GWSA COVID-19 Pandemic Response Update - June 30
Welcome to the GWSA Email Update
We have much to celebrate about Canada right now. The weather is ideal for heading outdoors, where we can benefit from the circulating air and easy physical distancing.
Canadians have done remarkably well in following the advice from health officials and government leaders, and we are being rewarded for our success relative to much of the world. We are learning to live alongside COVID-19 for a while. That means taking precautions as we gently escape from our ‘quarantine fatigue’. Those who are not at risk might venture to restaurant patios, parks, and malls. Remember to protect your personal social circle, do not mix circles, and continue to physically distance from everyone else.
We are taking this road trip together!
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.
Canada Day - Centre Wellington
Centre Wellington has decided to bring Canada Day to you - virtually! The party will air the evening of July 1, featuring local talent and artists, scenic sights from around the area, a dance party, Canadian trivia and virtual cooking classes, with enjoyment for all ages!
Local performers include Tony MacManus, Scott and Carolyn Woods, Fergus Pipe Band, Ryan Joyce Magician, Peter Piper and more! Hear stories from local residents and a special message from Mayor Kelly Linton.
Centre Wellington—Canada Day Celebrations
Canada Day - CN Tower
The CN Tower will salute Canada Day with an extraordinary 15-minute light show beginning at 10 pm on July 1, broadcast live on CP24.
With powerful light cannons beaming across the city sky and a playlist featuring music by a diverse group of Canadian artists simulcast on CHUM FM 104.5 those in Toronto can tune in and look up, and all Canadians can watch from home and sing along to a celebration in light and sound.
Canada Day - Virtual Fireworks
You can watch virtual fireworks from your back yard or balcony. To get the full experience you will need to point your smart phone or tablet at the night sky at 10pm local time and a 3-minute show displaying 3D fireworks will begin. For the full experience, you will be asked to provide access to your device’s camera. The augmented reality will give you the same visual and sound effects as a real fireworks display!
The link includes a countdown timer so you know when it is about to begin.
Virtual Fireworks Link
Canada Day - National Celebrations
All those who celebrate Canada as their home and native land celebrate Canada Day on July 1.
Check out the Canada Day Celebration Kit.
Canada Day Celebrations—National
Canada Day Celebrations— Across the Country
Canada Day—Arts and Culture Activities
Canada Day—True Canadian Recipes
Canada Day—Daytime Show
Canada Day—Evening Show
GWSA - The Sentinel
We know that many of our members look forward to receiving The Sentinel magazine each month. While the print edition isn’t available for now, our dedicated volunteers have prepared The Sentinel for your online enjoyment. Here is the July edition.
GWSA Quilters - Mask Sales Draw Big Crowd
Pat Gage reported that the sale of fabric face masks last week was a huge success. The group made $2100 and almost sold out.
The GWSA Quilters will continue to make masks throughout the summer for the fall season. People were impressed with how well the quilters stepped up to the task and provided almost 500 masks for the sale! People were lined up at the Evergreen Centre almost like the entrance to a Big Box Store.
The GWSA Quilters extend a big thank you to Toni, Adam and Don from the City who made it so easy to set up and take down and provide the support needed for the sale. Congratulations on hosting a successful event!
GWSA - Supporting Seniors Through the Pandemic
The Guelph Wellington Seniors Association has prepared and helped distribute over 6,300 meals and over 4,000 pounds of produce since the start of the pandemic!
Many seniors have health or mobility issues that make it difficult to stand and prepare meals, or to get out shopping. Some do not have the family support or the available funds needed for the long term.
GWSA’s Community Support Services (CSS) has responded to make sure that local seniors have food cooked by the chefs and delivered. This service has been life-saving for many, who appreciate receiving the frozen dinners along with fresh fruit and veggies and recipes.
For Molly Roberts, Community Eat Well Coordinator at the GWSA, making weekly deliveries has become the new normal, as CSS has gone from delivering to 36 people in the first few weeks, to almost 190. Meals are prepared at the Evergreen Centre, with funding support from the United Way, and delivered to buildings which are geared to older adults and income.
GWSA has partnered with The SEED in Guelph, which provides a place to do the packing and provides help obtaining fresh produce. Community Support Services staff have shifted from their usual programming to packing, delivering food and keeping connected with vulnerable seniors by their drop-offs and phone calls.
The GWSA has more than 2,600 members and over 500 professionals and volunteers that operate more than 40 activity groups and services.
Read full article in Guelph Today
Third Age Learning - Fall Programs
Third Age Learning Guelph is a non-profit organization that holds four lecture programs yearly for those interested in life-long learning.
Traditionally the lectures have been presented as an in-person series at the Arboretum Centre, University of Guelph. As with so many other organizations they have had to rethink their process and are now offering an online version of the presentations, using Zoom. With so many people being isolated today, they would like to extend an invitation as widely as possible to join them.
Stimulate your mind with new ideas from leaders in a variety of subject areas. Without volunteers, their high calibre and entertaining lectures would not take place. They would love to have you lend a hand as well.
Calendar of Speakers
Register for Workshops
Third Age Learning—website
CIRA - Security
Many Canadian households are under attack by malware and phishing, and family members aren't always equipped with the knowledge they need to avoid malicious content.
Some may wonder where Canadians can look for the same level of protection that large corporations have enjoyed for years without having to worry about their data being sold to advertisers. CIRA—Canadian Shield is a Canadian non-profit corporation that is dedicated to building a better online Canada. Their basic free service protects home computers and devices by checking the sites for safety before you download malicious code that requires your virus protection to locate it and remove it afterwards.
Protect against theft of personal and financial data. Keep viruses, ransomware, and other malware out of your home. The enterprise-grade protection is “Built by Canadians for Canadians.” You can read all about it and judge if this is something that sounds right for you.
Learn more about CIRA here
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 process, 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.
For more information, please email:
Gail Moore firstname.lastname@example.org
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 up-to-date information. You can update that online through Rec Enroll, below.
GWSA - Remember to update your information
Please visit http://recenroll.ca 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. All valid memberships have been extended through the state of emergency.
You can “Edit your Account” to update any information that is out of date.
If you don’t have a password or have forgotten, 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 email@example.com or
Connie Shaw firstname.lastname@example.org
Inspiration - from the Front Lines of Care
Dr. Isaac Bogoch, an infectious disease physician at Toronto General Hospital, said transmission has declined "to an impressive extent," and lockdowns can't remain in place forever. But he also warned against complacency.
And this from Canada's chief medical officer, Dr. Theresa Tam:
"With COVID-19 around us, we can't have a reopening that doesn't include all of us working together to keep our guard up and keep the curve down. Now that spaces are reopening, we need to avoid or strictly limit our time in settings and situations that increase our risk of exposure to the virus, like close spaces with poor ventilation, crowded places with large numbers of people gathered and close contacts where you can't keep the two metres apart from others."
We will head back to being able to socialize and be close again, but not now. You can head to that patio, get that haircut, have friends over in your back yard but all with physical distancing and mask wearing.
My staff members know that I could blend bubbles with my kids that live close by. But I won't. We do not need to wear masks in the parts of our office that are not open to the general public, but we do—to protect each other. We must follow the guidelines and beyond in order to avoid the heart-breaking scenario that is happening throughout the world, and not subject ourselves to more suffering in the name of complacency.
-condensed from Dr. Zajdlik
Read full postings on Anne-Marie Zajdlik’s blog
COVID-19 - Updates and Reminders
More on Social Circles
The Government of Ontario advised 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.
How to Build a Social Circle
Who Should Self-Isolate?
You should self-isolate if you are in an at-risk group, think you have symptoms of COVID-19, or think you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 or who has recently returned from travel.
This means that you should only leave your home or see other people for critical reasons like a medical emergency. You should try to get what you need online, over the phone, or from friends, family or neighbours.
Who is in an At-Risk Group?
You may be in an at-risk group for COVID-19 if you:
- are 70 years old or older
- are getting treatment that compromises (weakens) your immune system (chemotherapy, medication for transplants, corticosteroids, TNF inhibitors)
- have a condition that compromises (weakens) your immune system (lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, other autoimmune disorder)
- have a chronic (long-lasting) health condition (diabetes, emphysema, asthma, heart condition)
- regularly go to a hospital or health care setting for a treatment (dialysis, surgery, cancer treatment)
Should You Get Tested for COVID-19?
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
How to Stop the Spread of COVID-19
Ontario—Take a Self-Assessment
Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health
Reminder - Face Masks are Required
The Medical Officer of Health for the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Health Unit has ordered all persons who own or operate a commercial establishment in the jurisdiction of the Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Health Unit, to prohibit persons from entering the premises or remaining in the premises if not wearing a face covering. The face covering must be worn inside at all times, unless it is reasonably required to temporarily remove it for services provided. The business must also ensure the availability of alcohol-based hand rub at all entrances and exits.
Revised: People may be exempt from wearing a face covering if
- they are under the age of 2 years; or under 5 years either chronologically or developmentally and refuse to wear a face covering and cannot be persuaded to do so by their caregiver;
- a face covering would inhibit their ability breathe;
- for any other medical reason, they cannot safely wear a face covering including but not limited to, respiratory disease, cognitive difficulties or difficulties in hearing or processing information.
WDG Public Health—COVID-19
How to Wear a Non-medical Mask Safely
City of Guelph - Updates
Thank you for wearing a mask or face covering in Guelph. You are required to wear a single-use or fabric mask, scarf, or bandana to cover your nose and mouth when using public transit or visiting indoor commercial establishments. Wearing a homemade face covering may not protect you from the virus, but it can help protect others around you.
-Some public washrooms are open from 8 am to 8 pm.
-Community gardens may open under COVID-19 guidelines.
-Parking fees and time limits in City parking lots, metered spaces and on-street parking spots will resume July 6, 2020, with some exemptions.
Guelph Transit changes
Free transit service continues until July 6. Please leave space between you and other riders if you can, and please wear a mask to help protect all riders from COVID-19. Do not use public transit if you are feeling unwell, or you have traveled outside Canada within the past 14 days.
Mobility Service dispatch hours
Mobility service users will be screened; many customers are older adults who may be more at risk of severe illness.
- Monday to Friday: 8 am to 9 pm
- Saturday: 8 am to 7 pm
- Sunday: 9 am to 3 pm
City of Guelph—newsroom
City of Guelph—response to the coronavirus
Guelph Farmers Market
Starting July 4, the Guelph Farmers’ Market will offer fresh food from local growers every Saturday from the back parking lot area.
Guelph Farmers’ Market has reduced the usual complement of vendors to up to 30 farmers and producers of fresh food. This helps accommodate the size, physical distancing requirements and staff available to make the temporary market safe during COVID-19.
Market shoppers can also pre-order items from select vendors in advance to be picked up on market day. Use the market map to plan your visit and for a list of current participating vendors.
The market has put together safety measures with help from Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health. For the smoothest shopping experience, you can familiarize yourself with procedures in advance by checking the following site.
Rules for Shopping at the Farmers' Market
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
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.
Art Gallery of Guelph - Museum from Home
At the Art Gallery of Guelph’s site “Museum from Home”, you can see digital images of current exhibitions, tour the sculpture park, or download colouring pages to reimagine artworks from the AGG’s permanent collections in your own colours!
AGG—Museum from Home
Canada Day - Historical Perspectives
Canada Day commemorates the anniversary of the Constitution Act, which consolidated three territories (Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, and the Province of Canada) into the single nation of Canada in 1867. We have evolved a lot since then. At the beginning the Dominion of Canada included four provinces: Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, and Ontario. Over time, the remaining provinces and three territories gradually joined Confederation.
Canada’s Growth—Canadian Encyclopedia
Canada's History—Government of Canada
The territory of Nunavut is the newest and largest in area of Canada's provinces and territories. Comprising about one-fifth of the total landmass of Canada, it is the size of Western Europe. Nunavut Day is celebrated every year on July 9.
Learn more about Nunavut Day
One part of New France still remains adjacent to Newfoundland. If you take the ferry to Saint Pierre and Miquelon you will visit what is still a territory of France situated right in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.
Learn about St. Pierre and Miquelon
Wellington County Museum and Archives - Virtual Tours
Effective Monday, July 13, 2020, the Wellington County Museum and Archives will resume regular business hours (Monday - Friday from 9:30 am - 4:30 pm, Saturday - Sunday from 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm). Please note, mandatory screening procedures will be in place at the entrances of all County buildings, and visitors will be required to wear a face covering and respect physical distancing protocols at all times inside the facilities.
Although the Museum might be closed right now, the Wellington County story never ends! Come along from home as Museum staff members tell you fascinating, funny, and sometimes sad, but always interesting, stories. They are travelling to every township in the County and you can take part with them!
Wellington County Museum Virtual Tours
There is plenty of evidence that interacting with nature provides many benefits.
Now that we can venture out safely with appropriate distancing, we can enjoy the season and gain many benefits by spending some time outside. If you are growing a bit tired of isolating, you may find it enlightening to know that nature can make us kinder, happier, and even more creative!
11 Reasons to Spend More Time Outside—Business Insider
Nature makes you kinder, happier, and more creative—Berkeley
The Very Real Benefits of Going Camping
Pluto Shares a Dog's Perspective - humour
If you are looking for a smile you might try “Pluto Living” on YouTube. Pluto addresses the “internets” with public service announcements, her comments about COVID-19, and random thoughts on life. Pluto Living is the creation of world wildlife photographer, N.J. Wight. Pluto has quite a following if you want to follow her YouTube videos.
Pluto on YouTube
Free Shopping Service
Try this free shopping and delivery service for seniors needing help with groceries
Get all the details here
- 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 email@example.com to confirm a night and email list by noon day prior
- Thanks to generous volunteers, there is no charge for delivery!
Donate to United Way
GWSA - Contact Us
GWSA website gwsa-guelph.ca
GWSA contacts contact form
GWSA email updates subscribe here
GWSA donations donate online
GWSA magazine read The Sentinel
"Keep distance...Stay together."