Older adults are improving their health while learning about fall prevention thanks to The Vic Foundation and Victoria Lifeline.
We recently granted funds to Ritchot Senior Services to enhance its brand-new fall prevention program. Janice Burnette, the senior resource coordinator for Ritchot Senior Services Centre, is a certified fitness leader who organizes fitness classes for older adults in her community. She started the six-month fall prevention class at the end of August.
“[It’s] bringing awareness to the importance of exercise to staying […] active and mobile and how it will benefit them as they get older,” she said.
Using our grant, Burnette and Ritchot Senior Services Centre purchased heavier weights and new resistance bands. She says humans get weaker as they age, but the new equipment will help improve the physical strength of her senior students.
“In general, people are — more specifically women are — more liable to pick that two- or three-pound weight, not really allowing them to progress in strength,” Burnette said. “The heavier weights [and] the stretch tubing especially will allow them to work a little harder.”
According to Burnette, the program benefits all aspects of health. The exercises will improve strength and fitness, while socialization between classmates improves mental health.
“It becomes not only important for their physical bodies but their mental health,” she said. “They have that bond that they will create and work together as a group for six months.”
Burnette says she hopes the program will help more seniors get out and about.
“I’m hoping to see more active seniors in my community,” she said. “I’m hoping to see more confident seniors even just out in daily life.”
Through our community service Victoria Lifeline, we work closely with senior programs like Ritchot Senior Services to provide our medical alarm service to over 370 communities across Manitoba. In recognition of the important work these organizations do to support the well-being of older adults, we created our Victoria Lifeline health promotion grants program 10 years ago.
Ritchot Senior Services Centre is just one of eight senior service organizations who received a healthy living grant this year through this valuable program. Since the program’s inception, we have supported many deserving organizations who focus on healthy aging in communities like Steinbach, Gladstone, Lundar, and many more. Funds have been used to purchase items such as walking poles for an intergenerational walking program, elevated garden beds, and a Wii system with fitness games.
To learn more about senior programs throughout Manitoba, visit the Province of Manitoba website.
To find out how Victoria lifeline can help you or someone you love remain independent, visit VictoriaLifeline.ca.