Every year on June 15th, the Revelstoke Community Response Network (CRN) educates the community on elder abuse and neglect, and raises awareness around World elder Abuse Awareness Day (WEAAD), an international day of recognition for the growing issue, as proclaimed by the United Nations. The day has also been proclaimed by the Province of British Columbia as a day to bring greater understanding and recognition of the abuse and neglect of older adults in British Columbia and the world.
Take Time for Seniors is an awareness raising video on elder abuse, which was produced by local film producer, FD productions, and features local youth Claire Brown and Aiden Hill, as well as a number of seniors in the community. The video is meant to build empathy, curiosity and interest towards seniors and their stories. It asks youth to reflect on their views of seniors through the simple question “what do you think about seniors?” and invites them to slow down and take time for them.
For Brown, it was a great learning experience, and a good reminder of the value seniors bring. “It was a really fun experience to be a part of this, and I know it was for a good cause,” she says. “After all we should always acknowledge and respect our elders and their contribution to our community.”
The CRN, which is a network of local organizations that work together to create a coordinated response to adult abuse and neglect, has been offering intergenerational programing and working to connect youth and seniors together for the past two years. Due to the pandemic, the CRN’s usual intergenerational programing activities had to be modified to adhere to safety protocols. Instead of visits to Moberly Manor, students wrote letters, did outdoor chalk and window art, and created an art walk with poems and drawings for the seniors.
For many older adults, the COVID-19 pandemic has increased their isolation and vulnerability. World Elder Abuse Awareness Day is an important day to remind us to look out for our community’s vulnerable adults.
As part of its programing, the CRN also provides community and business training, as well as education and prevention activities on elder abuse and neglect in the community. The CRN project is housed by the Revelstoke Women’s Shelter because of its abuse component. Elderly women are among the most vulnerable to abuse and neglect.
FD productions: http://francoisproductions.com/