With a growing senior population in the country, a local organization is taking steps to support adult children and their parents. 

Earlier this year, Stats Canada released data showing that the population aged 85 and older is one of the fastest growing age groups, and this group is expected to triple by 2046. 

With that in mind, the Pat Porter Active Living Centre (PPALC) is planning Lunch and Learn events to start later this fall. People are invited to attend, bring lunch or purchase lunch at the centre, and get information from various guest speakers. 

We can expect to soon get details of the Lunch and Learn events. 

Executive Director Audrey Harder says it can strain relationships when parents begin to lose their independence and need to rely on their adult children for support. As caregiver roles change with people looking after their parent's needs, Harder says it can be tough for adult children to navigate. 

“It’s not always easy and it won't be,” she says. “But it's just important to take the time to sit back and look from an outsiders' point of view. You are still their child, and you will always be their child.” 

Harder says respectful conversations are important, with seniors being given the opportunity to have input in decisions for their life. 

She also encourages people to reach out for support, noting that there are many groups and organizations that can offer a lot of support. 

PPALC acts as a hub for a variety of services to allow people to live in their home as independently as possible.  

“We have house cleaning, we have yard maintenance, all for a lower cost than you would normally pay,” says Harder. “And all the people that we have on our list are all people that we trust, people that we know. And we make sure it works out and we are always that middle person if you're having any issues or you need anything extra done. 

“We have transportation programs, if you need to get to a doctor's appointment, grocery shopping, if you can't go out and do grocery shopping, we will help you with that. We can find ways to make that work where we pick up your groceries for you and you pay us after. 

“We have different programs, and we start new ones,” Harder adds. “If you need something and we don't have it, we'll figure it out.” 

PPALC also has people who can help with booking medical appointments online. 

“Call us, we can book that appointment for you while we're on the phone with you,” Harder says. “We can set that up for you, we can get you there, we can do the whole piece that you need.” 

The centre also offers the Meals on Wheels program as well as space and coffee for building friendships. 

“If you're feeling lonely, you just come down. You'll find out more that's going on and you also build friendships and relationships." 

Various support groups hold meetings at PPALC, such as Brain Injury Support Group, there’s a Spousal Care Partner Support Group through the Alzheimer’s Society, 2SLGBTQ+ support group, People Living With Parkinson’s support group, just to name a few. 

Footcare and Hearing clinics also operate out of PPALC. 

To find out more about the supports and services for our seniors and families, contact the Pat Porter Active Living Centre. An open house is planned for Wednesday, October 19th from 9am to 9pm. Harder says people are always welcome to stop in and find out about the many resources available to people of all ages.