing has the potential to improve both physical and mental health outcomes, allowing older adults with limited natural supports to thrive.

At Carya, we’ve seen the benefits of social prescribing firsthand through our Aging in Community Supports (AICS) program and many other Carya programs and services that address the social determinants of health.

Provided through The Way in Network, a collaboration of Calgary-based agencies dedicated to enhancing the quality of life and access to services and supports for vulnerable older adults, the Aging In Community Supports (AICS) program focuses on improving the coordination of non-health-related services that support healthy aging in the community, aiming to enhance the quality of life for older adults by connecting them to non-medical community-based support. Our AICS team members connect with older adults in their own homes or convenient community locations, providing case management and facilitating connections to these resources.

By connecting vulnerable older adults to non-medical support through The Way in Network, Carya can provide resources as preventative alternatives or enhancements to traditional medical models.

Social Prescribing can lead to improved health benefits by addressing the root causes of health problems and can reduce the need for expensive medical interventions, such as doctor visits, hospital stays, or medications. It also helps individuals access resources they may not have been aware of, particularly those who are experiencing isolation, through initiatives like The Way in Network. This connection to programs and services enhances their quality of life, social connection, and overall well-being.

We invite you to join Carya in celebrating and raising awareness about the impact social prescribing has on our communities.