Volunteer Training Resources
Training can help volunteers and service providers better identify seniors who are isolated, understand their needs, and connect them with appropriate services and resources. Many of the training modules below will connect you with resources you can download to conduct interactive workshops for volunteers and staff who work with seniors. For each module, we also highly recommend Fact Sheets on Risk Factors affecting Social Isolation of Seniors, such as Caregiver Burnout, Physical Health, Mental Health, Low Income, Life Transitions, Linguistic and Cultural Barriers and Seniors Services and Benefits.
Exploring Risk Factors
Learn how vitally important social connections are to seniors’ wellbeing, and examine barriers faced by seniors that put them at risk of social isolation. Identify valuable ways to support seniors to build and maintain their social connections.
Communicating to Foster Connections
Hone your active listening skills as you explore boundaries and roadblocks to effective communication. Identify strategies to strengthen your ability to communicate and connect with seniors.
Exploring Diversity & Inclusion
Explore how we’re affected by power and privilege and learn about linguistic and cultural barriers that contribute to seniors’ isolation. Strengthen your ability to support seniors in the face of these barriers.
Moving Through Grief & Loss
Identify the central needs of those who are mourning. Learn about the physical and emotional reactions of grief and explore helpful ways to support a senior who is grieving.
Preparing for End of Life
Build your awareness of emotional and spiritual needs that arise when living with a life threatening illness. Explore your own personal thoughts on death and dying and expand your capacity to provide emotional support to a senior facing a life-limiting illness. Following are several highly recommended on-line resources:
Canadian Virtual Hospice – Information and support on palliative and end of life care, loss and grief.
At LivingMyCulture.ca, people from various cultures share their stories and wisdom about living with serious illness, end of life and grief to support others.
Caring for Patient’s Spirits at End of Life
Identify common themes in spirituality at
Becoming Dementia Friendly
Strengthen your knowledge of dementia and build coping skills. Reduce stigma for persons living with this disease and promote a Dementia Friendly approach to supporting older adults.
Seniors Services and Benefits
Uncover keys to secure and retain benefits for an older adult experiencing life transitions and events that strain an already limited income. Find out who is eligible, when and how to apply.
Medical Services Plan of BC
Find out what you need to know about the Medical Services Plan of BC. Explore eligibility, dependents and residency requirements.
Old Age Security
Find out what you need to know about Old Age Security and the Guaranteed Income Supplement.
Shelter Aid for Elderly Renters – SAFER
Learn about the SAFER program and how it helps make rent more affordable for BC Seniors with low to moderate income.
BC Fair PharmaCare
Find out how the BC Fair PharmaCare Plan helps British Columbians with the cost of eligible prescription drugs and designated medical supplies. Learn who is eligible, what costs are covered and where to get more information.
BC Bus Pass Program for Seniors
Explore the BC Bus Pass program, which provides an annual bus pass for a reduced price to low income seniors in BC.
Homeowners Property Tax Deferral and Home Adaptations for Independence (HAFI)
Examine the Homeowners Property Tax Deferral to find out how this program works and how it benefits seniors. Learn also about financial assistance for Home Adaptations for Independence for eligible low income British Columbians with mobility or health issues.
We’re all connected: Building Personal Support Networks
Explore the benefits of having a network of people to provide comfort, connection, encouragement
We’re all connected: Building Personal Support Networks (Slides)
Building Personal Support Networks (Worksheet)