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!
We are excited to announce that Companion Calls have launched at the Ivan Franko Homes! With two locations in North York and Mississauga, this home has been caring for seniors since 1964. The seniors at the home are Canadians of Ukrainian descent who continue to practice their cultural traditions and communicate with staff in their native language. The home provides 160 seniors with the option of living in long-term care, assisted living, or independent apartments. In all three models, the homes are small-scale and home-like, giving the seniors a more comfortable and personalized experience. In addition, seniors at the homes can partake in a number of leisurely programs, including Ukrainian Folk Art and outdoor activities. In warmer seasons, seniors have access to greenspace and can enjoy acres of gardens and orchards. Four SAGE volunteers have been making calls with residents at the Ivan Franko Homes and are excited to connect with their new friends. COVID-19 continues to restrict visitations in senior living communities and it is crucial that we find safe alternatives until in-person activities can resume. We thank our volunteers for their continued efforts for supporting our seniors.
We are excited to announce that University of Toronto students taking the course HMB440 (Dementia) have been matched with residents at The O’Neill Centre for Long-Term Care for Companion Calls! In the month of February, 13 calls between HMB440 students and residents were facilitated. Students will continue with their placements at the home for the rest of the semester and can hopefully meet with their new friend in-person once it is safe. HMB440, a course taught by Dr. Franco Taverna, offers a unique community placement at a long-term care home where students can meet with an elderly resident. SAGE executive members who took HMB440 last year had to stop attending their placements when the pandemic began and, unfortunately, remote options were not available at the time. It was clear that residents in long-term care would be subject to isolation, making SAGE members determined to offer safe social programs to alleviate this concern. Through Companion Calls, residents can interact with students, reminisce about their most cherished memories, and make new friends. We thank HMB440 students for keeping the elderly community connected and for putting a smile on the faces of residents with each call!