A Message from BSOSS
January 7, 2021
At BSOSS we are continuing to offer programs that provide opportunities to enrich people’s lives and we realize that at these uncertain times we need to keep our communities engaged and connected to get over this together. If you are interested to participate in our online programs and know how we are supporting our families, caregivers and people who are living with dementia, you are most welcome to join us on a drop-in basis. Currently we are routinely offering two online multi-cultural and inter-generational Dementia-friendly programs including The New Dementians (Choir Rehearsal) and Dementia Friendly Café. In both programs you have an opportunity to get connected to your community and see how getting engaged in the music directed by a professional music therapist, could be healing for our bodies and souls.
The New Dementians Choir
Intergenerational, multicultural, dementia friendly choir provides support for inclusion, reduce stress, and depression for people living with memory loss, their families and friends. A Certified Music Therapist directs rehearsals on most Saturdays. The Choir meets on mornings 10:30am to 12:00pm. Members of diverse cultures are welcome to participate.
Dementia Friendly Cafe
The Cafe welcomes people with memory loss or dementia, their families and friends. Participants engage in socializing and facilitated discussion on topics led by guest speakers. Music sessions led by a Certified Music Therapist are included. This drop-in cafe is held on the 2nd Thursday every month, 1:00 to 2:30pm.
We are continuing to support caregivers using Zoom and The New Dementians sing together most Saturday mornings. We are very excited to have brought new members into our singing circle and very excited to bring in more voices. If you are interested to join us please feel free to contact
and we would love to send you the lyric sheets and have you join with us. Our Dementia Friendly Cafe is also continuing to meet via Zoom on the second Thursday of each month.
Do you find yourself needing support with everyday IT and tech from time to time? Contact YWCA TechLink for free, friendly tech support!
YWCA TechLink is a free IT and tech support service based in Vancouver, staffed by Lower Mainland residents who have a background in technology. TechLink will be offering free IT and tech support over the phone and virtually, to support you with any general tech-related queries you might have, such as how to set up devices, make video calls, access government services, and more.
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Opportunities Await You
Hello Friends of BSSOS. As the impact of Covid19 continues to impact our daily lives in many ways we are also experiencing some resumption of normal activities. Dentists, hair salons, cafes, provide us with an opportunity to visit services that were once just a normal part of our day to day lives. Your social bubbles are hopefully expanding cautiously too. We are hearing of the joy of grandparents getting together with young ones, book clubs meeting in the park. There have been some local agencies providing in the park tutorials and gatherings too. Finding opportunities that relieve some of the isolation we have embraced feels like a positive move.
At BSOSS we are continuing to work on offering programs that provide opportunities to enrich lives. BSOSS was selected to be a site for the Ministry of Health’s Healthy Aging program. As we began to develop the programs that this new funding would support the shut down in March brought us to a halt. All of the programs we had designed and envisioned involved meeting together in our beautiful space at 2055 Rosser Ave.
We are hoping that these opportunities will open new doors to connect with others as a participant or a volunteer. Let us know your ideas for additional topics.
Virtual Mental Health Supports During COVID-19
To support British Columbians of all ages during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Province is expanding existing mental health programs and launching new services. More information can be found here.
Staying Connected in Meaningful Ways
As we have continued to adapt to Covid19 I have been seeking out information regarding how seniors are managing. April 24, John Leland published a thought provoking article in the New York Times titled, “I like It, Actually: Why So Many Older People Thrive in Lockdown.” Leland goes on to say “… the corona virus has been especially punishing for older people, isolating them in their homes or killing them at disproportionate rate…Yet many New Yorkers in this age group are thriving during this catastrophe -skilled at being alone, not fearful about their career prospects, emotionally more experienced at managing the great disruption of everyday life that is affecting everyone….they offer a counter narrative of resourcefulness and perseverance.”
The article goes on to say, research has shown that as a group older adults have a positivity bias, or tendency to see the good side of situations, said, Gary M. Kennedy director of geriatric psychiatry at Montefiore Medical Centre and professor at Albert Einstein College of Medicine. He said, “Their pessimism and anxiety tend to abate with age. They’re no longer striving for material achievements.”
As a senior can you relate to some of the sentiments expressed in Leland’s article? Each of us is experiencing the dramatic adjustments to our day to day lives as we practice physical distancing, and make choices that contribute to the well being of British Columbia as shared by Dr. Bonnie Henry. What are some examples of your resourcefulness and tips for perseverance during these times? We would love to hear from you and share them with others.
Attitude can be such a powerful factor in how we experience life’s events. In the 1800’s Emile Coue a French pharmacist experimented with what he called optimistic autosuggestion by placing the following instructions in half of the orders, ‘every day in every way I am getting better and better.’ He was curious if belief could influence outcome. In following up with the patients he indeed discovered those who followed the mantra reported increased feelings of wellness compared to the group that did not receive the mantra. A great example of a resource available when we focus on the potential power of our own attitude.
As physical distancing remains the best way to protect everyone’s health BSOSS is no longer able to offer the many face to face programs we specialize in. We want to continue to connect with you using email, telephone or virtually platforms.
Faryar and I are looking forward to talking with you to learn more about how you are managing as well as how to offer meaningful supports to you as seniors, family caregivers, and those wishing to live well in our dementia friendly community.
Dorothy and Faryar
A Message of Well Being
Dear Friends of Burnaby Seniors Outreach,
I am hoping that everyone is finding ways to stay physically and emotionally healthy as we cope with the Covid19 virus.
These are times that are testing our resilience and our resolve individually, as a community, a province and a nation. I have been amazed at the mutual respect I see as we adhere to Dr. Bonnie Henry’s briefings in how to best contain the spread of this virus.
We humans are hard wired for a variety of responses to stress. The best known response is known as the flight or fight response. When faced with danger we often choose between fleeing or standing our ground and defending ourselves. When it comes to an invisible virus less than half the diameter of a hair, our best defense has been to follow the advice of the experts--who knew that hand washing was a great fight strategy?
COVID-19: Website for Burnaby Residents on How and Where to Seek Care
Burnaby residents and patients of Burnaby Physicians and Nurse Practitioners can access the website burnabycoronavirus.com for information about how and where to seek care regarding COVID-19.
This is a new website, hosted by the Burnaby Primary Care Network, in collaboration with the City and other service providers. Currently, it offers a link to the COVID19 self-assessment tool, which steers people who may be sick to the appropriate course of action, including telephone and video conference consultation with a physician, and screening appointments where appropriate. Soon, the site will be expanded to include links to the various services available for people who have been affected socially and financially by the Coronavirus. The site is constantly being updated to stay in compliance with the latest information and criteria from the BC Centre for Disease Control. It is an excellent, accurate, and up-to-date resource.
BC Expands 211 Hotline to Pair Seniors with Volunteers
You can now call 2-1-1 or visit www.bc211.ca if you are a senior in need, or would like to volunteer with a senior in your community to check in on them or help pick-up groceries/prescriptions. The helpline takes calls 7 days/week to help keep seniors safe.
To read more on what extra measures the BC Government is doing to help seniors and bolster seniors’ supports at community service agencies in the province click here.
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