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GWSA Email Update for the Month of November


Welcome to the GWSA Email Update

Welcome to the GWSA Email Updates.  If you wish to forward this email to a friend, you may do so using this link.  The November issue of The Sentinel is available on the GWSA webpage as are back issues. Paper copies of The Sentinel are available for purchase at the front desk of the Evergreen Centre for $3.00 each.  

In and Around the GWSA

Dave Elgar of the Evergreen Canoe Club Resigning
Dave Elgar, senior Canoeing Instructor, and Trip Co-Ordinator of the GWSA Evergreen Canoe Club announced his resignation.  Dave has served with the Evergreen Canoe Club in these capacities since the second year of the Club founding.  Dave is the consummate outdoors man and canoeist.  Dave will be moving north to a Horse Riding Farm he and his young family have purchased.  This is the ideal setting for Dave, as the property is quite large and includes an extensive tract of hunting woodlands, along with a trout and salmon stream next.


John Ness, President, presents a commemorative engraved paddle to Dave Elgar, Senior Canoeing Instructor and Trip Co-ordinator of the Evergreen Canoe Club, upon his resignation.                                                                              
We all owe a great deal to Dave.  Every one of us can appreciate his wonderful mentoring, when, on a raging river, we plant our paddle just at the correct time and in the correct place to save us from a very wet experience, or worse.

Thank you Dave from each and every one of us that has been through or is in the Evergreen Canoe Club.  We hope you will visit us often and wish you and yours every success in you new adventure.

Quilting Club - Spreading Christmas Cheer
Photo by Jean Hilborn
Shh! Don’t tell anyone but the GWSA Quilting group and Craft group are busy making small Christmas surprises to tuck into one of the Christmas food deliveries for our Community Support Services clients. A neighbourhood chipmunk stopped by for a snack as quilter Jean Hilborn worked on her yoyo trees one beautiful Fall day. We’d tell you more about what the quilters and crafters have up their sleeves, but that would spoil the surprise! 

If you’re the crafty sort and would like to help spread some Christmas cheer, please get in touch with Pat Gage ( 


In and Around Guelph

Lest We Forget - Remembrance Day Events
Remembrance Day will be different this year.  There are several ways on offer to participate safely in Remembrance Day events.  

Programming by Guelph Museums
The Guelph Museums are offering special programming for Remembrance Day.  There will be virtual programming available in the form of online educational seminars, running daily from Nov. 9 to 13.  More information on this program is available here.

On Remembrance Day, McCrae House will be open extended hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Guelph Civic Museum will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Time ticketed entry is required and can be booked in advance through Eventbrite or by calling 519-836-1221.

Programming by Waterloo Warbirds
In order to honour those who have served, the Waterloo Warbirds will be flying a variety of vintage aircraft over nine local cenotaphs and three major cemeteries.  The Guelph Cenotaph and Woodlawn Cemetery are included in their program.

The flight will take place between 10:30 a.m. and 11:15 a.m. on Nov. 11 and a specific route will be released prior to the day of the flight. Depending on aircraft availability, the Honour Flight may be split into two flights covering all the mentioned areas noted above.  More details about the Waterloo Warbirds and their program can be found here.

Programming by Centre Wellington Museum and Archives
To mark Remembrance Day, the Wellington County Museum and Archives have created a virtual exhibit entitled "Wellington Remembers: Our Cenotaphs Unveiled" outlining the history of the 13 cenotaphs in the county.  Also, they will host a candlelight tribute to the fallen in Wellington County.  Staff have placed 500 memorial poppy markers on the front lawn of the Wellington County Museum and Archives site (0536 Wellington County Road 18) and there will be lit candles burning all night on November 10 and 11.  The candles will be removed on November 12.  Members of the public are welcome to visit the the markers at any time, but physical distancing must be maintained at all times.

Guelph Dining District Wrapping Up
The outdoor dining district in downtown Guelph has closed for the season.  The last weekend of operation was November 8 and 9.

Changes to Traffic Signals at the Evergreen Centre
Pedestrians now have a five-second head start to cross the street before cars get a green signal at several Guelph intersections, including at the traffic light on Woolwich Street at the Evergreen Seniors Centre.  This article contains a complete list of the intersections with changes.

Financial Information for Seniors

Online Financial Seminars

The Canadian Foundation for Economic Education is offering free seminars for seniors.  They include topics such as 

  • learning how to set and reach financial goals
  • adapting, planning for and managing retirement from a financial perspective
  • how to recognize various expenses and plan a practical budget
  • learning how to continue saving in retirement
  • planning and starting a second career
  • coping with the loss of a partner or spouse
  • making estate arrangements

These workshops will also address the financial challenges of living in a COVID-19 pandemic. Click here for details.

Avoiding Interruptions in Guaranteed Income Supplement Benefits
The federal Canadian Minister for Seniors advises that to avoid any interruptions in the receipt of benefits in January 2021, Guaranteed Income Supplement recipients who have not already filed their 2019 income tax should contact Service Canada by calling 1-800-277-9914 (English) or 1-800-277-9915 (French) or should file their taxes electronically with the Canada Revenue Agency. That way, we can ensure that you continue to receive your benefits when you need them the most. 


COVID-19 Pandemic Response Update

COVID-19 Transmission and Mask Policy Changes
The Canadian Chief Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Teresa Tam has acknowledged that COVID-19 can be transmitted by aerosol particles as well as by droplets as previously communicated.  She has also changed the recommended guidance for masks recommended for use by Canadians.  Canadians are now advised to wear masks made from three layers of fabric.  The government's detailed recommendations are available here.  Instructions for making non-medical masks and face coverings are available here.  Masks should be made of two layers of tightly woven fabric with a filter.  Non-woven polypropylene fabric is being recommended as a filter material.  This material comes in different formats.  It is commonly used in reusable shopping bags (the non-plasticized types) and is machine washable.  Non-woven interface fabric is another source of non-woven polypropylene.  The material comes in different weights, you may wish to try different products to get a mask that works for you.

Masks made and sold by the GWSA Quilters club were typically made of two layers of tightly woven fabric and they were sold in a variety of different designs.  Some of these designs included an opening, like a pocket, to accommodate an extra filter.  These masks can be readily converted to three layer masks by the addition of either a filter or an extra layer of fabric.  

Flu Shot Information
This year it is more important than ever to protect oneself by getting a flu shot.  The Canadian Minister for Seniors, Deb Schulte has the following advice:
In Canada, the flu is among the top 10 leading causes of death. Seniors and those who live in nursing homes or other long-term care facilities are at greater risk of getting flu-related complications such as pneumonia, worsening of chronic health conditions, hospitalization or even death.

The flu shot is the best way to prevent the flu, and it can also reduce the severity of flu-related complications. While the flu shot will not protect you against COVID-19, it will help reduce your chances of being infected with COVID-19 and the flu at the same time, which could lead to more serious complications.

It is best to get the flu shot between October and December, so that you are protected during the height of the flu season. It can take up to two weeks for your body to build protection against the flu once you are vaccinated. So get the flu shot early to protect yourself, your family and your community!

Locally, flu shots are available at your doctor's office, at pharmacies and through Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health .  Each option has its own requirements.  Some require appointments and some require pre-screening before coming to their location.  Flu vaccine is currently in short supply some places.  Check ahead with your provider of choice to ensure a positive experience for all involved.

In addition to getting the flu shot, you can help prevent the spread of the flu and other respiratory viruses by practicing the following healthy habits:
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Cough and sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm.
  • Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
  • Dispose of used tissues in a lined waste container and then wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as toilets, phones and door handles.
  • Stay away from others if you feel sick.
  • If you have  symptoms, isolate yourself from others and contact your health care provider or local public health authority for guidance. You may need to be tested for COVID-19.

Ontario Colour Coded COVID-19 Control System
Ontario has announced major changes to how it will impose COVID-19 restrictions and shutdowns, introducing a new colour-coded, tiered system that outlines clear criteria for when to impose lockdowns and closures.

The five categories include Prevent (green), Protect (yellow), Restrict (orange), Control (red) or Lockdown (grey).

Each stage comes with a set of criteria, giving local health units and business owners some level of predictability when it comes to pandemic related restrictions.  The status of key indicators for each health unit area will be monitored on a regular basis and updated as the indicators mandate.

The status of the health units is here and details of the criteria can be found here.  The latest information on the situation in the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph public health unit is here.

Federal Approval for Rapid COVID Test by Local Company 
Precision Biomonitoring, a local Guelph company, has received approval for their SARS-CoV2 Triplelock Test Strips from Health Canada.  This is the first approval of a rapid test system developed by a Canadian company.  More information is available here.

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"Stay Together...Keep Distance"

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