Community Health Fair connects residents to local health resources

Community Health Fair connects residents to local health resources

May 05, 2015

Seniors at Glenyon Manor enjoyed learning about the many programs and services available to support them at a recent Community Health Fair organized by Toronto Community Housing and its local community partners.

Community partner explains a brochure to a senior resident
Maria Calvachi of Flemingdon Health Centre describes local health programs and services to a senior resident.�

Seniors came rushing in, eager to speak with an array of health care and service providers who were present, including Flemingdon Health Centre, Toronto Central Community Care Access Centre, VHA Home Health Care, Better Living Health and Community Services, and from the Public Health Department at the City of Toronto, the Vulnerable Adults and Seniors team, the Chronic Disease and Injury Prevention Program, and Dental Services.

Two senior residents smiling at the Community Health Fair

Residents Lilyna and Morfa (left to right) take in a laugh at the Community Health Fair.

Residents Morfa and Tereza explained why the fair was important to them.

�This fair is very important for old people because we can�t always access information immediately when we have a problem. We need to be informed,� said senior resident Tereza.

�Today I feel good, but when I am sick and I need support to get my meals, to clean my house, or to access transport to get my medicine, I need to know who to call,� said Morfa.

Toronto Commuity Housing staff hold up an apple and a water bottle
Community Services Coordinator Francis Chiu and Manager of Resident Engagement and Community Development for the East Gail Johnson (left to right) model a healthy example by drinking water and eating an apple at the Community Health Fair.

Community Services Coordinator Francis Chiu explains how the fair came about.

�There have been a number of EMS calls at this seniors building over the past two to three months, so Toronto Community Housing staff came together with local community health care and service providers to collaborate on a solution,� said Francis.

�We identified and understood there was a need for preventative support and we devised a proactive forum to address the needs of residents,� he added.

By creating opportunities where staff and community organizations can work together, Toronto Community Housing is helping to build vibrant communities where residents can thrive.

Sarah Espina from Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office, describes why her organization wanted to participate in this initiative.

�Organizing an event like this is integral to the community. Seniors don�t go out a lot so it is critical that we take the initiative to go into their buildings to provide them with up-to-date information,� said Sarah.�

Two women from Better Living Home and Health Community Services hold up a poster

Better Living Health and Community Services representatives Jane Irving and Dina Silverberg (left to right) show off the Better Living community program guide at the fair.

Jane Irving and Dina Silverberg of Better Living Health and Community Services, an organization that provide supports to seniors and those with disabilities in Toronto Community Housing buildings across the city, described why they chose to participate in the fair.�

�A lot of people don�t know about the variety of services we offer. We wanted to put a face to the organization, we wanted residents to know `we are friendly and we�re here to help,� said Jane.

As a social housing provider, Toronto Community Housing goes beyond bricks and mortar to proactively support residents, collaborating with community partners to provide housing and services that promote dignity, health and an improved quality of life.

�The Community Health Fair has provided an opportunity to introduce residents to the variety of community services and resources available to them�to show them that they don�t always need to call EMS. There are a variety of community supports available right here. We wanted residents to know they are supported,� said Francis.

To see more images from this event,�visit the photo gallery on Facebook.