Long-term care needs a champion organization

Editorial

Wednesday, November 25 2015

Last week, there was a letter to the editor from Peri Smith, suggesting there is a growing need on Gabriola for long-term care housing.

No argument with that is being presented here. Gabriola’s average age continues to climb with each census (even the 2011 short-form one).

If we’re talking long-term care, we should remember while many couples are fortunate to age together, there are also many where one partner or the other requires a higher level of care. Any facility or organization taking on long-term care should be including a way for the partner (if there is one) to also be supported and made part of the care program.

Note: caregivers, there is a support group for you on Gabriola, and it meets monthly. Next meeting is December 2, the rest of the details are in the Events Calendar on page 10.

Within the ongoing discussion at the Trust level about attainable housing, the topic of seniors’ housing will need to be considered.

If nothing else, if we can ‘help’ older members of the community move from their larger homes to a more manageable home (should they wish to do so) then those larger homes also become available for rent or purchase by growing families on Gabriola.

Yes - previous Trustees put it in place that one of the few reasons the island could increase ‘density’ was for seniors and special needs.

But there has to be a financial backing for such a project to take place. And a dedicated group of volunteers to make it happen.

This is what was key to the Community Health Clinic being built, as well as many other Made-On-Gabriola projects.

If there are those who are passionate about making long-term care - anywhere along the aging spectrum - there is no time like the present to join the discussion.