It's been a busy month on many levels and I appreciate all the help we have received running many activities and from those who attended them. The success of the Drum Circle event last Saturday shows what we are capable of, with 54 seniors, families and all age groups represented from Oakridge and surrounding communities. Real community building at its best!
It highlights that we are doing well, with many young volunteers applying to help run our seniors services, but we urgently need to attract new blood to our OSA board and other OSA leadership positions. Your thoughts and suggestions for candidates would be appreciated. VP Julie and I had a very good meeting last Thursday with administrators Anna and Jessica from Calgary Seniors, together with our eight other Ignite team members. Healthy interactions are beginning to take place and we were complimented on what we have achieved during the pandemic. We subsequently signed a contract covering the next three years of funding to cover much of our administrative costs. OSA is also represented in two seniors and technology projects at the University of Calgary, and has strong connections with other dedicated seniors groups across the city and province. Our reputation for a creative approach to senior care is receiving strong endorsement, including two nominations for Alberta Minister of Seniors awards. Tuesday I’m representing OSA at the Village-to-Village Conference in the USA, with representatives from more than 200 villages world-wide. We will apply for membership shortly, and are likely the only actively engaged Canadian village. Our web site continues to improve as we get more members using the on-line reservation system for Events and Programs. A powerful database behind the main page allows us to follow-up with attendees as we solicit their participation in future events. At Oakridge Community Association (OCA), we have begun encouraging discussions with Gary Davies, who is heading up OCA’s 50th Birthday celebration, on where we might play a part. After all, many of us played a significant part in the formation of Oakridge Community Association in the 1970’s and building the centre. It was a very vibrant community during that formative time. I also received an offer from OCA President Gerry Stoddart to organize some of the hockey ‘old timers’ to come alongside seniors who need help with snow clearing this winter. On Events, we had a highly successful Concert in the Concert in the Garden with Paul Finkleman - thanks to Julie who headed the organization with Elalne from the Oakridge Garden Committee. An equally rewarding turnout for the virtual session wth Bryce Starlite on the TAZA development. Public participation from Oakridge residents through Oakridge Community Association has been largely absent. This is where OSA can take a lead role in future. We welcome your thoughts on local topics or on major projects which OCA might pursue. Planning is taking place for our OSA AGM scheduled for 12:30 p.m. on November 18, 2020 at the Oakridge Community Centre. COVID-19 precautions will be in place, and we plan to run a live feed via Zoom also. Holiday festivities in December could be tough for many this year. Perhaps we can come up with some original and safe ways to celebrate. One thought - to offer ‘PorchTraits' of our seniors, with photographs on their front steps that can be shared with family and friends. Maybe some can safely host a couple of guests. Have an idea? Please let me know. Respectfully Barry