$367,000 will be invested into 15 NWT community-based projects through the federal New Horizons for Seniors program .
Projects range from a senior-led initiative to “rebuild a sense of community” at a Fort Smith Anglican church after the Covid-19 pandemic to a subsidized curling program in Yellowknife.
Other programs include:
- an Elders’ council run by the Knowledge Keepers of Tulita;
- cultural activities such as berry picking and spending time on the land through the Tuktoyaktuk Community Elders program;
- a seniors’ social activity program operating in Enterprise, Kakisa, Hay River, and the Kátł’odeeche and West Point First Nations; and
- the creation of an outdoor cooking area at the Woodland Manor long-term care facility in Hay River.
Collège Nordique will receive $25,000 to continue Tłı̨chǫ classes. In a news release, Rosie Benning – language school manager at Collège Nordique – expressed hope that participants would sign up for her organization’s language and cultural exchange program “and continue to put reconciliation into action.”
“The cross-cultural experiences between Indigenous Elders and people across the NWT have been so meaningful for the communities,” Benning said in a statement. “As Elders and seniors share their knowledge of their culture and language, we are taking important steps toward language revitalization.”
The federal government says projects it funds are meant to improve seniors’ quality of life by encouraging them to stay active and engaged in their communities. Projects fall under four national priorities: supporting healthy ageing, preventing senior abuse, celebrating diversity and promoting inclusion, and helping seniors to age in place.
“Our seniors can share knowledge, skills and experience on an intergenerational level, and have an active social life that has been missing during the pandemic,” said Angela Broadhead, a representative of the Hay River Health and Social Services Authority, which will develop the Woodland Manor outdoor cooking area with the help of $25,000.