Empowering older British Columbians is the main focus of funding announced today by Attorney General Suzanne Anton and Port Moody-Coquitlam MLA Linda Reimer on behalf of Health Minister Terry Lake.
The Province has provided $130,000 to S.U.C.C.E.S.S., one of B.C.’s largest social services agencies, for a program that assists Korean and Iranian seniors to adapt to Canadian society, as well as the organization’s annual health fair.
“This funding will help make sure that foundations are in place to help multicultural families and seniors stay healthy and connected to their communities,” said Lake. “The popular S.U.C.C.E.S.S. health fair and seniors’ enrichment program provide up-to-date disease prevention information and the tools to be more independent and aware of available services.”
The seniors’ enrichment program offers English lessons, basic computer and cellphone classes, and Canadian lifestyle orientation for older British Columbians who speak Korean or Farsi. The program is offered in the Lower Mainland.
“Welcoming new Canadians to British Columbia with open arms is part of what defines us as province,” said Anton. “We reach out to those who face obstacles when it comes to making their way comfortably, especially seniors – and today’s announcement will assist older adults in overcoming barriers, so they can seamlessly transition to B.C. society.”
“Seniors have told me they enjoy being self-reliant, and a part of this is feeling confident when they are out in the community,” said Parliamentary Secretary for Seniors Darryl Plecas. “Today’s announcement will assist older adults with language and cultural hurdles, and help them get out in the community.”
“It can be tough for older people to adjust when they move to a new country. Family members tell me about the importance of the seniors’ enrichment program and how it helps them adapt, feel comfortable and enjoy their new surroundings,” said Reimer.
S.U.C.C.E.S.S.’ annual health fair offers disease prevention education in English, Cantonese and Mandarin. It features informational exhibits, blood pressure, eye pressure and glaucoma screenings, as well as diabetes consultation. Health-care professionals, such as physicians and dentists, are also available. This year’s health fair took place in Burnaby in September and was attended by over 1,000 people.
“I recognize how vital the health is to families in the area as it provides them with a variety of health information and an opportunity to meet with health-care professionals to learn about healthy living,” said Richard T. Lee, Burnaby-North MLA.
“We really appreciate the support from the Government of B.C.,” said Queenie Choo, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. chief executive officer. “These programs help fill the service gaps in the community, promoting health and wellness in the community as well as social integration among seniors.”
Established in 1973, S.U.C.C.E.S.S. provides services in settlement, language training, employment, family and youth counselling, business and economic development, health care, housing and community development.
For more information on S.U.C.C.E.S.S., please visit www.successbc.ca