Grocery pickups and other supports available for Shuswap seniors living at home

BC 211 is another way to connect with Shuswap Better at Home program

Connecting seniors to resources and supports available through local programs such as Shuswap Better At Home is now as easy as dialing 211.

On Thursday, March 26, the B.C. government announced it would be broadening the reach of the provincial helpline to support seniors during the COVID-19 pandemic. Previously only available in the Lower Mainland, the number can now be used by seniors in the Interior to connect with available community programs or services.

“If you are a senior or the family member of a senior who needs help getting groceries, getting medications and staying connected, call 211 or visit the website and we’ll try to match you up with a volunteer or some kind of service in your community,” announced B.C. seniors’ advocate Isobel Mackenzie.

One of those services that seniors in the North Okanagan-Shuswap may be referred to is the United Way’s Better at Home program.

Heather O’Brien, regional co-ordinator for the Shuswap (which covers an area that includes Chase, the North and South Shuswap, Salmon Arm, Sicamous, Malakwa and Falkland), explains the program provides supports for seniors living independently that include pickup and delivery of groceries, prescriptions and food bank or meals program offerings, check-in phone calls, housekeeping services and some yard work.

With the onset of COVID-19, availability of some of those services, such as housekeeping, is currently on hold.

“Some of our housekeeping staff in Enderby is still going to do those types of services… because we have quite a few clients there,” said O’Brien of the largely volunteer driven service. “In other communities, it’s mostly co-ordinators taking on that work right now because a lot of our volunteers are also seniors. They’re trying protect their health and just keep everyone comfortable and safe.”

Read more: B.C. 211 hotline expands to link COVID-19 homebound seniors, volunteers

Read more: Supporting seniors in their homes

With the announcement of the 211 expansion, O’Brien said she’s already had a couple of callers referred to her, both from Salmon Arm. One was a senior who is now signed up with the program, and the other a prospective volunteer. O’Brien notes volunteers are vetted and undergo a criminal background check. With COVID-19, O’Brien is hoping more people will take an interest in volunteering, noting there are currently no volunteers working for the program in Salmon Arm. She says there’s no pressure on volunteers, whose work may involve doing deliveries or just checking in on seniors with a phone call.

“We are managing OK right now but we certainly do appreciate anyone that is wanting to volunteer to connect with us, and maybe it will end up being a situation where they’ll stick around and they can end up volunteering down the road if needed,” said O’Brien.

If anybody needs help, or knows of a neighbour who needs help, O’Brien invites them to contact Shuswap Better At Home by calling 250-253-2749, or emailing sbahintake@outlook.com.

“We will definitely be in touch with them, we will let them know what we can do and hopefully we will be able to give them any other information they need,” said O’Brien.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

#Salmon Arm

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

About one-sixth of students in School District 83 choose to ‘restart’ June 1

Superintendent of schools expects numbers may increase as word of safety protocols spreads

Drugs, machete found in truck with stolen plate driven by Salmon Arm man

Chase RCMP arrest driver and have vehicle towed

Column: Shuswap Emergency Program an important asset for region

Council Report by City of Salmon Arm Councillor Kevin Flynn

Trial of accused in Salmon Arm church shooting expected to be brief

Crown won’t dispute not criminally responsible by way of a mental disorder defence

Okanagan home sales increase over last month, still below 2019 numbers: OMREB

Sales, listings see increase over May’s numbers but dwindle in comparison to 2019

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

Princeton RCMP sergeant kills cougar threatening residential neighborhood

An RCMP officer shot and killed a cougar, close to a residential… Continue reading

Pilot project approved: Penticton to allow alcohol in outdoor spaces

For almost two hours, council debated the proposed pilot project, before eventually passing it 4-2

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

Top cop calls video of Kelowna Mountie striking suspect ‘concerning’

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

HERGOTT: Can you get money back if COVID-19 disrupts plans?

Paul Hergott is a personal injury lawyer based in West Kelowna

Most Read