It has been a year since SAGE launched Companion Calls, and so far, over 200 calls between seniors and SAGE volunteers have been facilitated. SAGE would like to thank our community partners, including The O’Neill Centre, Ivan Franko Homes, and Progress Place, for making this program available to their residents and members. SAGE’s volunteer community is quickly growing and to celebrate this, SAGE held our very first volunteer social event, called Community of Practice. During this event, SAGE volunteers and executives shared their unique experiences interacting with the elderly, including life lessons they have acquired and what a typical call looks like with their companion. It comes with no surprise that the calls have been beneficial for both volunteers and seniors by alleviating pandemic-induced social isolation and having a friendly conversation to look forward to every week. SAGE plans to hold more volunteer socials in the future, where people from the community can share their insight and experiences with others who share the same desire to support senior wellbeing.
We are excited to announce our newest partner organization for Companion Calls: Progress Place! Progress Place is a psychosocial rehabilitation centre that supports adults recovering from mental illness by providing hope, opportunity, community, and so much more. Every week, 5 of our SAGE volunteers, Sinamys, Jessica, Vienna, Sneha, and Maham, connect with members of Progress Place’s seniors program via telephone
We are so grateful to Progress Place for the opportunity to work together and to our volunteers for their time and dedication. You can learn more about Progress Place and the incredible work they do at progressplace.org!
Shamayal recently took a course at the University of Toronto called HMB440, dementia, taught by Dr. Franco Taverna. Her involvement in research in dementia really sparked her interest in the field, motivating her to take this course to learn more about the disease and how it affects individuals...
As we emerge from the third COVID-19 wave in Ontario, we want to thank our dedicated Companion Calls volunteers placed at Ivan Franko Homes...
Shannon started volunteering with SAGE in January after being enrolled in Dementia (HMB440) at the University of Toronto. She participated in Companion Calls, meeting with a resident every week at The O’Neill Centre over video chat. She shared her travel memories, her passions, and her career goals with the resident she spoke with. To commemorate the life history of the resident, Shannon made a collage that included pictures of the resident's favourite foods, travel memories, and quotes. Shannon’s interest in geriatrics and dementia research made her seek out this opportunity at The O’Neill Centre and she plans to continue her volunteering throughout the summer while working for the Canadian Coast Guard in Vancouver Island. Her passion for research led her to pursue graduate studies in primary glioblastoma and recurrent tumors at the University of Calgary in the fall. SAGE is excited to see what Shannon accomplishes in her research career and we thank her for her continued dedication to elderly care!