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Seniors Community Programs

Healthy Safe and Strong Program

Call intake to register for an in-person class. Online classes are also available.

Register for an online class

Seniors Community Programs offers a variety of social, wellness and outreach services to older adults. Programs are intended to help older adults remain safe and independent at home for as long as possible.

We offer the following non-medical programs to support seniors, their families and caregivers. Programs include in-person group sessions, in-home services and online programming.

Information and Registration

For general inquiries or to register for these programs, call the Seniors Community Intake Line at 905-984-2621 or 1-877-212-3922.

In-person group sessions

  • Adult Day Program

    Helping older adults stay physically active, cognitively stimulated and socially connected.

    The Adult Day Program offers a safe atmosphere where seniors can socialize and engage in meaningful programming. Program content encourages clients to reminisce, take notice, learn something new and participate in fun and meaningful activity.

    Exercise class is designed to get clients active and promote physical health and wellness. Caregivers can benefit from valuable respite and peace of mind.

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Valid Ontario Health Card
    • Doesn't live in a long-term care facility

    Suitability

    • Ready and willing to attend the program regularly
    • Able to tolerate and appropriately participate in a group setting
    • Doesn't exhibit behaviours that pose a risk to self or others
    • Doesn't consistently need one-to-one programming or services
    • Medically stable

    Hours

    We offer planned programming in three hour, half day sessions Monday to Friday at 9 a.m. - noon or 1 - 4 p.m.

    Cost

    A daily user fee is billed monthly. Contact Seniors Community Programs for more information and current rates.

    Locations

    • Fort Erie: 660 Garrison Road, Unit 10
    • St. Catharines: 350 Ontario St.
    • Niagara-on-the-Lake: 14 Anderson Ln. (Community Centre)
    • Niagara Falls: 6623 Kalar Rd.
    • Port Colborne: 2 Fielden Ave.
    • Welland: 920 Pelham St.
    • West Niagara: 18 Livingston Ave.
  • Healthy, Safe and Strong Exercise Program

    This is a group exercise program that helps older adults live active, healthy and independent lives. The program provides free group exercise programs delivered by certified personal trainers. Exercises are intended to support and improve activities of daily living.

    The service aims to:

    • Improve and / or maintain strength
    • Prevent age-related muscle loss
    • Build balance to decrease risk of falls
    • Enhance confidence getting around
    • Support overall health by providing access to health and wellness education and other resources that will help maintain long-term independence

    Program structure

    Classes run for approximately 50 minutes. Each class has elements of cardio, strength, balance and flexibility / mobility. Seated and standing exercise options are available.

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Live in Ontario
    • Valid Ontario Health Card
    • Can follow instructions and self-determine necessary modifications suitable to your personal health limitations
    • May be at risk for falls or have experienced a fall(s)

    Location and hours

    Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. - 4 p.m.

    Classes are offered one day per week at locations across Niagara. Contact us to find out if we're in a location near you. In person class sizes have limited capacity.

    Cost

    Free

  • South Niagara Health and Wellness Centre

    This program helps older adults live active, healthy and independent lives. The South Niagara Health and Wellness Centre is a partnership of community and health care providers offering rehabilitation, wellness education and community resource connections to help older adults become healthier, safer and stronger.

    The service provides opportunities for older adults to:

    • Access professional services, such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy and speech language pathology
    • Build strength, balance and confidence through exercise
    • Socialize with others who are motivated to stay healthy, safe and strong
    • Learn about health and wellness
    • Learn about resources available to support independence and health
    • Interact with students through classroom experiences

    Program structure

    The program combines exercise, wellness and group participation. Sessions are focused on helping older adults achieve optimal mobility, function in their daily activities, communicate effectively, and make them as independent as possible.

    Eligibility

    • 60 years of age or over
    • Live in Ontario
    • Valid Health Card or eligible to receive an Ontario Health Card
    • Can follow instructions and self-determine necessary modifications suitable to your personal health limitations
    • Can engage in conversation and are independent in decision making
    • May be at risk for falls or have experienced a fall(s)

    Suitability

    • Medically stable
    • Able to transfer independently or with one person assisting

    Exclusionary criteria

    Participants referred by a physician to the Hotel Dieu Shaver Ambulatory Rehab Program may not be required to self determine modifications, be independent in decision making or be 60 years or older. An assessment is required.

    Location and hours

    This program has a start and end date and runs twice a week for up to twelve weeks.

    234 Bunting Rd., St. Catharines

    Session are offered Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. - noon or 1 - 4 p.m.

    Cost

    Free

    How to register

    Register for a pop-up Wellness Series.

    For entry through the rehabilitation stream, a physician referral is needed. Visit Hotel Dieu Shaver - South Niagara Health and Wellness Centre.

    Partner agencies

    The centre is operated through a partnership of community and health care providers, including:

    • Hotel Dieu Shaver Health and Rehabilitation Centre
    • Niagara College
    • March of Dimes Canada
    • Home and Community Care Support Services Hamilton Niagara Haldimand Brant

In-home services

  • Outreach Services

    Community workers offer short-term service navigation support to older adults to help them stay safe and independent in their own home.

    A community worker provides service either in-person, over the telephone, or virtually. Visits can be arranged at the senior's home or in an alternate location. Services are provided upon consent from the older adult.

    Community workers can coordinate referrals on behalf of the older adult to improve safety, independence and quality of life. Outreach services include:

    • Client intervention and assistance
    • Supporting independent living
    • Niagara Gatekeepers Program

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Valid health card or be eligible to receive an Ontario Health Card
    • Have an age-related illness

    Referrals to community services may include:

    • Falls prevention through exercise (Healthy, Safe and Strong)
    • Adult Day Program
    • Respite Companion Program
    • Meal services
    • Specialized services, such as Alzheimer Society and mental health services
    • Transportation services

    Cost

    Suggested service plan may result in fees.

  • Respite Companion Program

    This program provides an in-home respite companion for persons living with Alzheimer's or other progressive dementia and their care partners. Respite companions are trained to provide activities, tailored to the clients' interests.

    Regular scheduled visits aim to provide stimulation to enrich lives through social connection. We believe it's important for care partners to be able to step away from this role on a regular basis. This program provides opportunities for the care partner to use the time away from their role to focus on other tasks or take time for themselves.

    Program focus

    • Engage in activities that bring enjoyment, purpose and meaning to the individual's life
    • Provide interactions that help prolong functioning, social connection and enhanced self-esteem which may decrease feelings of depression or loneliness
    • Offer companionship, reassurance and supervision while the primary caregiver is otherwise engaged

    Eligibility

    This program is funded to provide support for older adults with a diagnosis of Alzheimer's disease or a progressive dementia.

    Clients must:

    • Live in Niagara
    • Have a valid health card or be eligible to receive an Ontario Health Card
    • Be willing to allow a companion into their home

    If clients experience occasional challenging behaviours, we ask that they're able to respond well to our redirection. If clients need support with medication prompts, it must be in a blister pack prepared by a pharmacy.

    Clients shouldn't have been deemed eligible for crisis placement in long-term care by Home and Community Care.

    Hours

    Regular weekly scheduled visits are arranged based on the client's preference, up to a maximum of 20 hours per week (based on availability). The minimum length of any visit is three hours.

    Cost

    A fee for service applies. Contact the Seniors Community Programs intake line for accurate rates. Participants may be eligible for a reduced rate based on income. Ask for details when applying.

Online programs

  • Healthy, Safe and Strong Exercise Program

    This is a group exercise program that helps older adults live active, healthy and independent lives. The program delivers free group exercise by certified personal trainers in the privacy and comfort of your own home using Zoom. Exercises are intended to support and improve activities of daily living.

    The service aims to:

    • Improve and / or maintain strength
    • Prevent age-related muscle loss
    • Build balance to decrease risk of falls
    • Enhance confidence getting around
    • Support overall health by providing access to health and wellness education and other resources that will help maintain long-term independence

    Program structure

    Each class has elements of cardio, strength, balance and flexibility / mobility and run for approximately 50 minutes.

    Standing classes are intended for individuals who maintain moderate levels of physical activity and / or are looking to challenge themselves at their own pace. Seated classes are intended for individuals who are either new to exercise and / or are deconditioned and building a foundation of physical activity.

    An optional additional class is available for registered participants on Wednesday mornings at 10 a.m.

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Live in Ontario
    • Valid Ontario Health Card
    • Can follow instructions and self-determine necessary modifications suitable to your personal health limitations
    • May be at risk for falls or have experienced a fall(s)
    • Access to technology and Internet connection
    • Able to register for classes online
    • Able to independently modify instruction to your level of capability

    Reasons to participate online

    • No need for transportation
    • No need to worry about weather
    • Opportunity for an increased variety of classes
    • Choice between a seated or standing program
    • Weekly program updates
    • Access to other online programs
    • Two or more classes per week

    Location and hours

    All classes are on Zoom.

    • Standing classes: Monday and Thursday at 9 a.m. or 10:30 a.m.
    • Seated classes: Monday and Thursday at 1 p.m.

    How to register

    Online registration is open for 2022.

    Register for an online Healthy, Safe and Strong session.

    For more information about online sessions and telephone-based classes, call 905-980-6000 ext. 3844 or email Healthy, Safe and Strong.

    It's important to consult with your physician before starting any exercise regime.

  • Niagara Aphasia Program

    This specialized program is offered in 90 minute sessions weekly through Zoom and provides small supportive conversation groups for individuals with aphasia (communication difficulties related to a brain injury or stroke). Online classes are for individuals who are registered clients of service or on a waitlist for service.

    Programs are guided by a speech language pathologist and communication disorder assistant to help clients communicate with increased confidence and promote community reintegration strategies.

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older or have an age-related illness
    • Valid Ontario Health Card
    • Doesn't live in a long-term care facility

    Suitability

    • Ready and willing to attend the program regularly
    • Able to tolerate and appropriately participate in a group setting
    • Doesn't exhibit behaviours that pose a risk to self or others
    • Doesn't consistently need one-to-one programming or services
    • Medically stable

    Location and hours

    The program runs for 90 minutes on Zoom

    Cost

    Free

  • South Niagara Health and Wellness Centre

    This online program combines 30 minutes of exercise and 30 minutes of interactive small group discussions based on a variety of topics related to healthy aging.

    Sessions are focused on helping older adults maintain mobility, function in their daily activities, connect socially and maximize their independence.

    Reasons to participate online:

    • No need for transportation
    • No need to worry about weather
    • Privacy and comfort of your own home
    • Weekly program updates
    • Access to other online programs

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Live in Ontario
    • Valid Health Card or eligible to receive an Ontario Health Card
    • Can follow instructions and self-determine necessary modifications suitable to your personal health limitations
    • Can engage in conversation and are independent in decision making
    • May be at risk for falls or have experienced a fall(s)
    • Medically stable
    • Have Internet and a computer / tablet

    Location and hours

    Sessions are about 90 minutes twice per week on Zoom in the mornings and afternoons, Monday to Thursday. Register to see dates and times.

    Cost

    Free

    How to register

    Register for the online South Niagara Health and Wellness January session.

    For more information, call our wellness resource coordinator at 905-980-6000 ext. 3862 or email Seniors Wellness.

  • Virtual Wellness Services

    Our wellness team has cultivated strong relationships with community partners and agencies across Niagara to offer information and resources that support older adults to stay independent in their communities and engage in relevant topics aimed at achieving optimal health and wellness.

    Guest speakers and presentations are focused on a variety of health and wellness topics relevant to the aging population. Topics are often aligned with seasonal wellness.

    The program provides opportunities for seniors to:

    • Be connected to their communities through direct linkages with local agencies
    • Build knowledge and awareness of available resources
    • Learn how to achieve optimal health and wellness

    Eligibility

    • 60 years or older
    • Live in Ontario
    • Valid Ontario Health Card
    • Able to engage in conversation and are independent in decision making
    • Access to technology and Internet connection
    • Able to register for classes online
    • Able to independently modify instruction to your level of capability

    Cost

    Free

    How to register

    Register for December wellness webinars.

    For more information, call our wellness resource coordinator at 905-980-6000 ext. 3862 or email Seniors Wellness.

Niagara Gatekeepers

Niagara Gatekeepers is a phone line that anyone in the community can call to help connect at-risk older adults with programs and services.

Know a senior who may need the help of an agency? Call 905-684-0968, 8:30 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.

Funding and partnerships

Program funding is supported through Ontario Health.

Seniors Community Programs partners with other agencies to further support efforts for healthy living in our community and aging at home.

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