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GWSA COVID-19 Pandemic Response Update - June 22

Welcome to the GWSA Email Updates

As we enter the first week of summer, we can express gratitude for how amazingly well we have adapted in recent months to so much change. Frequently, pandemics have been followed by better and often more enlightened times. We are still in the midst of this, of course. Eventually, an improved, more appreciative, and more tolerant world may emerge. For now, we can look forward to a fresh new season and a chance to celebrate all that is Canadian!  Canada Day will be a bit different this year, and we’ll share some interesting activities to help mark the occasion.
You are receiving this message because you are a member of the GWSA or because you have subscribed. We hope you find it interesting and you can unsubscribe at any time using the link at the end.
You can forward this newsletter to a friend here or they can join our mailing list on the website.   


Hearing Loss and Aging - Webinar

Canadian Hearing Services celebrates Seniors Month by presenting “Hearing Loss and Aging during COVID-19”, a webinar for older adults and caregivers, on Wednesday, June 24, 2020 from 2:00 to 3:00pm. Communication Access Real time Translation will be provided. The webinar can be accessed via telephone or video.
Participants will learn: 
  • Understanding hearing loss and aging.
  • Communication strategies over the phone.
  • Communication during COVID-19.
  • Basic troubleshooting of hearing aids.
  • How counsellors can help.
  • Programs and supports we are providing during the pandemic.  
Register for the webinar here.

GWSA Quilters - Mask Sales

The GWSA Quilters plan to sell reusable cloth face masks on Tuesday, June 23 from 10am-12pm outside the front door of the Evergreen Centre for five dollars each, much like a ‘porch pickup’. The group has various styles and designs, including Canadiana fabric for Canada Day.  
The group will keep available masks protected in containers behind the samples so buyers can select the colours or patterns while vendors handle the product. Sellers will be wearing gloves and masks. A small handout is available to each buyer on how to treat their mask(s). Payment can be made by cash, credit, or debit. Building access will not be available. Due to the personal nature of face masks, they are non-returnable. We look forward to seeing you.   


Art on the Street - Until July 4

For the next week, you can visit Guelph’s contemporary art exhibition and craft sale virtually.
Shop, visit the gallery, and meet many of the artists who offer paintings, sculpture, fibre art, jewellery, pottery, prints, and glass. If you get hungry while browsing, the site will even connect you to some local eateries that offer take-out, delivery, or curbside pick-up!  There is also information on a range of business sponsors that offer everything from comics to olive oil.
More information is available here.


June is National Indigenous History Month

In June, Canada celebrates the heritage, diverse cultures and outstanding achievements of First Nations, Inuit and Métis. Learn about inspiring Indigenous peoples who have helped shape Canadian history. Read about the history of Indigenous peoples in Canada, Indigenous contributions to the War of 1812, reconciliation and more.  
Learn more here


June 27 - Canadian Multiculturalism Day

June 27 is Canadian Multiculturalism Day, an invitation to celebrate diversity and the wealth of cultures in Canada!   Discover the various cultures that bring Canadian society to life by participating in the virtual activities happening across the country!  Learn more about the importance of multiculturalism in Canada.  
Canada—Multiculturalism Day


GWSA Succession Planning

The GWSA Succession Planning Committee is recruiting potential board members. With our Annual General Meeting September 15, now is a perfect opportunity to forward your name or recommend a friend to become involved. At this critical time we are especially interested in seniors with fundraising or technology management experience. We also have committees that can benefit from your skills in policy development, meeting functions, note taking, legal matters, and audio visual and tech support. This can be a rewarding way to contribute experience, and participate in a way that makes a real difference to your community.

To share your interests, please email:
Gail Moore        

GWSA Annual General Meeting

Mark your calendar for GWSA’s Annual General Meeting to be held virtually through Zoom on September 15 at 1:30pm.
For now, you can save the date and more information will be shared on the GWSA website before the meeting. Organizing a virtual meeting will work best if we have your up-to-date information.  You can update that online through Rec Enroll, below.

GWSA - Please Update Your Information

All valid memberships have been extended through the state of emergency.
Please visit to be sure we have your current email address, phone number and mailing address.  In this way we can reach you about member services and important information like the Annual General Meeting. 

You can “Edit your Account” to update any information that is out of date.
If you don’t have a password or have forgotten it just use the “Forgot your password?” link to get a password.   

GWSA - Email Editor Needed

The Membership and Marketing Committee is currently looking for a volunteer with specialized computer skills to help with Email Updates.  This creative role involves producing and distributing occasional newsletters like this one that share timely information with GWSA members and others.  In normal times, these are sent out about once a month between editions of The Sentinel magazine.

If this might interest you, please contact:
Ross Knechtel             or
Connie Shaw               


Inspiration - from the Front Lines of Care

People now understand how well run the Guelph COVID-19 clinic is. They are less fearful of it. They know to be tested not just to be able to see relatives in long-term care, but also if they have any symptoms, if they have been exposed or were at risk of being exposed.
People flood in for testing. Those that test positive are quarantined and cared for over two weeks. Their contacts are traced. Any positive contacts are quarantined too. Those that become quite ill are sent to hospital for assessment and early support with oxygen and fluids. The earlier a patient with progressive symptoms is seen, the greater the likelihood that they will not require ventilation.  
This system of rapid testing, widespread tracing, quarantining and earlier institution of hospital care will allow our medical and public health care teams to keep the virus under lock down. It is our way of locking it down while you move out of lock down. Any early outbreaks are smashed with this technique.
A shout out to Dr. Doug Friars, the physician lead of our COVID-19 clinic. I bet he did not think he would be handing this goliath at this stage of his career. The province is encouraging the provincial testing sites to ramp testing to 40,000 a day. We met the first goal of 20,000. We can meet this goal as well. This is exceptional team work—you are vital members of that team.  

-condensed from Dr. Zajdlik
Read full postings on Anne-Marie Zajdlik’s blog

COVID-19 Announcements

Federal Government

CERB Extension
The Canadian Emergency Response Benefit has been extended from 16 weeks to 24 weeks for workers who:
  • stopped working due to COVID-19, or
  • are eligible for Employment Insurance regular or sickness benefits, or
  • have exhausted their Employment Insurance regular benefits between December 29, 2019 and October 3, 2020.
Apply for the CERB through either Service Canada or the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) but not both. You may be eligible for support via other programs as well.
More information is available here

Ontario Government

Ontario is partnering with the federal government to launch COVID-Alert, a new privacy-first exposure notification app, within the next two weeks. Users will be able to voluntarily download the app and be notified anonymously if they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 14 days.
The app will also provide users with quick access to Ontario's public health advice and resources, and recommend any necessary actions, such as monitoring for symptoms, self-isolation or appropriate next steps on getting tested.
Read the full announcement

Social Circles and Social Gatherings

The Government of Ontario advised last week that we can expand our personal ‘social circle’ to ten people who don’t need to remain socially distanced. To limit the spread of COVID-19 everyone needs to be part of only one social circle. To work, this strategy requires maintaining physical distance of two metres from anyone outside your circle. The total size of all social gatherings is limited to ten.

It is important to follow the guidelines carefully to protect ourselves and others. Here’s how:
Social Circles—Step-by-Step
How to Build a Social Circle

Everyone should continue to follow public health guidelines to stay safe, including physical distancing with people not in your social circle, wearing a face covering if physical distancing is a challenge, washing your hands thoroughly and frequently, and, if you think you have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19, getting tested.
How to Stop the Spread of COVID-19

COVID-19 Assessment

No Ontarian will be declined a test at an assessment centre (either through appointment or walk-in, per the processes of each individual assessment centre), especially those who are symptomatic or who are concerned they have been exposed to COVID-19. Visit Ontario’s website to find your local assessment centre and whether you need to call ahead to make an appointment.
Provincial Updates and News Releases
Get the latest Information here

Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health

Face Coverings Required
Businesses serving the public in Wellington, Dufferin, and Guelph must require customers and employees to wear a mask or face covering. That includes a scarf, bandana, homemade fabric mask or medical mask that covers their nose and mouth. People can remove the mask if required for eating or drinking, or to use services provided by the business.
People may be exempt if they are less than two years old, or if wearing a face covering would inhibit the person’s ability to breathe in any way, or for any other medical reason the person cannot safely wear a face covering.
Businesses must also provide alcohol-based hand rub at all entrances and exits.  
WDG Public Health—COVID-19
How to Wear a Non-medical Mask Safely

City of Guelph Updates

City Facilities
The City of Guelph is phasing the reopening of outdoor pools and splash pads, public washrooms and Service Guelph in City Hall (for bus passes and tax payments only) with COVID-19 measures in place. Recreation centres (including the Evergreen Centre), libraries, museums remain closed to the public until the City can meet health guidelines.
Read the full announcement

Guelph Public Library
While the library is closed, curbside service is being provided. 
Guelph Public Library


Guelph Farmers’ Market
The Guelph Farmers’ Market will offer fresh food from local growers every Saturday starting July 4 from the back parking lot area.  You can see available vendors, place your order in advance, and get instructions and guidelines for safe pickup at the market here. 

City of Guelph - Recreation and Parks Month

Are you interested in Brain Yoga, Energy Bites, Memory Games, or Table Quidditch? How about Cup Art, Puffy Chalk Sidewalk Paint, or making a Microwaveable Heating Bag?

With recreation facilities still closed, the City of Guelph is taking programming online—sharing with you some favourite activities that can be done at home or in your backyard. Activities include fitness, arts and crafts, healthy recipes, brain games, water safety tips, and more.
See Recreation and Parks Online Activities here

The City website also offers details on which of their City parks are open and things that might interest you at their sites.
Learn more about City of Guelph Parks
Latest City of Guelph Information
City of Guelph—newsroom
City of Guelph—response to the coronavirus


Other Useful Connections

County of Wellington—Response to the Coronavirus
WDG Public Health—COVID-19
Ontario—COVID-19 Information and Self-Assessment
Canada Public Health—Coronavirus Awareness Resources
Canada Public Health- Coronavirus


Activities for Mind and Body

Check out the Canada Day Celebration Kit.
Let’s unite virtually and share our national pride!
Canada Day Celebrations—National
Canada Day Celebrations— Across the Country
Canada Day—Arts and Culture Activities
Canada Day—Crafts
Canada Day—True Canadian Recipes
Canada Day—Daytime Show
Canada Day—Evening Show
There are many more activities on our GWSA website in Activities for Mind and Body.  Please keep in mind that these provide free content, but connect to external sites not associated with the GWSA, each with its own terms, conditions and promotions.


Free Shopping Service

 Try this free shopping and delivery service for seniors needing help with groceries 
  • Available to seniors who live in Guelph, pay on delivery night with a valid credit card
  • Shopping and deliveries are from Zehrs Eramosa; Monday & Tuesday evenings
  • Email to confirm a night and email list by noon day prior
  • Thanks to generous volunteers, there is no charge for delivery!   
Get all the details here

GWSA - Contact Us

GWSA website                                   
GWSA contacts                                           contact form    
GWSA email updates                                  subscribe here
GWSA donations                                         donate online          
GWSA magazine                                         read The Sentinel  

" Keep Distance ... Stay Together"




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