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General News · 13th September 2021
Please drop into the Pioneer Room this Friday September 17th between 2 & 3 to find out more/sign up about this amazing program, pick up a form (see attachment) or come talk to us if you would like to provide services or sign up as a volunteer.

Most people love their home and want to stay there as long as they possibly can. To live where your memories are and to be surrounded by everything familiar is what makes most of us happy and keeps us mentally and physically healthy. Sometimes small changes have a big impact.
• Can't drive for a while? How do you get your medication?
• The grab bar in the shower broke? How do you get safely in and out?
• Are your sheets and towels too heavy when doing laundry and is changing your bed a challenge?
• Is getting the recycling to the end of your driveway a problem?
• Does that pile of firewood need to get split and under cover and you just don't have the energy?

Better at Home Cortes Island will provide non-medical support to assist older adults with simple day-to-day tasks so they can continue to live independently in their own home and stay connected with our community.

Services will be delivered by a combination of volunteers, paid staff and contractors depending upon the service required and the capacity of our program.
The program offers non-medical services to seniors who are:
• 65 years of age or older
• CISS members between 50 & 65 with mobility or health challenges
• Residents of Cortes Island
• Living in their own home

Services available:
• Visits: a weekly visit from a volunteer to your home (or out in the community once Provincial Health Orders ease).
• Deliveries: our volunteer drivers can deliver groceries and prescription medication to your home.
• Friendly Voices: regular phone contact to check in on isolated seniors, an easy way to stay connected. Seniors can receive regular check ins online or by phone by a volunteer—to make sure you’re safe or just to chat!
• Readers: volunteers share time with seniors with a book, magazine, tablet or newspaper.
• Light Housekeeping: assistance with light household chores such as vacuuming, dusting, bathrooms and laundry. To support independence we can work alongside, assisting with the chores that are
• Yard Work: assistance with raking leaves, mowing lawns, pruning to maintain safe outdoor spaces.
• Small Home Repairs: a variety of services for the maintenance and upkeep of the home. We will help where we can or refer to someone with the expertise needed.
• Transportation: volunteer drivers provide transport to and from appointments. (or to community outings once Provincial Health Orders change).

Who pays for Better at Home?
The Government of BC, through the Ministry of Health, provides funding to the United Way of the Lower Mainland to manage the Better at Home program across BC.
Older adults/seniors who receive Better at Home services may pay a fee based on their income. Some services may be free. These fees-for-service are fed back into the local program in order to serve more seniors.

Service fees are established on an income-based sliding scale which ensures that services are free for low income seniors, subsidized for those with median income and market rate for seniors with an income above the BC average. This service is offered on a sliding scale determined by Line 15000 (Total Income) on your Canada Revenue Agency income tax Notice of Assessment.

Up to four hours of service is provided by contracted agencies at a subsidized rate every four weeks. Additional hours of service can be purchased at the full rate.
(see attached schedule)

All Cortes Island Better at Home services will have COVID health and safety protocols in place. Service providers and clients are expected to follow these guidelines at all times and services will adapt to follow changes in Provincial Health Orders and WorkSafe guidelines.

Volunteers are an important part of the Better at Home program: Due to Covid seniors are feeling isolated even more. By volunteering your time with any one of the areas of service you are part of building community capacity to reduce the isolation and vulnerability of seniors in our community and helping them stay in their home longer. Our volunteer drivers will be reimbursed for mileage. A small stipend for lunch will be provided when taking a client to Campbell River for an appointment. (The pink slip will cover the ferry costs or the client will cover the ferry costs). All volunteers providing services directly to clients will be asked to sign a confidentiality form and must have a criminal record check.

Interested to become a client? Send an email to Ester: and I will send you an intake form (confidential) to fill in. Or call Carina 250-935-6793 (Monday-Friday 10-5) who can help you fill in the form if you need a hand.

Do you know somebody who could use this service? Please tell them about this new program or let us know and we can check in with them.

Ready to sign up for the program? Contact Ester by email: or phone Carina 250-935-6793 (Monday-Friday 10-5) We can send you an intake form, help you fill it out if needed and are happy to answer any questions.

Interested to volunteer? Email or call us, we would love to find out what services you can offer.

Better at Home ~ Cortes Island
Cortes Island Seniors Society
250-935-6793 (Carina, Monday-Friday 10-5)

Carina Verhoeve & Ester Strijbos